Hadiza Blell, better known by her stage name Di’Ja, is a Sierra Leonean Nigerian singer, visual artist and songwriter. She is currently signed to Mavin Records.
In 2009, she released her first single “Rock Steady” which was nominated for Best Urban/R&B Single at the 2009 Canadian Radio Music Awards. Also, she won the Best New Artist award at the 2008 Beat Music Awards.
Di’Ja has lived in Nigeria, Sierra Leone, the United States and Canada. Her mother is from Kaduna Nigeria, while her father is from Sierra Leone. At a young age, Di’Ja committed herself to academia and earned a double degree in Biology and Psychology. After earning the aforementioned degrees, Di’Ja became passionate about music, art and philosophy.
Her pasion for music had something to do with her parents’ collection of old CDs; her mum especially and she thinks it’s innate.
According to her, her parents are the amazing people who have contributed in making who she is today through the upbringing they gave her. Her childhood was colorful, she says, which has translated to her life at this stage always being colourful. She has an older brother who’s reportedly her best friend. Family, for her, is priority.
Di’Ja grew up in Kaduna, which is always home for her, and is also where it all started for her. She moved to further her education, then got called back home again. Her professional music career started when a friend, Aman Manhas, signed her up for a singing competition in Canada, called the Beat Music Awards. She never looked back since.
When asked in an interview about the influence that her being of two different nationality has on her music, she responded:
“I believe that it is a great privilege to have mixed parentage. It allows you to be more tolerable of other people. For me, this opportunity to have many cultures within my family and other people has opened my mind to a lot of things.
“It has given me more boldness to express different thoughts. I use Hausa and pidgin in my lyrics. It is a necessary blend because I feel different people from different places would be able to relate with me.”
The singer is fan green colors and also like Garri Ijbeu+Beans as one of her fav. meals
Her music career started in 2008.
In 2009, she released her first single “Rock Steady” which was nominated for Best Urban/R&B Single at the 2009 Canadian Radio Music Awards. Moreover, she won the Best New Artist award at the 2008 Beat Music Awards which was quite a boost to her her career back then in Canada.
In 2012, Di’Ja released several singles including “Dan’Iska (Rudebwoy)”, “Hold On (Ba Damuwa)” and “How Can We Be Friends”. She was in Canada when she released these songs, and the tracks showed her talent to the fans she had then.
Through her manager, she met Don Jazzy. She says she didn’t expect to meet the Nigerian maestro producer. When they got to the studio, she was sharing her songs with some of the guys around when Don Jazzy walked in. “It was both exciting and scary” she says. Don Jazzy listened to two of her songs, and liked the songs.
She was technically in the pipe-line for consideration for 8 months. They worked and created songs together to see the chemistry between the rest of the crew and her. After Don Jazzy confirmed her talent he officially signed her to the record label.
On February 14, 2014, Don Jazzy announced the addition of Di’Ja to Mavin Records. Her first official single under Mavin Records was also released on February 14, 2014. The song, which is titled “Yaro”, is an up-tempo celebration of love and commitment against all odds. It infuses Hausa and Krio dialects in honour of her Nigerian and Sierra Leonean roots.
In May 2014, Di’Ja was featured on “Dorobucci” alongside label mates Don Jazzy, Dr SID, Tiwa Savage, D’Prince, Korede Bello and Reekado Banks. In May 2014, an animated video was released for “Dorobucci”. As of 21 June 2014, “Dorobucci” has received over 12 million downloads since its release. Di’Ja was featured on “Arise” alongside Don Jazzy and Reekado Banks.
Later same year she was featured alongside other mavin crew in hit songs like; Adaobi, as well as Looku Looku.
In December 2014, she released her biggest hit single so far “Aww,” a song which was quite accepted by a lot of hiphop fans in Nigeria and Africa. The single topped so many charts as her fan base increased. The video gained a lot of views on youtube and the single is considered among the top hit singles of 2015.
Di’ja has since then gone on many concerts tour outside Nigeria, making 2015 a great one for her music career.
Di’Ja has been nominated for a couple of awards and won some; She won the 2008 Beat Music Awards under the Best New Artist category.
She has also signed a multi-million Naira endorsement deal with telecom giant GLO.