Chidinma Ekile who goes by the stage name ‘Chidinma’ is a Nigerian singer and songwriter and a gospel singer.
Chidinma quickly gained prominence after she won the MTN Project Fame West Africa Season 3.
Popular tunes from the star include, Kedike, Emi Ni Baller, Jankoliko amongst others.
Chidinma won KORA Awards in 2012 for Best Female West African Act.
Recently, we were bombarded from everywhere with news of Chidinma Ekile’s transition from secular to gospel music.
Before we talk about all that,
Chidinma – Early Life
The star singer was born in Ketu, Kosofe of Lagos State, Nigeria.
She was born on May 2, 1991.
Her parents are both from Imo State and she’s the sixth of seven children.
Chidinma began singing quite early, an advantage that would later give her the sound she now possess.
As early as six, she already began singing. At 10, she joined the choir in church.
Chidinma obtained a sociology degree from the University of Lagos. Before then, she wanted to study mass communication instead.
Project Fame West Africa ( a music talent TV reality show filmed in Lagos and aired around West Africa) announced their auditions and she went for the auditions. This is where her journey to stardom began.
Before signing up for the project Fame auditions, she worked as a business promoter in Lagos.
According to reports, there were over eight thousand contestants at that year’s edition of the reality show.
Chidinma was among the finalists and won the competition after weeks of undergoing rigorous drills and trainings.
In the history of the show, there’s been several winners including,
Iyanya (Season 1 Winner)
Mike Anyasodo (Season 2 Winner)
Chidinma (Season 3 Winner)
Monica Ogah (Season 4 Winner)
Ayoola (Season 5 Winner)
Olawale (Season 6 Winner)
Geoffrey Oji (Season 7 Winner)
Jeff Akoh (Season 8 Winner)
Okiemute Ighorodje (Season 9 Winner)
But Chidinma happens to be one of the few who have gone ahead to have a successful career after the show.
For the season that she was featured in, Chidinma was declared the winner on September 10, 2010.
How Chidinma Stepped Into The Industry
On winning Project Fame West Africa, she won several prizes, and this paved the way for her industry beginnings.
Being the favorite contestant on the competition, she already had fans and supporters even before she started her career.
She’s said to be amongst the few singers who rose to stardom as a result of participating in the reality TV show.
Reaching millions of people at a time, this show gave Chidinma the platform from which she garnered followers for her emerging career.
She won a star prize of N2.5 million, a 2011 model Toyota RAV4, and a production deal.
Shortly after, herself and other contestants at the competition, came together to release a collaborative project.
The Eponymous Album ‘Chidinma’
Her eponymous debut album ‘Chidinma’ was slated to be released in the later part of 2011.
In February 2011, she released singles from the album ‘Jankoliko’ and ‘Carry You Go’.
These singles were well received by the public and she got positive reviews in return.
Later that year, she released the third single from the album, ‘Kedike’.
Kedike was also very successful. Cobhams Asuquo produced the track.
Her eponymous album ‘Chidinma’ was released in 2012.
The album consists of 11 tracks including previously released singles Kedike, Jankoliko and Carry You Go.
Other Singles, Collaborations and Performances
Chidinma has since gone ahead to release several hit singles and have had several notable collaborations.
Emi Ni Baller was released in 2012 to commercial success in Nigeria and critical success as well.
The song Emi Ni Baller was remixed in 2013. She featured Grammy Award winner Wizkid.
Other singles that were released include:
Bless My Hustle, Kite, Jolly
Oh Baby Remix featuring Flavour N’abania.
Fallen In Love.
Awards and Notable Accomplishments
Chidinma won Best Female West African Act at the 2012 Kora Awards. The former Football Star Didier Drogba made the presentation of this award to her during the ceremony.
Beating several other performers for the award, Chidinma in her speech said,
“It was a huge honour to me. I’m grateful to God, my fans and people who have been part of my success story. Winning KORA is a big achievement for me and I know it is the beginning of better things to come.”
Talking about her musical influences and inpiration, Chidinma has mentioned great names including Michael Jackson, Alicia Keys, Whitney Houston, Bob Marley, Mariah Carey, Fela Kuti, Onyeka Onwenu, Lagbaja, , Omawumi, and Darey Art Alade as being her biggest musical influences.
Right from her days in MTN Project West Africa, Chidinma has been a great inspiration to so many youths in Nigeria and around the world.
Chidinma successfully set up a non governmental organization NMA Care Foundation to help in improving the quality of life for visually impaired children.
After she won the Kora Awards for Best Female West African Act and that same year she was nominated twice at Nigeria Entertainment Awards.
The first category she was nominated in was Best New Act of the Year, while the second category was Best Pop/R&B Artist of the Year.
Moving forward to 2013, she got even more nominations. The Headies nominated her for Best Vocal Performance (Female). She didn’t win this nomination though, but the nomination came in as a sign that her contributions to the industry were recognized.
In that same year she got a Channel O Music Video Awards nomination in the ‘Most Gifted African West’ category for her song video Emi Ni Baller.
She also got a nomination at Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA) in Best Afro Pop and Best Indigenous Concept categories.
Chidinma was also nominated at the City People Entertainment Awards for Musician of the Year (Female) and at Nigeria Entertainment Awards for Best Collabo when she featured Tha Suspect and IllBliss.
Due to Chidinma’s success in the industry, 2014 met her bagging several award nominations as well, including:
Nigeria Music Video Awards (NMVA) for Video of the Year, Best Afro Hip Hop Video and Best Pop Extra Video (which she actually won). This has been her second and last win since then till the time of this writing.
Chdinma got a recognition at ‘The Headies’ for the award category Best Collabo.
At MTV Africa Music Awards 2014, Best Female category she got a nomination as well.
Same year, she got an African Muzik Magazine Awards nomination for Best Female West Africa.
She got several nominations at Nigeria Entertainment Awards 2014.The nominations came in the following categories:
Best Pop/R&B Artist of the Year, Female Artist of the Year, Best Music Video of the Year (for artist and director) and Best Collaboration.
Chidinma got a nomination at City People Entertainment Awards for Best Collabo of the Year and Musician of the Year(Female category).
Endorsements and Other Achievements
In 2013, MTN made a deal with Chidinma and made her one of its ambassadors.
Molped made Chidinma its brand ambassador in 2019.
Collaborations On Singles, Albums and Other Projects
Chidinma has worked and collaborated with a lot of artiste and big names in the Nigerian Music Industry. The likes of Wizkid, Flavour N’biana, Banky W, Ill Bliss, Kcee, Muna, Mystro, Sound Sultan, Phyno, Monica Ogah, Praiz, Tha Suspect, Blaise, and Olamide.
She has worked with a number of producers including, Cobhams Asuquo, Tee-Y Mix, WazBeat, Legendury Beatz, Del B, Wizzboy and Oscar Heman Ackah.
For other projects inluding music videos and projects that she was featured on, she has worked with names like Clarence Peters, Dammy Krane, Tesh Carter, Silvastone , Mystro, Mr 2kay, Silvastone,
Chidinma has not just performed in Nigeria, but has also travelled to other African countries to perform.
These countries include Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Republic of Benin, Kenya, Cameroun, Equatorial Guinea, Sierra Leone and Niger.
Chidinma – Transition To Gospel Music
Chidinma announced her transition to Gospel music in May 2021 via her Instagram Page.
On her Instagram page she said
‘My name is Minister Chidinma Ekile, I’m a crusader of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
She went even further to update her bio with:
‘AN END TIME SOLDIER
MY MESSAGE IS JESUS’
This move came after she has been absent from the music scene for a while.
EeZee Conceptz Signing
Chidinma is currently signed to EeZee Conceptz and recently, and she recently released a brand new gospel single ‘Jehovah Overdo’.
EeZee Conceptz have been doing a great job of managing and creating platforms for talented gospel Artistes.
They currently house a number of popular Nigerian gospel artistes including, Mercy Chinwo (MM1), Judikay, Minister GUC, and Chidinma.
EeZee Conceptz currently have a combined total of over 290 million views on YouTube.
While her transition to Gospel music comes as a shocker to many, many of her supporters have pledged their continuous loyalty to the Kedike crooner.
Whether or not this decision is permanent we can’t say, but one thing is sure,
Time will tell, but in the meantime we at thingstoknow.com.ng wish her success all the way.