According to the YBNL founder, he offered to sign Omah Lay to his record label but the hitmaker turned him down.
The YBNL boss disclosed this recently in an online interview with media personality, Adesope Olajide on Afrobeats Podcast.
According to Baddo, someone had sent him Omah Lay’s EP, Bad Influence and after he listened to it, he was really impressed by the song and he searched for him on Instagram to buzz him.
When Olamide finally reached him with a music record deal, Omah Lay told him that he already had a deal signed with another music label.
See top 10 artists that benefited from Olamide’s spotlight and co-sign:
Olamide has endorsed certain acts with his co-sign and other times, he’s signed them.
Olamide and his label, YBNL have contributed to some of the biggest music careers in recent Nigerian history. While some have since left him in acrimony, most retain respect for him. When his 10th studio project, 999 EP was announced on February 9, 2020, Adekunle Gold and Fireboy, two artists he’s helped announced the album on Twitter NG.
Xino is definitely the most ineffectual YBNL signing. Signed almost at the same time as Chinko Ekun, the Plateau State-born artist released two singles, ‘TTYL’ and ‘Nakam’ on the label before exiting in acrimonious circumstances per 2016.
Upon his exit from the label, the singer gave an exclusive interview to Showtime where he took swipes at Olamide, “YBNL management and other labels in Nigeria need to adopt an entrepreneurial system that focuses on artiste development because there is zero fan base in Nigeria.
In November 2018, Picazo Rhap went from the Nigerian rapper creating viral freestyle videos on random beats to a social media sensation. One morning, his freestyle to smash hit, ‘Able God’ went viral on Twitter.
It was almost like he knew the video would go viral. Picazo was featured on the YBNL Mafia Family album and things changed. He got his own single and video, ‘Macaroni.’ But soon after the ‘Lyta saga,’ he also announced his exit from YBNL. He is now with Senior Boyz Records.
Edo State-born Nigerian rapper, Viktoh signed to YBNL in 2014 – around the same time as Lil Kesh.
While signed to the label, the rapper/singer with the unique style and technique released a strings of singles like the mildly successful hit, ‘Skiibi Dat’ to other singles like ‘Say Dem Say,’ ‘All My Ladies,’ and ‘Mad Jam.’
When things didn’t really work out for him, his exit was confirmed in a December 2016 report by NET alongside Adekunle Gold’s and Chinko Ekun’s. News of his exit had, however, been making the rounds since April.
In November 2016, Olamide signed Davolee. This was after the exodus that involved Chinko Ekun, Lil Kesh, Viktoh and Adekunle Gold. The label needed some fresh blood and it duly got one.
His signing got announcements on Olamide’s Facebook and Instagram pages with the message, “Artiste ‘Davolee’ new YBNL boy… new song… Festival Bar…Davolee Ileka.”
Between 2016 and 2018 that he was assumed to be on the label, he released two genuinely impressive songs, 2017’s B-Banks-produced ‘Festival Bar’ and 2018’s ‘Cirocing.’ His talent was apparent was never apparent, but it was never truly backed up with any hits.
Singer, Lyta was discovered by Olamide while he was on the streets. During his stint with the label, he released the September 19, 2018 buzz singles, ‘Self Made’ and ‘Time,’ both featuring Olamide. He arrived at YBNL a little before Picazo, Yomi Blaize and Fireboy DML.
But after the rumblings of his YBNL exit from YBNL earlier in the year, he finally jumped on Naijaloaded TV to confirm the end of his mixed affiliation with YBNL. During the interview, he claimed that though he was paid between 50,000 and 80,000 for shows, he never had a written contract with the label.
He said, “I don’t have any deal with YBNL or Olamide. Olamide saw me on the street and helped me, I don’t have any written contract with him… YBNL and Olamide with always be part of my story. God bless Olamide, thank you for everything. No love lost.
“Yes, I was getting benefits. The used to pay me for shows. Sometimes 80k, 60k to 50k. But when I dropped my songs, ‘Temi’ and ‘Selfmade,’ I didn’t get anything.”
Olamide also responded and claimed that YBNL has a promotion calendar that Lyta was unwilling to follow. When other artists started getting their shine, the rapper claimed Lyta became unhappy. So, to avoid “bad energy” Olamide claims he unfollowed Lyta on Instagram.
While still a Law Student at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, the rapper with the ridiculously hilarious Mandarin gimmick signed to YBNL.
But sadly, only Xino had a quieter stint at YBNL than Chinko Ekun. He had the name, but it was never really backed up for one reason or the other – presumably schooling and schedules.
His biggest act at the label was probably the Day In The Studio freestyle. When he left the label in 2016, he posted the following message to Olamide, “@baddosneh gave me a voice when nobody did and put me on . Come rain come shine I am forever grateful for impact in my life!”
In 2018, Fireboy joined YBNL Nation as part of its third wave of artists alongside Lyta, Limerick, Picazo Rhap and Yomi Blaize. However, his signing was the most unheralded of his set. Asides Lyta, the other signees had some rep on social media as freestyle rappers.
In his personal journey, 2018 was also a turning point. On his own, he released singles like ‘King’ and ‘Sing’ alongside Oxlade. But then came December 2018, Olamide released a collaboration album with his signees. Again, nobody looked out for Fireboy till his song, ‘Jealous’ became the biggest on the album.
Since then, he has gone from strength to strength. His first solo album, Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps is one of the best-received ever in Nigerian pop. He is still the label and things look good. But then, we never know.
In 2016, he left the label after releasing his debut album, Gold on July 28, 2016.
Upon his exit from the label, the singer said this of his stint, “YBNL moved me. I had Sade before YBNL and it was already getting popular. When I got signed to the label, we shot the video and it became like a sensation everywhere.
“Getting signed to YBNL took me to London for the first time. That was in 2015. So, YBNL changed everything for me. I am grateful to Olamide for all the support and inspiration.”
Ololade Keshinro was signed to YBNL around April 2014. To commemorate the signing, Olamide wrote on social media that, “Lil kesh @mynameiskesh …. Time bomb lomoyen .. E go soon blow.”
He was right. Lil Kesh went on an almost peerless run between April 2014 and April 2016. By January 2016 when Lil Kesh lost the next rated award at the Headies to Reekado Banks, he truly had five back-to-back hits.
Some of those hits were, ‘Lyrically,’ ‘Shoki,’ ‘Shoki (Remix’),’ ‘Gbese,‘ and ‘Efejoku.’ This made the loss to Reekado a particularly tough pill to swallow.
On April 26, 2016, Lil Kesh released a statement confirming the expiration of his contract with YBNL. He also released one album with the label. ‘YAGI‘ was released in March 2016, just before his exit from the label.
In late 2018, he collaborated with Olamide on the controversial single, ‘Logo Benz.’
Phillip Kayode is not really an artist, but his case is peculiar. In 2013, Olamide released his album, Baddest Guy Ever Liveth and most of its songs were produced by the then-Pheelz Mr Producer. On the album, track three is titled ‘Rep Adugbo’ and it features Pheelz as an artist alongside Buckwyla.
Again, Pheelz is no artist but Olamide has been his vessel to success in Nigerian music – it all started with that moment.. For the 2010s, Pulse named him as second best producer of the decade.