5 Nigerian musicians that changed their stage name and why they did it
If a survey was conducted and people were asked if they would rather keep their birth names or choose something different, many would change their names. Not necessarily because they are bad or unwanted, but because choosing a name for yourself can often feel very validating. It gives you the power to provide yourself with an external identity that mirrors your internal one or simply call yourself something you like.
This is the reality that many celebrities live as only a few of them stick to their birth names, but sometimes even after they have chosen their desired monikers, reasons arise that make them pick a new one. Here are five Nigerian artistes that have changed their names:
In 2016, one of Nigeria’s most prominent singers informed the public that he was officially changing his stage name from 2face Idibia to 2Baba. When asked the motivation for this change, the ‘African Queen’ star stated that he was now a more mature person and a proud ‘Baba’ to many children. This change didn’t come as too much of a shock to the singer’s fans as he had been nicknamed 2Baba long before he made the announcement.
2. Cruel Santino
On the 19th of January 2019, the Nigerian alternative singer, songwriter, and creative director announced on his Twitter account that he was changing his name from Santi to Cruel Santino because of some copyright issues he was facing. The singer stated jokingly that there was ‘one man in Spain who didn’t want to ‘free the name for him.’
Grammy Award winner and Nigeria’s very own star boy informally changed his name last year at the peak of his career after fans had suggested that he do so since he was no longer a kid like the name ‘Wizkid’ insinuated. Since then, the thirty-year-old singer and father of three beautiful boys has been referred to as Big Wiz, although his discography still bears his original stage name.
4. Kizz Daniel
In 2017, the singer announced that he was leaving his record label, G-Worldwide, to start a new one called FLYBOY Inc. His former record label later sued him for breaching his contract. He was not found guilty of any of the crimes he was sued for. In May of the following year, he announced that he had changed his stage name from Kiss Daniel to Kizz Daniel because the latter was owned by his former record label based on their contract.
5. Mr. P and Rude Boy
In 2016, the ‘Busy Body’ twins and makers of many of the party hits of the early 2000s made headlines after news and videos of their disagreements became public. After a short-lived reconciliation, the twins split, stating irreconcilable differences. As a result, the duo, formerly known as P-square, had to take separate names. Peter Okoye became Mr. P, and Paul became Rude Boy.
Many fans have described the split as the saddest in the Nigerian music scene, stating that the twins have since been unable to be separately the hitmakers that they were together.
Thankfully, the twins are back together, to the relief of their fans.