Check out his from Grass to Grace life story below! Wow...
Oritsefemi was born in Ajegunle, one of Nigeria’s most popular and notorious slums. Despite this labels, the small community has managed to produce some of Nigeria’s most notable personalities from singers to disc jockeys and many notable footballers.
What made a boy exposed to poverty and crime at a young age become a star? Determination, perseverance, hard work, vision and a dream to be among the greats that persevered despite the hardships of growing up in the slums of Ajegunle.
Oritsefemi Majemite Ekele was that little boy that grew up in Ajegunle and all he had was a voice. Although rebellious and stubborn, he refused to be a criminal. All he wanted to be was a singer. He sang in a church at a young age. He benefitted from the music school in Ajegunle owned by Johnny Napp, who often invites Jamaican artists to nurture the growing talents in the community. No wonder one of his mentor is Sizzla Kalonji.
His father wanted him to take after him, to be an engineer, Femi has he was fondly called, knew from a young age what he wanted, it is either music or nothing else.
He started his music ambitions as one half of the band ‘Junglist’ where he and a friend made some tracks and also released an album together. Later, Oritsefemi went solo, a decision that later made him a household name.
His big break came, when he released a remake of his idol Fela Kuti’s song, ‘Double Wahala’, a song that is still one of the biggest in the Nigeria music industry. His rendition of the song earned him two nominations at the 2014 City People Entertainment Awards, winning the award for Most Popular Song of the Year. He also won the Indigenous Artist of the Year award at the 2014 Nigeria Entertainment Awards.
After that, it was goodbye to poverty for the young man that once lived in a ‘pako house’.
He kept on making music and his fan base continued to grow not just in Nigeria but all over the world. At some point it was important for him to go on a world tour. Not knowing how big a brand he has become around the world; his tour in Europe, United Kingdom, Asia and America were all sold out.
And now, Oritsefemi is on his third world tour. He has six studio albums to his name. His latest single ‘Ongbalarami’ is one of the biggest songs out there right now.
How did a little boy from Tolu in Ajegunle became the toast of the world? He once said; ‘I just kept doing music even when no one knew me, I was passionate about music and I am still very much passionate about my trade. I don’t know if there is something else I’m good at aside music’.
Still very humble, he never forgets where he came from. He is the founder of ‘Feed A Child’ in Nigeria. A non-profitable organization, helping in feeding children of the less privileged. Maybe because he came from poverty, he started feeding others as soon as he could feed himself.
His dream is to be known all over the world for his music, and with his world tour, he is gradually achieving that dream. He is also working on collaborations with international artistes. He wants to take over the world.
Despite past controversies, today we see Oritsefemi as a more mature version of his former self, both musically and in his personal life.
Earlier this year more evidence of that growth came in a form of a rebranding effort in which he changed his management team and made a huge location change.
The result is a cleaner more professional looking Oritsefemi that appeals to the fashion forward fans while still paying homage to his street credibility. The perfect role model for young ones looking to get out of the slums and succeed.
Oritsefemi also proved to the fans just how much he has grown when the news of his marriage broke on the internet. No one saw that coming, but it was a pleasant surprise to his fans. He married a PR expert, the lady he always refers to as his queen.
The boy from the slums of Ajegunle has turned his life around and he is now making waves all over the world with his talent.
Oritsefemi inspires a lot of youth in the ghetto with his slum-to-success story. They believe if their role model can make it, they too can make it. And the only way to make it, is through hard work.
Oritsefemi is one of the few musicians that have enjoyed longevity in the music industry. With everything he is working on at the moment, it is safe to say, we will still be dancing to his songs for a long time.