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“WHO IS?” is a brand new segment were a public figure or celebrity is chosen by us or yourselves in any industry. We then follow up with a selection of people within that industry(their peers) to send us comments on WHO the NOMINATED person is to them, their thoughts and what has inspired them about the chosen person in at least 200words.
For some, the chosen person could be a mentor, a competitor, or someone aspired to or perhaps someone who motivates you to succeed, an inspiration or someone who has made a difference in the lives of others. It’s a chance to know more about the chosen people outside of what they are famously celebrated/known for.
To recommend your nominated person for this new inspiring series, send an email to email@example.com.
Today, our first WHO IS series features Mavin CEO, Nigeria’s most innovative producer in the 21st century, our very own Dr Dre and a loving friend to many as well as a socially approachable celebrity to thousands – Mr Michael Collins Ajereh. It’s Don Jazzy Again!
Here is a brief bio from WIKIPEDIA on Don Jazzy.
Michael Collins Ajereh (born November 26, 1982), better known as Don Jazzy, is a Nigerian Multi award-winning record producer, singer-songwriter, musician, former CEO of Nigerian record label Mo’ Hits Records founded in 2004 and current CEO of the Mavin Records. Born in Umuahia by Abia State Parents, who are from Isuikwuato L.G.A in Abia state.
His family moved to Ajegunle in Lagos state where he was raised, and graduated from Federal Government College Lagos. Michael always had a flair for music singing and playing the drums from the age of 4. He developed a passion for the bass guitar at the age of 12. He went on to study Business Management at the Ambrose Alli University Ekpoma in Edo state. He moved to London in the United Kingdom in 2000.
Various odd jobs followed including working at McDonalds and as a security guard. Already imbued with an intimate knowledge of traditional and percussion instruments, Don Jazzy further built on his musical knowledge during his UK stint. Finding fellow kindred spirits in the likes of Solek, JJC, Kas, The 419 squad andD’Banj, the gang spent unrelenting hours practising, recording and performing different types of music.
Jazzy’s appetite for a full-time career in music could no longer be satiated when, in 2004, he partnered with D’Banj to set up the Mo’ Hits label. Within two years, the prolific producer had wrapped up two albums (No Long Thing and Rundown/Funk You Up) with his former Mo’ Hits partner and was working on a third, Curriculum Vitae. By this time, he had already started becoming a household name with the trademark intro – It’s Don Jazzy Again!
In 2008 there were further production credits for the best selling album of that year, The Entertainer Don Jazzy repeated the trick with Wande Coal’s Mushin 2 MoHits, an album that was described as one of the best albums to ever come out of Nigeria.
He recently was rated as the 36th. “Most powerful celebrity in Africa” according to Forbes list.
Below are some of the comments from Don Jazzy’s peers in the Nigerian Music/Entertainment industry. Read on…
200 words is too much sef. Three words…. SUPER TALENTED PRODUCER. A lot of producers in this part of the world are actually beat makers (very good ones admittedly). Jazzy though is a PROPER producer who as well as making beats for a song, works with the artistes strength in order to bring out the best in them on the produced song. One thing though, he should stick to hooks, and allow the singers to sing (its all love still Jazzy…ha ha ha ha ha). His charitable side is also a huge plus.
DEJI AWOKOYA (GM,BEAT99.9FM)
Who is Don Jazzy, when I first met him back in 2005 I was wondering who this guy was with the walking stick and I recall he was so shy he could not look me in the eye. I was busy making early moves into mainstream Nigerian urban music scene with my old friend Ahmed Urberhtine. The Storm team had agreed to do a monthly live music event, combined with a DJ – bringing some connection between new artistes and the audience. Back then, it was a socially stratified Lagos, where our people were still indulging in self hate – not embracing majority of these artistes, in fact I was insulted or called nuts by many of my friends at the time. I think Jazzy stood out for two things, he insisted that D’banj and himself had to be paid, considering at the time Styl Plus, African China and others who were dominant in the music scene were not paid for what were showcases – this was anathema to me. However, he and D’banj insisted and we put them on, they killed the venue. I also asked him to produce the theme instrumental for Big Brother Nigeria and as I was learning he was a monster producer, in early 2006 he produced a remix of Dare’s Escalade, an all star remix that featured Alaye, Ikechukwu and D’banj on harmonica, it was becoming clear that he was a real hit maker.
What I still see is that Jazzy matured into perhaps the number one hit maker in the world between 2006-2010, with over 90 songs released, he produced them all, made almost all the hooks, also he worked the a & r process for all those records and he was always disciplined, focused on the music and trusting that if he got that right the rest would follow. To me its amazing how the kid that was so shy, he would hardly speak has now become the king of social media, as a fan I was saddened to see him and D’banj separate, as together they created history, however nobody can ever underestimate or question the quality and influence of Don Jazzy, for over 5 years now. I have been trying to make him make his first solo album and I already have the title “Introducing The Last Don”. I have enormous respect for his talent and his humility and I believe he has already acquired legendary status and somehow I believe that the future will shine brightly for Don Jazzy as he would say, It’s Don Jazzy Again & Again & Again, long may he reign the man I call, Africa’s Dr Dre.
OBI ASIKA (CEO STORM360)
For me, Don Jazzy is Nigeria’s hottest music producer. Well known for his inimitable beats, he’s also a burgeoning philanthropist; online, that is.
AZUH ARINZE, Esq (Publisher/Editor in Chief,YES International! Magazine)
DON Jazzy is a very talented genius who understands the industry and its demands but doesn’t want to work with me,tell him I said so. LOL And yes, Don Jazzy recently proved to me he is very selfless.
SOUND SULTAN (Artist)
I met Don Jazzy (and D’Banj) a few days after Big Brother Nigeria ended in May 2006. They were riding the ‘Tongolo’ fame at the time while I was still feeling like a reality star. I remember telling him I was a fan and him replying to say he was also a fan, and how he was gutted about my eviction. I laughed then because I didn’t know what about me there was to be a fan of really.
Anyway, the following months were pretty friendly and cordial between us whenever we ran into each other until sometime in 2008 or so when we met at Swe Bar. Dude walked past me and didn’t say hi. I stood beside him half through that night at the bar and he didn’t even look at me. Chai! I was mad. Of course, his career was at an incredible high at the time and he had started his “I don’t talk in public” phase. I swore never to talk to him anymore and for some reason, we never really did for the next couple of years.
Then sometime last year, he started saying hi again. Bought me champagne at clubs whenever he saw me (yes I’m that cheap) and generally loosened up.
But meeting him at a house Party at Rita Dominic’s early this year, sealed my opinion of him. Shy, extremely creative, intelligent and most importantly, generous. The over 4 hour long hangout, washed away all the misconceptions I had especially since I asked a lot of questions even covertly. He is a great guy who seems genuinely happy when people around him are happy and it all made me an even bigger fan.
The only problem I have is that I still refuse to believe I’m older than him. It can’t be possible. Ahn ahn!
EBUKA OBI-UCHENDU(Lawyer/TV Personality)
Don Jazzy is an Enigma. A highly creative and humble individual . He’s got a sense of humour which was revealed when he decided to reach out to his fans on social media.He’s one of the few celebrities who recognized the importance of social media very early on.
GBEMI OLATERU-OLAGBEGI On Air Personality(BEAT FM)
Who is Don Jazzy?. To me he is one of the best music producers/composers Africa has ever come across. A philanthropist par excellence, who cares about the plights of others. An extraordinarily gifted dude. A game changer also, whose emergence on the music scene has helped in putting Nigerian music on the world map.
ABIOLA ALOBA (CEO MAESTRO MEDIA)
DON JAZZY currently has 502,996 (at the time this was published) twitter followers and counting; 4k plus on Instagram and that’s not counting facebook. That says a lot about THE ENIGMA, DON JAZZY! So tell us, WHO DON JAZZY IS TO YOU. Comment away…there is enough room for your words.