Jidenna is a Nigerian-American rapper, singer-songwriter and a record producer. He is popularly known for his debut single ‘Classic Man’ released in 2015, and Bambi in 2017. Also, he released his debut studio album The Chief in 2017. Jidenna is a Stanford graduate, and his song was nominated in the 58th Grammy Award.
Jidenna Theodore Mobisson was born on May 4, 1985, in Wisconsin, US. He was born to Tama and Oliver Mobisson. Tama was a white accountant and Oliver was a Nigerian lecturer who hail from Imo State. He grew up in Enugu, Nigeria where his father lectured. Later on, he moved back with his family to the US at age 6.
He attended the Milton Academy and graduated in 2003. Subsequently, he chose Stanford University over Harvard University and went on to study Sound Engineering. Along the line, he switched to Ritualistic Arts and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 2008.
Jidenna Personal Life
Jidenna is currently single. He lives in East Flatbush Brooklyn, New York. His dress style is a combination of European and West African designs and this has always made him exceptional.
Jidenna Early Career
While he was in college, he co-founded a rap group Black Spadez with some of his friends. Along the line he was writing, composing and arranging songs. Together in the group, he released songs with Black Spadez as a final project at the Milton Academy.
After Stanford, Jidenna worked as a tutor teaching student in the US. While he did that, he also pursued his music career and along the line, he signed a deal with Janelle Monae’s Wondaland Records. Later, in 2015, he released the popular song Classic Man. Classic Man gained massive acceptance in the States.
Albums And Songs
Altogether, he has released 2 studio albums, 8 music videos, 2 extended plays (Eps) and twelve singles.
Wondaland Presents: The Eephsus
This is the second Extended Play (EP) by the artists signed to Wondaland Records. The recording started in 2014, and in 2015, it was released by Epic Records and Sony Music.
In February 2015, Jidenna released his first official single Classic Man ft GianArthur. And in March, his second single from the EP, was released. Yoga (2015) was done by Him and Janelle Monae.
Classic Man debuted at number 49 on Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop airplay chart. The album also won awards and was nominated at the 58th Grammy Awards.
His debut studio album The Chief was released on February 17, 2017 and was distributed by Epic Records. The chief was dedicated to his father based on the relationship he had with him before his death. It featured guest appearances from his fellow label mates, Janelle Monae, Roman GianArthur, St. Beauty and Nana Kwabena. The album garnered positive reviews on Jidenna’s charismatic delivery, and his storytelling narrative style.
The Chief has four singles and it debuted at number 38 on the Billboard 200. The singles include; Long Live the Chief (2015), Chief Don’t Run (2016), Little Bit More (2016) and The Let Out, (2017).
It was a mixture of hip-hop, pop, R&B genre. It was executive produced by Jidenna and Kwabena. The assistant producers include GianArthur, Horowitz, Frank Dukes, Mark Williams, Volta e.t.c.
85 to Africa
On August 23, 2019, Jidenna released his second studio album under the Wondaland Records and Epic Records. It featured guest appearances from Goldlink, St.Beauty, Mr Eazi, Mereba and Seun Kuti.
It was produced by Jidenna, 7G, Curtis Austin, Mike Keys, Salem Brown, e.t.c The singles are; Tribe (2019), Sufi Woman (2019), Zodi (2019), Sou Sou (2019).
Some of his songs include;
- Yoga, 2015
- Extraordinaire, 2015
- Safari, 2017
- Out of Body, 2017
- Helicopter/Beware, 2017
- A Bull’s Tale, 2017
- Some Kind of Way, 2017
- Trampoline, 2017
- The Let Out, 2017
- Spy Candy, 2017
- White Niggas, 2017
- 2point, 2017
- Little Bit More, 2017
- Adaora, 2017
- Vaporiza, 2019
- Pretty and Afraid, 2019
- Babouche, 2019
Awards And Recognition
Jidenna is an award-winning artiste. His song Classic Man was nominated for a Grammy Award under the Best Rap/Sung Collaboration category in 2016. Also, he is a 4-times Soul Train Music Award winner. These awards include;
- Best New Artist, Soul Train Music Award, 2015
- Song of the Year, ‘Classic Man’ ft Roman GianArthur’, Soul Train Music Award, 2015
- Video of the Year, ‘Classic Man’ ft Roman GianArthur’, Soul Train Music Award, 2015
- Best Dance Performance, ‘Yoga’ ft Janelle Monae, Soul Train Music Award, 2015
Jidenna Net Worth
According to Naijaquest.com, Jidenna’s net worth is estimated at $1 million.
“A classic man is a distinguished man. He cares about taste and his craft. He’s all about the simple model that I live by – eat, drink, be swanky, and have fun getting the job done. He makes sure that he’s excellent in all things and that he cares about his neighborhood immensely.”
“It’s better to do your purpose imperfectly than to do someone else’s purpose perfectly.”
“The root word of ‘currency’ is ‘current.’ Let’s move this money around.”
“My prayer is that every black celebrity that’s walking the red carpet starts to wear black designers only.”
“If one door is closed, break a window anyway.”
“…There are agreements and compromises to be made in every relationship. Most of all, I believe in love and honesty as the foundation…”
“All music is music with a message. Whatever it preaches, it is a message.”
“Whatever we want out of ourselves and out of our country is always just a little bit more.”
Entrepreneurial Lessons From The Life Of Jidenna
Choose your style and remain classic.
Jidenna is known for his European cum African style of dressing. With this, people look out for his distinctive style time after time. A business lesson about this for entrepreneurs is that we should choose our brand and maintain a business culture.
Follow your dreams and passion.
Jidenna switched from Sound Engineering to Ritualistic Arts. That way, he was able to learn the rudiments of his music career. Entrepreneurs need to follow their business dream; you might need to take some bold steps, and make some challenging decisions.
Photo Credit: Medium.com, Mtv.com, Huffpost, Ethnicity of Celebs, Pinterest, Capital Xtra, and Madame Noire.