E.L, Ghana’s current Artiste of the Year

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During the 2016 edition of the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards, when EL defied the odds and won the award for Artiste of the Year against the likes of VVIP, Sarkodie, Bisa KDei, Stonebwoy, SP and Kofi Sarpong, many were those who felt that even though he had also done well within the year, the award should have rather gone to Bisa Kdei. No matter what the case may be, EL is a very talented artiste and it is for this reason I have decided to celebrate him in this week’s edition of Celebrations with Ebenezer Narh Affum by kind courtesy of Flex Newspaper.

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I believe EL is an Ewe but surprisingly, he sings more in the Ga Language than the Ewe Language which sometimes baffles me. EL known in private life as Elom Adabla was born on June 28, 1983 and apart from the fact that he is a Rapper, he can also be identified as a Record producer and a Sound Engineer.

EL grew up in Dansoman and began his education at the St. Martin De Porres School also in Dansoman where he excelled as a top student. Due to a transfer, he completed his Junior Secondary School education at the Jack and Jill School. During his Senior Secondary School days, he discovered his musical talent. After high school, he pursued a degree in Economics and Political Science at the University of Ghana. In spite of the workload of EL as a student at the University of Ghana offering Economics and Political Science, he signed onto Jayso’s Skillions Records in his first year.

As at that time, Skillions Records had other notable artistes such as Ball J, Gemini, Kevin Beats, Killmatic and Lil Shaker. EL helped Jayso co-produce the Skillionaires Demotape. However, after graduating from the university, the Skillions broke up and EL became a solo artist. He acquired a studio in Asylum Down and began working on a new mixtape. He went as far as releasing a single, “Chale (So Fli)”, with Jay Foley, Wolf and Kwaku T (remix). However the mixtape was never released.

EL relocated to a better studio at Osu, and invested all his available funds in acquiring state-of-the-art equipment much to the chagrin of family and friends. Signed onto BBNZ Live, EL released his double album, Something Else on June 1, 2012 and that album could boast of different varieties of music inspired from diverse sources.

He also released the first in the series of BAR (Best African Rapper) album which is mainly to offer underground Hip Hop artistes the opportunity to be heard on a bigger platform. The first BAR album was released on May 20, 2014 and featured artistes such as Edem, Sarkodie, Joey B, C-Real, Gemini, Telvin, Frozen, Lil Shaker, Stargo, P. K. and Dex Kwasi. The first BAR album was a huge success and so it was followed by BAR 2 in 2015. Off the BAR 2, EL released three songs ‘All Black’, ‘State Of The Nation’ and ‘King Without A Crown and on August 29,2015, he followed up with the B.A.R 2 concert featuring Wanlov, Ko-Jo Cue ,DJ Mic Smith and a host of others.

His second studio album entitled Elom which has been released can boast of excellent singles such as “Mi Naa Bo Po”, “Watch The Way You Dey Waka” and “Nkrumah Pt. 2” featuring highly respected recording artist Obrafour. On April 15, 2016 Lauryn Hill headlined a concert dubbed Ms. Lauryn Hill Presents Diaspora Calling! in association with Tidal at Kings Theater.

The concert was intended to celebrate the rich tapestry of artists from African Diaspora and had great artist from West Africa on stage namely El and Stonebwoy from Ghana, also Wondaboy and Mr. Eazi from Nigeria performing to a massive crowd. EL has produced hit songs for many elite hip hop, hiplife and R&B performers, such as Sarkodie (“You Go Kill Me”, “Dangerous”), D-Black (“Get On the Dance floor”), Reggie Rock stone (“Rock stone’s Office”), Asem (“Check Your Weight”), Geelex (“Bend Your Body”) and many more.

In 2010 and 2011, EL heralded the Global Azonto Madness by producing most of the hit songs, including “You Go Kill Me”, “Dangerous”, and his own hit singles, “Obuu Mo” and “Kaalu”. During the 2015 4Syste Music Video Awards, EL was nominated as Most Influential Artiste alongside Guru, Vvip, Sarkodie, Shatta Wale, R2Bees, Stonebwoy and Fuse ODG and for the Best Photography Video award, El’s K.W.A.C had contenders in R2bees – Lobi, Shatta Wale ft. Patoranking – Romantic, Stonebwoy ft MzVee – Come Over, D Black – Setewa, Sarkodie ft. Aka – Special Someone, Fuse ODG – Only and M.anifest – Forget them.

For the Most Popular Video category, EL’s Shelele was also nominated. For the Best Edited Video, El’s K.W.A.C had to compete against the likes of Sarkodie – New Guy, R2Bees – Makoma, VVIP – Skolom, Stonebwoy ft. MzVee – Come Over, C-Real – Shine and Episode – Avata. He was able to win the Best Edited Video award. He also won the award for Best Special Effect video. He was also nominated in the Best Hip Hop Video, Best Male Video as well as Best Choreography video categories.

In the 2012 edition of the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards, EL was nominated in the New Artiste of the Year category alongside Atumpan, Racquel, Stay Jay, D Cryme and Zigi. He was also nominated for Best Rapper of the Year category alongside Manifest, Sarkodie, Okyeame Kwame, Edem and Trigmatic. He also got nominated in the Best Newcomer category of the 2012 Channel O Music Video Awards.

During the 2016 Ghana Music Awards , EL was nominated in the Hip-life/Hip-hop Artiste of the year category alongside Pappy Kojo, Omar Sterling, Sarkodie, VVIP and Guru and in the Vodafone Most Popular Song Of The Year category ,his Mi Naa Bo Po song was in contention for the award against Skolom by VVIP featuring Sena Dagadu, Mansa by Bisa Kdei, Aporsor by Nicholas Omane Acheampong, Go Higher by Stonebwoy, Ekikime by Wisa featuring Luther and Susuka by Kofi Kinaata.

EL was also in contention for the Artiste of the Year awards alongside VVIP, Sarkodie, Bisa Kdei, Stonebwoy and SP Kofi Sarpong. EL was also nominated in the Album of the Year, Producer of the Year, Afro Pop Song of the Year, Hiplife Song of the Year, Hip Pop Song of the Year, Music Video of the Year and Best Rapper of the Year categories. Off all the categories in which EL was nominated in for the 2016 VGMAs , he won the awards for Afropop Song of the year ,Hiplife/Hip Hop Artiste of the year ,Music Producer of the year, Music Video of the year as well as the ultimate Artiste of the year.

Other nominations received by EL include 2010 African Movie Academy Awards: Best Original Soundtrack ‘A sting in a tale’, 2010 Ghana Movie Awards: Best Score Award, Checkmate And more and 2011 Ghana Music Awards: Hip-hop Song of the Year award, “Get On the Dance Floor”, Producer.

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