Accra, Ghana – Michael Owusu Addo, widely known as Sarkodie, is a Ghanaian rapper, songwriter, and entrepreneur hailing from the vibrant city of Tema. Born on 10th July 1988, Sarkodie has made significant contributions to the Ghanaian music industry, earning him numerous accolades, including the prestigious Vodafone Ghana Music Award for “Artiste of the Decade.” Sarkodie’s talent and artistry have not gone unnoticed on the global stage, as he became the first recipient of BET’s Best International Flow Artist at the 2019 BET Hip Hop Awards.
At the core of Sarkodie’s success lies his versatile approach to music, allowing him to masterfully perform in various musical genres. Notably, he is considered one of the driving forces behind the Azonto genre and dance, cementing his position as one of Africa’s most successful and influential rappers.
Early Life and Emergence as an Underground Rapper
Sarkodie, the fourth of five children, was raised in Koforidua before his family relocated to Tema, where he began his schooling. After attending Tema Methodist Day Senior High School, he pursued a degree in graphic design at IPMC. It was during this time that Sarkodie’s passion for music emerged, as he ventured into the rap scene as an underground rapper. His breakthrough came when he participated in Adom FM’s renowned rap competition, Kasahare Level, where he caught the attention of Duncan Williams, his former manager from Duncwills Entertainment.
The Turning Point: Debut Album “Makye” and the Rise of Rapperholic
Sarkodie’s collaboration with established record producer Hammer of The Last Two paved the way for his debut album, “Makye,” with production assistance from Killbeatz and Jayso. The album garnered critical acclaim, and Sarkodie’s fame skyrocketed, leading to a memorable performance alongside Busta Rhymes at the Busta Rhymes Live in Ghana concert.
The success of “Makye” was followed by the release of his second studio album, “Rapperholic,” in 2012. This album further solidified his position in the industry and earned him his first BET nomination and win. His influence continued to expand, as he represented Africa in the BET Hip Hop Awards cypher, showcasing his extraordinary talent on the global stage.
Continued Success with “Sarkology” and “Highest”
In the years that followed, Sarkodie continued to impress with his third studio album, “Sarkology,” which featured collaborations with several renowned artists, further elevating his reputation as a multifaceted rapper. The launch of his record label, Sarkcess Music, in 2014 demonstrated his commitment to supporting other talented artists and expanding the scope of his contributions to the music industry.
The release of the album “Highest” in 2017 further solidified his status as a major force in African music, featuring prominent artists and showcasing Sarkodie’s unmatched prowess as a lyricist and performer.
The Ongoing Journey: “Black Love” and “No Pressure”
Never one to rest on his laurels, Sarkodie released the EP “Alpha” in 2019, and later the album “Black Love” the same year, exploring themes of love and relationships. His latest project, the album “No Pressure,” which came out in 2021, garnered widespread acclaim, featuring collaborations with top international and African artists.
Beyond the Music: Philanthropy and Business Ventures
Sarkodie’s passion for philanthropy led him to establish The Sarkodie Foundation, dedicated to supporting underprivileged children. He actively engages in charitable efforts, organizing campaigns to feed and provide essential items to children in need.
Aside from music, Sarkodie has ventured into various business enterprises, including owning the Sark by Yas clothing line. His impressive list of endorsements with top brands like Samsung, FanMilk Ghana, and Standard Chartered Bank showcases his strong influence in the business world.
Sarkodie’s extraordinary journey from an underground rapper to becoming one of Africa’s greatest hip hop artists is a testament to his talent, hard work, and dedication. As he continues to push boundaries and inspire millions of fans worldwide, the world eagerly anticipates the next chapters in the life and career of this Ghanaian rap icon.