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Shatta Wale (Ghanaian Dancehall Artist)

Shatta Wale (Ghanaian Dancehall Artist)


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Charles Nii Armah Mensah Jnr, (born 17 October 1982), known professionally as Shatta Wale (formerly Bandana), is a Ghanaian singer, songwriter, actor and CEO of Shatta Movement Empire.[1] He won Artiste of the Year at the 2014 Vodafone Ghana Music Awards for his best known single “Dancehall King”, and has appeared in films such as Never Say Never,[2] The trial of Shatta Wale,[3] and Shattered Lives.[4]

Having achieved street credibility in a fairly undeveloped Ghanaian dancehall genre at the time, he achieved popularity with his 2004 single, “Moko Hoo”, which features Tinny. Then known in the industry as Bandana, the song earned Him a Ghana Music Awards nomination. There afterward, Bandana went missing in the music industry for nearly a decade until rebranding himself in 2013. He began releasing music under a new name, Shatta Wale, under his record label (Shatta Movement Records).[5]

In 2014, he peaked at number 38 on‘s “Top 100 Most Influential Ghanaian” Awards chart.[6][7] He has since appeared on the chart each year. He was ranked “Most Influential Musician” on social media in 2017.[8] He won 8 awards at the 3Music Awards in 2019 and also the most awarded dancehall artist in Africa.


Early life[edit]

Charles Nii Armah Mensah Jr. was born in Accra, Ghana at the Police Hospital on 17 October 1982. The son of a couple from Accra and the Volta Region of Ghana, his father is Charles Nii Armah Mensah Sr, a politician, businessman and legal practitioner. Shatta Wale attended Seven Great Princes Academy at Dansoman, a suburb in Accra, where he demonstrated an affinity for arts and acted in a popular drama series, By the Fireside, at the National Theatre of Ghana.[9] Growing up, he lived with his family in LaterbiokorshieDansoman and then later Korle Gonno during his formative years. In a Facebook live video, Wale stated that he did not enjoy motherly love and care at the early stages of his life because a pastor caused a separation between his parents which made him remain under his father’s care and later ending up on the streets.[10] His mother is Elsie Evelyn Avemegah.

As a child, his father introduced him to the Jamaican culture by playing Reggae records in the house and also continuously travelling with him to the UK to meet his relatives who were half Jamaicans. These exposures made him develop a love for music at a tender age. His intense passion to do music made him lose interest in schooling but his father forced him to complete his high school education later in the Volta Region of Ghana which had initially kicked off at the Winneba Secondary School in the Central Region of Ghana. Even in the school and right after school he pursued his musical dream but his father did not agree and wanted him to become a lawyer, this led to a misunderstanding between the two eventually tearing down their beautiful relationship. Shatta Wale lived in almost all the ghettos (Nima) in Accra just to survive: “There were many times I slept without food. I have been through all the hustle in life, I mean hell. I have lived with the people and became one of their own. No wonder my music easily resonates with the people. I am thankful to God for making me see the daylight.” Stated in an interview.

Shatta Wale later went to Jamaica to polish and master his dance hall craft. “Every boy in Ghana doing dance hall came for tutelage from me before mastering the dance hall genre. So no wonder my fans call me King because they know the history of the modern dance hall in Ghana” Shatta Wale stated in an interview.


2004–: Career beginnings[edit]

His musical career began during his high school days at the Winneba Secondary School where he learned to play keyboard and received routine vocal training at the school’s music class department, then known as Doggy. After secondary school, he then took time to work on his music. Having achieved street credibility in a fairly undeveloped Ghanaian dance hall genre at the time, he soon gained recognition with his hit single, “Moko Hoo”, which featured fellow Ghanaian musician Tinny in 2004 using Bandana as his stage name. The song earned him a nomination at the Ghana Music Awards that year. Bandana followed with the hit songs “No Problem” and “Obaa Yaa”. At this point, he was receiving heavy rotation on radio and was backed by a fan base that shot him into the mainstream Ghanaian music scene. Despite his prominence, Bandana went missing in the music circus in Ghana.


With a re-branded name from Bandana to Shatta Wale, he started a new career which largely bothers on dance hall in a Jamaican style of production in Nima, a small community in Accra, Ghana, a place that harbors a lot of Muslim youth and ghettos. It was there he amassed a fan base, who were influenced by him and felt empowered by his songs.[11] Wale released songs almost everyday on his social media handles free to download and would perform them in small communities in Accra mostly in Nima. He started gaining slow attention again with songs like “Telephone No” “Anastasia” “My Eyes Pon Di Money” and others. This approach revived dance hall in Ghana, a genre which had been left abandoned. The likes of Root Eye, General Marcus, Yoggy Doggy and others years ago had started but could not breakthrough. Shatta Wale gives credit to the likes of Terry Bonchaka and Yoggy Doggy for nurturing him when he began his dance hall journey. “It was under their tutelage that they told me I was going to blow up and that my style is so unique” he stated in an interview on Peace FM. He explained in an interview with King Lagazee why he had been less active and what the reason for his decreased popularity was.A lot of people wan mi fi dead but mi dehya. I know my fans have missed me but mi naa dead. I was learning how to produce beats, mix and master and also perfecting my craft. So basically that is what is keeping me away.

– Wale, then known as Bandana, on his decreased visibility in the music industry


Largely producing and mastering majority of his songs such as “Havana”, “Shatta City”, “Enter the Net”, “Everybody Likes My Tin”, and “Dance hall King”, the latter of which became his biggest hit after his comeback. The tracks were well received in Ghana and globally with critics talking about the influence of Jamaican dance hall as many Ghanaians were only used to the type of dance hall called Hip-life with a touch of ragga.Wale then successfully toured Canada and United States in 2014.

The Guardian qualified “Wine Ya Waist” featuring Davido among its five must listened new tracks from around the world.[12] By 2015, has released songs [13] that were receiving international awards and nominations, some of which includes; International Reggae & World Music Awards, Nigeria Entertainment AwardsMOBO. He toured Europe in 2015, and also shared the same stage with P-SquareFlavor and others at the Wembley Arena in London.


In a heated political atmosphere, Wale became one of the most powerful men in Ghana as two biggest political parties, National Democratic Congress[14] and the New Patriotic Party used his hit songs; “Mahama Paper” and “Kakai” to run their campaign in the 2016 general election. In a desultory conversation with an interviewer, Wale stated that: There were some attempts by some members from the political parties to coax him to endorse their party but he did not cling because of his fans. There were banners in town bearing Shatta Movement for NDC but Wale in a Facebook post made it clear that he has not endorsed any political party and all parties running their campaign under the Shatta Movement Banner should desist or face legal action. However, Wale did not hesitate to perform for any of the political parties as his service was demanded.

In 2017, Shatta Wale was named at 27 in the C. Hub Magazine’s 100 most influential creatives an annual cumulative rating for Black creatives around the world by the magazine. The list included the likes of AkonStormzyAnthony Joshua among many other black greats.

Songs released from After the Storm album like “Mahama Paper”, “Baby (Chop Kiss)”, “Biegya (Open Fire)”, “Hol’It”, and “Kakai” were successful in Ghana. Wale stayed atop the charts locally and also had “Hol’It” top BBC Radio 1Xtra‘s Afroboss Top 5 songs chart.[15] Rockstar Games co-founder Sam Houser also said he was deeply impressed by the popularity of “KAKAI” and that it made waves within the African community in the United States and beyond, including topping several dance hall charts globally. For that, he stated his wish that bureaucrats would confirm “Kakai” to appear in the upcoming Grand Theft Auto 6. If confirmed, Wale could earn up to $744,000 annually.[16]

In 2017, he toured the US to promote After the Storm, then traveled to Jamaica to shoot videos for projects he had jointly done with some producers there.

Wale signed with Zylofon Music in January 2018.[17] He released his third album, Reign, on 13 October at the Fantasy Dome in Accra, and used the occasion to propose to his longtime girlfriend Michy on stage.[18] The album achieved a record for a Ghanaian act by appearing on the Billboard Top World Albums Chart, placing sixth.[19]


In 2019 he also had a collaboration with Beyoncé titled “Already” on her album The Lion King: The Gift which climbed international charts and was nominated at the Grammy Awards.[20] He had the most packed concert in the history of Ghana music with his Reign Concert as the only performer.[21] Shatta Wale also featured on the compilation album of the Reggae Edition of The Tropical house Cruises to Jamaica.[22] On July 31, 2020, Shatta wale was featured in Beyonce’s Already music video.[23][24]


He was the first Ghanaian to organize a digital concert on YouTube which was dubbed the Faith Concert. The concert was organized to bring hope to Ghanaians and his global audience at large during the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.[25][26] He was selected by The Ministry of Communications, Ghana, alongside Highlife musician Kuami Eugene as the headline artistes for the Covid-19 app virtual launch concert[27] held on Monday April 13, 2020.[28] On Saturday 17 October 2020, he threw a massive birthday party, which saw attendance by family and friends at his East Legon residence to mark his 36th birthday.[29]


Mayor of WorcesterJoseph Petty, presented Shatta Wale with the Key to the City on 8 July 2017, in recognition of his contributions to the arts.[30]

On 18 March 2018, Wale was presented an honoree award for his outstanding contribution to reggae in Ghana and globally at the 37th Annual Chicago Music Awards (CMA), in conjunction with the 36th International Reggae & World Music Awards (IRAWMA).[31]

Wale received an honoree award on 11 May 2018, alongside SizzlaQueen IfricaChronixxDaddy Fresh, Winning Jah, Jah CureSean Paul, Ben Priest and other personalities at the Obaland Royal Awards in Nigeria. The awards were held by an entertainment firm owned by King Ewuare II of Benin CityEdo State.[32][33] The Obaland plaque was reportedly valued by specialized anthropologists and museum critics in Benin City, and declared to be worth US$34 million.[34]


In 2014, Wale became a brand ambassador for Guinness Ghana Breweries.[35] and as the brand ambassador for Rush Energy Drink.[36][37][38]

In September 2017, Kasapreko Company, producers of several alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages in Ghana, unveiled Wale as their newest brand ambassador for Storm Energy Drink.[39]

On 17 November 2017, Shatta Wale signed a deal with Boss Baker Beef Roll as the brand ambassador.[40] Infinix Ghana, a smartphone company, on Wednesday, September 11, 2019 announced Shata Wale as its Brand Ambassador[41]




This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items with reliable sources.

2016AromaCurrency Year Mixtape[46]
2016Like YouAfter the Storm[47]
2016LongtimeAfter the Storm[48]
2016Dancehall King (Part 2)After The Storm[49]
2017Affi Di MoneyUnknown[51]
2017Shame On YouUnknown[52]
2017DisasterAfrican Takeover[53]
2017PatorankingAfrican Takeover[54]
2018True BelieverUnknown[56]
2018Ego Taya DemUnknown[57]
2018Thunder FireUnknown[60]
2018Don’t Baby My babyReign
2018Bend OverReign
2018I RegretReign
2018If i SeeReign
2018Give Dem SomethingReign
2018Sister SisterReign
2018Mama StoriesReign
2018My Mind Is Made UpReign
2018One Way StyleReign
2018My LevelUnknown
2019Shatta with 9 (feat. 9TYZ)Unknown
2019Packaging (feat. Medikal)Unknown
2019Run 4 yuh lifeUnknown
2019No LookUnknown[61]
2019Weather ForecastUnknown[62]
2019I Hate NonsenseUnknown[63]
2020Miss MoneyUnknown[65]
2020Ahodwo Las Vegas ft Kofi Jamar, Amerado, Ypee, Kweku Flick, King Paluta, Phrimpong & PhaizeUnknown[66]
2020Party with the Stars (Feat. Munga Honorable, Tifa)Unknown[67]


This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items with reliable sources.

2020Hajia Bintu (feat. Ara B & Captan)Shatta Wale & PKMI[68]
2019IslandYaw Skyface[69]
201My levelSesan[70]
2018Bullet ProofSesan[72]
2017Nobody Go TalkRex[73]
2017Life ChangerRex[74]
2017WaittiWill Drey[75]
2017AyooSire Chopperson[76]
2017Taking OverSire Chopperson[77]
2016Shatta StoryMexx Studio[78]
2016Krom Aye Shi (Town Make Hot)Lex MacCarthy[79]
2016Too SweetWill Drey[80]
2016Story to TellPrince Dovlo[81]
2016Too Much ChemicalPrince Dovlo[82]
2016Kill Dem with PrayersLex MacCarthy[83]
2016KakaiXpress Philms
2016Baby (Chop Kiss)Lex MacCarthy[84]
2013Every Body Like My TinPressPlay Vidz48
2015Gather AroundLex MacCarthy49


This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items with reliable sources.

2016Shattered LivesN/A[85]
2014Never Say NeverN/A[86]
2018“The Trial of Shatta Wale(Kejetia Vs Makola)”Shatta Wale

Awards and nominations[edit]

In 2014, Shatta Wale was nominated for the Maiden GN Bank Awards[87][88] as the People’s Choice Male Musician of the year.[89] He was also named the 38th Most Influential Ghanaian by E-TV Ghana in 2015 in their annual survey of influential people in Ghana. He is currently the most Awarded Dancehall artist in Africa and one of the most awarded dancehall artist in the world.[90][91]

2013Ghana Music AwardsReggae Dancehall Song of the Year – Shatta CityShatta WaleNominated[92][93]
2014Channel O Music Video AwardsMost Gifted Ragga Dancehall Video“Everybody Likes My Ting”Nominated[94][95]
4Syte TV Music Video AwardsBest Reggae/Dancehall VideoWon[96]
Most Popular VideoWon
2014 Nigeria Entertainment AwardsAfrican Artiste of the YearWon[97]
African Muzik Magazine AwardsBest Male West AfricaNominated[98]
Best Dancehall ArtisteNominated
Ghana Music AwardsArtiste of the YearWon[99]
Best Collaboration of the Year“Hot Cake”
Pope Skinny feat. Shatta Wale
Reggae/Dancehall Song of the YearNominated
D2 feat. Shatta Wale
“Dancehall King”Won
Nigerian Entertainment AwardsAfrican Artiste of the YearWon[100]
BASS AwardsBest Performer of the YearWon[101][102]
Best Collaboration of the yearD2 ft. Shatta Wale – “Fever”Nominated
Shatta Wale ft. D Black – “Ina the Party”Nominated
Best Video Dancehall“Like My Thing”Won
Dancehall Artiste of the yearShatta Wale – “Enter the Net”Won
International Reggae and World Music AwardsBest New EntertainerShatta WaleWon[103]
Jigwe AwardsJigwe Musician of the YearShatta WaleWon[104]
Ghana DJ AwardsDJ’s Song of the YearShatta Wale – Dancehall KingWon[105]
2015African Entertainment AwardsBest African Reggae / Dancehall ArtisteShatta WaleNominated[106][107]
African Muzik Magazine AwardsBest Dancehall ArtisteShatta WaleNominated[108][109][110][111][112]
Swish HQ UK AwardsBest SongShatta Wale & Sonni BaliNominated[113][114]
International Reggae and World Music AwardsBest Music Video – You Can’t Touch MeShatta WaleNominated[115]
3G AwardsPublisher’s Choice AwardShatta WaleWon[116]
MOBO AwardsBest African ActShatta WaleNominated[117][118]
GN Bank AwardsPeople’s Choice Male MusicianShatta WaleWon[119]
2016Blogging and Social Media AwardsArtiste with the Best Social Media PresenceShatta WaleWon[120]
Golden Movie Awards AfricaGolden DiscoveryShatta WaleWon[121][122]
Africa Europe DJ Awards (Italy)Best Song of the Year – KakaiShatta WaleWon[123]
Nigeria Entertainment AwardsAfrican Male Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[124][125][126]
Afrimma AwardsDancehall Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[127][128][129]
Africa Youth Choice AwardsArtiste of the YearShatta WaleNominated[130][131]
City People Entertainment AwardsGhana Musician of the Year Award – MaleShatta WaleWon[132]
Africa Entertainment Awards – USBest Dancehall ArtisteShatta waleWon[133][134]
International Reggae and World Music AwardsBest African Song/Entertainer – Chop KissShatta waleWon[135][136]
International Reggae and World Music AwardsBest Music Video -Chop KissShatta WaleNominated[135][136]
Ghana Kids Choice AwardsBest Dancehall Icon of the YearShatta WaleWon[137][138]
African Royal AwardsBest International ActShatta WaleWon[139]
Ghana DJ AwardsDJ’s Song of the Year – KakaiShatta WaleWon[140][141]
African Entertainment Legends AwardsAfrican Dancehall Act of the YearShatta WaleNominated[142][143]
Ghana Music Awards UKMusic Producer of the YearShatta Wale (Da Maker)Won[144]
Ghana Music Awards UKMost Popular Song – KakaiShatta WaleWon[144]
Most Popular Song – Chop KissNominated
Reggae / Dancehall Song of the Year – KakaiNominated
Reggae / Dancehall Song of the Year – Hol’ ItNominated
Reggae / Dancehall Artiste of the YearWon
Album of the YearAfter the Storm – Shatta WaleNominated
Artiste of the YearShatta WaleNominated
Ghana Music Awards UK 2018Raggae/Dancehall song of the YearShatta WaleNominated[145]
WatsUp African Music Video AwardsBest West African VideoChop Kiss – Shatta WaleNominated[146]
WatsUp African Music Video AwardsBest African Male VideoChop Kiss – Shatta WaleNominated[146]
WatsUp African Music Video AwardsBest African PerformanceAfter The Storm – Shatta WaleNominated[146]
WatsUp African Music Video AwardsBest African Reggae/Dancehall VideoChop Kiss – Shatta WaleWon[146]
4Syte Music Video AwardsBest Reggae/Dancehall VideoShatta WaleWon[147][148]
4Syte Music Video AwardsMost Popular VideoShatta WaleNominated
4Syte Music Video AwardsBest Directed VideoShatta WaleNominated
4Syte Music Video AwardsBest Story Line VideoShatta WaleNominated
4Syte Music Video AwardsBest Male VideoShatta WaleNominated
4Syte Music Video AwardsMost Influential ArtisteShatta WaleWon
Ghana Peace AwardsArt for Peace of the YearShatta WaleWon[149]
muzato emmerson Music AwardsPeople Choice of the YearShatta WaleWon[149]
Africa Youth AwardsMusician of the YearShatta WaleNominated[150]
Jigwe AwardsJigwe Musician of the YearShatta WaleNominated[151][152]
2017Ghana Music HonoursBest ProducerShatta WaleWon[153]
Ghana Music HonoursPeople’s Choice AwardShatta WaleWon[154]
Ghana Naija Showbiz AwardsBest Male ActShatta WaleWon[155][156]
Ghana Entertainment Awards USABest SongShatta Wale-KakaiWon[157][158]
EMY Africa AwardsMan of the Year – EntertainmentShatta WaleNominated[159]
Ghana Entertainment Awards USABest EntertainerShatta WaleWon[158][157]
African Pride AwardsArtiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[160][161]
Ghana Events AwardsBest Event Set UpShatta Wale (After the Storm Concert)Won[162][163]
Ghana Music Awards UKAfro Beats Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[164][165]
Ghana Music Awards UKCollaboration of the YearShatta Wale ft Addi sef, Captan & Joint 77Won[164][165]
Ghana Music Awards UKArtiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[164][165]
Ghana Music Awards UKAfro Pop Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[164][165]
Ghana Music Awards UKReggae/Dancehall Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[164][165]
Eastern Music AwardsMost Influential Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon[166]
African Entertainment Awards (US)Best Dancehall ArtisteShatta WaleWon[167]
People’s Celebrity AwardsFavourite Male MusicianShatta WaleWon[168]
Ultimate People’s CelebrityShatta WaleWon[168]
4Syte Music Video AwardsMost Popular VideoShatta Wale- Taking OverWon[169]
Soundcity MVP Awards FestivalBest Male MVPShatta WaleNominated[170]
African Artiste of the YearShatta WaleNominated[170]
Digital Artiste of the YearHimselfNominated[170]
20183 Music AwardsSong of the YearAyooWon[171]
Song Writer of the YearShatta WaleWon[171]
Facebook Star of the YearShatta WaleWon[171]
Male Act of the YearShatta WaleWon[171]
Ghana Music AwardsBest Collaboration of the YearTaking OverWon[171]
Dancehall Artiste of the YearShatta WaleNominated[171]
Dancehall Song of the YearDem ConfuseNominated[171]
Hiplife Song of the YearAyooNominated[171]
Song of the YearTaking OverNominated[171]
African Entertainment Awards (US)Best Dancehall ActShatta WaleWon[172]
Ghana Entertainment Awards (US)Best SongTaking OverWon[171]
Best CollaborationTaking OverWon
Best EntertainerShatta WaleWon
Best Reggae/Dancehall ActShatta WaleNominated
2019Ugandan Music Excellence AwardsBest African Music VideoShatta WaleWon[173]
3 Music AwardsViral Song of the YearShatta Wale-GringoWon[174][175]
Highlife Song of the YearShatta WaleNominated
Reggae Dancehall Song of the YearShatta Wale-GringoWon
Digital Artiste of the YearShatta WaleWon
Fan Army of the YearShatta movement-Shatta WaleWon
Reggae Dancehall Act of the YearShatta WaleWon
Music Video of the YearShatta Wale-GringoWon
Album of the YearShatta Wale-Reign AlbumNominated
Song of the YearShatta Wale-My LevelWon
Male Act of the YearShatta WaleWon
2019Vodafone Ghana Music AwardsArtiste of the YearShatta WalePending[176]
Highlife Song of the YearShatta Wale-My LevelWon
Reggae Dancehall Song of the YearShatta Wale-GringoWon
Afro Pop Song of the YearShatta Wale – Thunder Fire feat SM MilitantsNominated
Reggae Dancehall Artiste of the YearShatta WaleNominated
Best Video of the YearShatta Wale – Gringo (Dir Sesan)Nominated
Vodafone Most Popular Song of the YearShatta Wale-My LevelPending
Album of the YearShatta Wale-Reign AlbumNominated
Best African CollaborationShatta Wale ft OlamideNominated
Artiste of the DecadeShatta WaleNominated
Ghana Music Awards UKReggae Dancehall Artist of the YearHimselfWon[177]
Popular Song of the Year“My Level”Won
2020BreakTudo AwardsCollaboration of the YearAlreadyWon[178]


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  41. ^ or empty |title= (help)
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