Nadia Nakai is finally being recognized as an international megastar, officially that is. This recognition is long overdue in my books.
The Zimbabwean-born and South African rapper has put in the foundational work to stardom or rather to be respected as an MC, especially in the male-dominated industry of South Africa.
Nadia’s Accomplishments Over The Years
Nadia Nakai moved to Johannesburg during her childhood and then bagged a degree in marketing communications at Monash university. So of course the go-getter started off in the television industry by presenting on a show- Daily Planet.
Then she kicked off her music industry by winning a mixtape competition on Shiz Niz and became the first female in South Africa to win on the show. Nadia continued on her music career path by releasing “Like Me” in 2013. The hunger in the song and visualiser was proof enough that she’ll grow into a superstar.
Fast forward to 2014, she hopped on an All-Star Remix of ‘Amantombazane’ with Hip-Hop greats such as the late Riky Rick, Kwesta, Maggz, etc. She was the only female rapper on the remix, and this unintentionally mimicked Nicki Minaj on YG’s ‘My Nigga’ remix.
To this day, the ‘Amantombazane’ is spoken about in SA Hip Hop spaces.
2015 came, and Nadia Nakai released her single ‘Saka wena’ ft Ice Prince. Then a second single followed ‘Whatever’ ft Psyfo and DotCom.
A year later, in 2016 Nadia signed to Family Tree, a music label owned by one of SA Hip Hop’s heavyweights Cassper Nyovest. This big move pushed her to an immediate release of the brazy song ‘Money Back.’ With positive feedback from the song, Nadia Nakai released her first EP “Bragga.” The EP had features from Tshego, Yung Swiss, Gemini Maejor and her label boss then, Cassper.
Braga debuted top 2 on the iTunes hip hop chart. It became clear she was here to stay. The Bragga name became a part of her identity, kind of her alter-ego. She officially debuted her “Bragga” persona with her 2017 hit song ‘Naa Meaan featuring Cassper. The song rode the charts, clubs, and Africa for years. The song could play in today’s club scene and everyone will recite her lyrics.
The year 2019, Nadia Nakai released her debut album “Nadia Naked.” This album has opened so many doors for the rapper. She began her mogul journey with the success of the album. It graced her collaborations with TFG for her own NadiaNakaixRedbat collection. The collection sold out in less than a month all over South Africa.
The same year, she became the ambassador of Reebok. Nadia then gave her fans “Bossing Up” docuseries which showcased her behind-the-scenes life. Aside from this, she has garnered several awards over the years. But this one feels important. It’s an open door to an international market, and knowing Nadia Nakai-her work ethic will take her far.