John Ighodaro, born on July 5, 1990, in Edo State, Nigeria, is a renowned Nigerian alternative singer, songwriter, producer, and sound engineer known by his stage name, Johnny Drille. His musical journey started early, singing in his father’s church at a tender age. With a passion for music production, he began honing his skills in 2006 and officially entered the music scene in 2012 under Mavin Records.
Early Life and Education:
Hailing from Edo State, Nigeria, Johnny Drille grew up in a family with four siblings. His father, a school principal and minister, instilled a strong sense of faith and music in him. Beginning with church performances alongside his siblings, he joined the children’s choir at the age of 11, even playing the keyboard. Johnny’s fascination with music production started in 2006, as he embarked on a journey of self-learning using a simple cassette recorder. He pursued his education at prestigious schools in Benin and graduated from the University of Benin with a degree in English and literature.
Johnny Drille’s professional music career took off after his participation in MTN Project Fame’s sixth season in 2013. Although he finished in tenth place, this setback did not hinder his determination. He gained popularity by recording a cover of Di’ja’s “Awww,” which caught the attention of Don Jazzy, the founder of Mavin Records. This exposure led to the release and success of his single “Love Do Not Lie.” His breakthrough came with “Wait for Me” in 2015, which became a viral hit. Initially experimenting with various genres, he found his distinctive style inspired by the American folk band Mumford & Sons.
Signing with Mavin Records in 2017 marked a pivotal moment in his career, further solidifying his position in the Nigerian music scene. Johnny Drille also shared his insights and experiences as a guest celebrity on Project Fame, motivating new talents to shine on stage.
Among his notable tracks are “Love Don’t Lie,” “Wait For Me,” “Romeo and Juliet,” “Halleluya,” and “Papa.” His music resonates with listeners due to its meaningful lyrics and soothing melodies.
Johnny Drille’s introspective and soul-stirring music is a reflection of his introverted nature. This characteristic was evident when he organized his first concert, “Johnny’s Room Live,” which embraced intimacy over large crowds. He keeps his love life private, but his song “Finding Efe” hints that he is still single and searching for the right person. In his spare time, he enjoys creating and sharing song covers with his fans.
Johnny Drille’s journey from singing in his father’s church to becoming a celebrated Nigerian alternative artist showcases his unwavering dedication to his craft. With an introverted disposition and a passion for creating heartwarming music, he has carved a special place in the hearts of music enthusiasts worldwide. You can follow Johnny Drille’s musical journey on his Instagram account (@johnnydrille).