Adedamola Adefolahan, popularly called Fireboy or Fireboy DML, is a fast-rising Nigerian Afro-Life singer. The talented singer, presumably born in 1996, has made a name for himself in the Nigerian music industry.
While you may be able to attach Fireboy DML to his breakout song, Jealous, it is still important that you read his full biography here.
To start, let us look at 10 important facts everyone should know about Fireboy DML.
10 facts about Fireboy DML
- Fireboy DML’s real name is Adedamola Adefolahan and the DML is an acronym for Damola. He is a graduate of English Language from the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.
- Fireboy DML did not take music seriously until his university days when he started performing at shows and began earning some money. And after his university education will beg to perform at shows and even paid money to be allowed to perform.
- Fireboy’s music influences are Passenger, Wande Coal and Jon Bellion.
- All the 13 songs in his debut album, Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps album were recorded within five days.
- He won the City People Music Awards Most Promising Act of the Year (2019) and Soundcity MVP Awards Festival Listeners’ Choice (2020) for Jealous.
- Fireboy DML replaced DMW’s Davido as the face of Apple Music #AfricaNow playlist in January 2020.
- Before venturing into music, he used to write poems, then he graduated into writing songs for other people.
- Fireboy was discovered by Olamide, who signed him into Yahoo Boys No Laptop (YBNL) Nation record label and also took him along with him to Empire, an American music publishing group.
- Fireboy created his own music ‘movement’, which he calls Afro-Life, distinguishing himself from the Afrobeats genre.
- In 2021, Adefolahan won five awards at the 14th Headies including in two album categories for Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps and Apollo.
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Fireboy DML Biography: early life
Fireboy DMLs real name is Adedamola Adefolahan and he was presumably born on 5th February 1996 in Sagamu, Abeokuta, Ogun State. There is a discrepancy over Fireboy’s real age. This is because while The Nigerian info and other local blogs place Fireboy’s year of birth in 1996, his Wikipedia page suggests that he was born either in 1996 or 1997. To the best of our knowledge, Fireboy has not cleared the air as to his real date of birth. He couldn’t have been born twice, could he?
One thing we can confirm about his birth is that he was born in Sagamu, Abeokuta, Ogun State. He was the first child in a family of all-male three children, not much else is known publicly about his family including his parents. However, Fireboy himself had debunked rumours that Bolaji Amusan, known as Mr Latin, is his father.
The rumours had begun after Olamide posted a picture of Mr Latin and asked fans to guess who the actor would look like if he wore a durag. But there was no fact to back this up.
Presumably, Fireboy DML’s father and mother still live in Abeokuta where they gave birth to him. He also grew up in that bubbling capital city of Ogun State and attended both his primary and secondary school education there.
However, when it was time to further his education, Fireboy opted for the prestigious Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) in Ile-Ife, Osun State. While the two states share common borders, the star had to adapt to a new environment at the university. At OAU, Fireboy DML studied English Language and was graduated in 2017 from the institution after earning a Bachelor in Arts (BA).
People close to him before he adopted the stage name, Fireboy, usually called him Damola. This his the short form of his first name. Let us now discuss how he started his music career.
Fireboy DML Biography: Music career
According to Dazed Digital, Fireboy acknowledged that the love of arts grew on him as he was not from a family of artists. Also, while he had always written poems most of his adult life, he noted that he knew he could sing since he was 12 years old.
However, he always considered singing as something he could do but not as a serious talent. Definitely, not something he could even make money from. While he always wrote poems and some song lyrics, it was when he was at the university that he embraced his talent.
At the time, he was already around 16 or 17. He mentioned that the three musicians who influenced his singing greatly were Passenger, Wande Coal and Jon Bellion. Undoubtedly he listened to a lot of Tope Alabi, Yinka Ayefele, Celine Dion and Elton John while growing courtesy of his parents. Yet, his main influences are around the trio already mentioned.
Fireboy started to perform at some shows at his school and was popular among students. This was when he decided that maybe something could come out of making music.
His initial plan on completion of his first degree at OAU was to move back home to Abeokuta. But, he suddenly decided to take the risk to pursue a music career in Lagos.
Having no relatives in Lagos, he stayed with some friends he had made at school. Damola, as his close friends called him, began attending shows indiscriminately. He would beg to sing at some, at others, he would pay or have his friends pay for him.
However, the young artist knew that he was not making much progress. Thus, he had a rethink and decided to use another strategy.
Fortunately, one of his friends had some music equipment in his house. He started making his own songs and writing for other people. Speaking about that period, he says:
“I wrote (songs) for people, some for N30k, others for N50k. Songs that I regret selling, but it is part of the process.”
It was during this period he joined Yahoo Boy No Laptop (YBNL) Nation, founded by Olamide.
Fireboy DML joins YBNL
In October 2018, Olamide Adedeji signed Adedamola Adefolahan (Fireboy DML) to his record label, YBNL Nation. The music boss had signed Picazo Rap and Yomi Blaze hours before announcing the signing on Instagram.
At the time he was signed, Fireboy was relatively unknown and sort of a dark horse to many. The artiste himself understood this and recognised that he was bringing a new sound that would take some getting used to. He was, therefore, prepared to be patient.
He dropped his first track, Jealous, in 2018 about two months after his signing.
Jealous by Fireboy DML
Fireboy’s breakout song, Jealous, was also his first official single under YBNL. Many may not know this but Jealous, produced by Cracker Mallo, was first released in December 2018 as part of the YBNL Mafia Family album. The album had 13 tracks and Fireboy’s Jealous was the number five track on the album.
Despite not being popular and having to compete with contributions from Olamide, DJ Enimoney, Lk Kuddy, Kizz Daniel and Kranium, the track managed to stand out.
While Fireboy also appeared on four more songs on the album, I’ll Be Fine, Fire Down, Le Le Yi and Finally, it was clear that there was something unique about Jealous.
It may have been the innocence of the lyrics or the fact that some said it sounded like something Wizkid would sing. The point was that the song was clearly catchy. Before long, people started to sing it on the streets and in their homes.
This prompted the re-release of the song as a single on 25th March 2019. By then, people were using the song on their WhatsApp status and Instagram stories.
Jealous gained massive airplay and is the song that has taken Fireboy DML to many award shows as a nominee.
Hopefully, there will be more songs that will push his career further, but Jealous remains iconic, so far, for Fireboy.
It was the same song that took him to The Headies as a nominee for Song of the Year in 2019. Jealous was also nominated in several categories at the 2019 City People Music Awards and won one award, the City People Music Awards Most Promising Act of the Year (2019).
Soundcity MVP Awards Festival also recognised the song in 2020 with another award, the Soundcity MVP Awards Festival Listeners’ Choice (2020).
After some more releases, which included What If I Say and King, Fireboy dropped his maiden album titled Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps on 29th November 2019.
Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps
Still, under his first music contract with YBNL, the then rising music sensation dropped What If I Say which Pheelz masterfully produced. In August, he released King that was produced by Echo the Guru.
After keeping fans waiting, Fireboy finally treated them to his first album titled Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps.
While music enthusiasts had their own opinion of which box best fits the album, Adedamola Adefolahan, known as Fireboy, said the genre was Afro-Life.
The title of the album has puzzled some people and we will shed more light on that in the Fireboy DML: Music style section of the article below. However, talking about the album, Fireboy delivered a masterclass.
Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps is abbreviated as LTG and contains 13 awesome tracks. The themes it touched includes love and social issues. One amazing fact about this album is that despite not featuring any guest artiste, it got over 6 million streams on Spotify within three days of its release.
Download: Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps.
Also, another interesting fact is that it took just five days to be completed. Fire Boy made this revelation in an interview with Dazed Digital.
His words: “It took me five days to record the album, apart from some songs I had pre-recorded during the YBNL compilation album period. Myself, Pheelz, and Cracker Mallo just locked ourselves up in a big hotel apartment and worked back-to-back, day-and-night; I was shuttling between Pheelz and Cracker song-after-song, verse-after-verse. It was very hectic, a humbling experience – but it was worth it.”
The name of the album was just to point out the various degree of reactions people have to music.
He explains: “It’s not a random name I just chose. I want people to feel because I feel like my music is something you listen to and feel the exact emotions. There are times when you’d listen and smile or laugh; there are times when you want to cry, emotions driving you to tears; some instruments like the violins at the end of ‘Need You’ might give you goosebumps. You will feel one of those emotions, or all of them at once if you listen.”
In September 2020, “Scatter”, a single off the album was featured on the FIFA 2021 soundtrack which was set for release worldwide on 9 October 2020 on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
Also, Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps won the Best R&B Album award at the 14th Headies in February 2021. While “Tattoo”, also off the album, claimed the Best R&B Single award as well at the same event.
In August 2020, Fireboy released his second studio album titled Apollo under YBNL. The album contained singles such as “ELI,” “Tattoo,” and “New York City Girl.” He featured D Smoke, Wande Coal, and Olamide on some of the 17 tracks.
Speaking about the album, Adefolahan said: “This album is about evolution, growth, love, and pain. Gratitude to God for blessings. Gratitude to everyone who worked with me on this album; gratitude to my team (YBNL/EMPIRE), my family, and the kings who blessed this project with their presence.”
Apollo won the Best Pop Album and Album of the Year awards at the 14 Headies in February 2021.
As previously mentioned, while everyone is entitled to their opinions, Fireboy has emphasised that his album is to be seen as Afro-Life. This raised some dust as music critics were of the opinion that Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps (LTG) is an R&B album.
To explain, the artiste stated that he is “obsessed with standing out” and that Afro-Life is not a genre but a movement. Read it in his own words below:
“I wouldn’t say it’s a genre, but it’s a movement, a state of mind. I feel like my music is different and it doesn’t deserve to be called just R&B, Afrobeats, or Afropop. My music focuses a lot on lyricism, and Afro music has not been popular for focusing on lyricism the way my music does.”
He also mentioned that he was intentional about his dressing style and fashion. He wants people to be able to identify him with a particular type of dressing.
What does Fireboy DML mean?
We didn’t find any explanation for Fireboy online but it is clear that it is reasonable to surmise that it is a combination of ‘fire’ and ‘boy’. This is not strange as many musicians who start young add either ‘boy’, ‘lil’ or ‘kid’ to a word to coin their stage name. But for DML, the singer himself explained that it is an acronym for his first name, Damola. Firenoy explained this in a tweet he shared in June 2016. Read the tweet below:
the DML is an acronym of my name, ‘Damola.
you’re welcome. pic.twitter.com/2hJhjVKwsE
— Fireboy DML (@fireboydml) June 26, 2019
Fireboy DML: Personal life and relationship
Adedamola Adefolahan, popularly called Fireboy DML, lives a serene life that so far appears to be free of unnecessary public drama usually found among entertainment artists. He has not been caught up in any scandal since his ascent to fame.
Also, while he majorly sings about love, he has not been involved with any girl as far as the public can tell. But, this does not mean that Fireboy DML is single. It is possible Fireboy DML has a secret girlfriend and he is just unwilling to show her off.
Whatever the case may be, we respect his decision to keep his relationship off the books.
Fireboy DML Biography: Net worth
While Fireboy DML is doing quite well, there is no verified information on how much he is currently worth. This is unsurprising as he is still a rising star. However, you may find some estimates about Fireboy’s net worth, touted by some blogs. These are merely guesses and have no facts to back them up.
Obviously, the artist earns income from his record label, royalties as well as from shows and other event appearances but the value of these are not publicly available.
In January 2020, Fireboy replaced Davido as the face of Apple Music #AfricaNow playlist. It is not specified if this meant that Apple paid the young superstar or not. Yet, this is a big achievement and it is one he should be proud of.
Also, according to the social media statistics website, Social Blade, Fireboy likely makes about $1.3K – $20.5K monthly or $15.4K – $245.9K annually from his YouTube account. It’s likely his earning fall somewhere in the middle. Earnings both north or south od the projections are not unknown though.
These estimates are not in any way an indication of Fireboy DML’s net worth but are presented to support our conclusion that the young singer’s music is also doing well financially.
Final thoughts …
Adedamola Adefolahan whose stage name is Fireboy DML seems to be a gifted artist. Each of his music projects has garnered listeners and thrilled fans. He has found a formula for making good songs and has also branded his own unique style Afro-Life.
Olamide, who is YBNL Nation’s boss also took Fireboy with him when he joined Empire Music in February 2019. This is a major move for the young man.
He will likely attain greater heights not just in Nigeria but internationally beyond these shores. We all anticipate his next releases and wish him the best in the music industry.
Bonus Fireboy DML Information
1. Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps
1. Need You
6. Like I Do
7. Gbas Gbos
9. Omo Ologo
10. High on Life
12. What If I Say
13. Wait and See
- Champion by (with D Smoke)
- Spell (Ft. Wande Coal)
- Favourite Song
- New York City Girl
- Airplane Mode
- 24 (Interlude)
- Dreamer Lyrics
- Afar (Ft. Olamide)
- Go Away
- Friday Feeling
- God Only Knows
- Remember Me
Fireboy DML Singles
1. What If I Say
4. Don’t Say No
6. Give Me Love
7. You’ll Be Fine
Fireboy DML: Awards
1. City People Music Awards Most Promising Act of the Year (2019).
2. Soundcity MVP Awards Festival Listeners’ Choice (2020) for Jealous.
3. Headies Album of the Year (2021) for Apollo
4. Headies Revelation (2021)
5. Headies Best R&B Single (2021) for Tattoo
6. Headies Best Pop Album (2021) for Apollo
7. Headies Best R&B Album (2021) for Laughter, Tears and Goosebumps.