Birth Name: Agyei Nelson Yaw
Born: May 5, 1985
Genre: Hiplife, Hip hop
Agyei Nelson Yaw (born 5 May 1985), better known by his stage name AJ Nelson is a Ghanaian recording artist. He is most famous for the singles “Same Girl”, “Faith” and “Power to the People” and is currently the only rapper who fuses the Bono language with Ashanti Twi in his songs. In 2015, AJ Nelson initiated a campaign titled “Power To the People” to empower the youth of his homeland, Ghana and of the African continent to speak against woes of society since he felt there was much corruption and conflicts on the African continent but the people mostly affected could hardly voice their thoughts and emotions to the leaders of society. The campaign attracted the attention of important figures like Communication Director at World Bank, Mr. Kofi Tsikata k and Bella Mundi of GH One TV who joined the campaign. In the same period, AJ Nelson released a hiphop song titled “Power to the People”. In November 2015, the song was ranked the 3rd most downloaded Ghanaian Hiphop Song on iTunes. AJ Nelson was ranked the 3rd top selling artist on iTunes in November 2015.
Agyei Nelson Yaw was born in Dormaa Ahenkro, Brong Ahafo Region of Ghana. He is the 5th of 7 children born to Mrs. Agnes Isha Yeboa Mensah, and Mr. Mohammed Amoani Mensah. He attended the Saint Dominic School and in school gained interest in rap music. He started writing his own songs and at the age of 18 started performing in High Schools and local shows. AJ Nelson later attended IPMC College of technology in Accra, where he studied diploma in Web & Graphic design.
Nelson first began to gain recognition at the start of 2009 when he featured on a welcome song for the 44th president of the United States of America, Barack Obama’s visit to Ghana. The song featured prominently on worldwide Television including the CNN. After releasing underground singles in 2009 and 2010, AJ Nelson got a major record deal with his former record label, GH Brothers and proceeded to release his debut mainstream hit single, “Same Girl” featuring Quabena Maphia in September 2010. He subsequently released a second single titled “Dream” in 2011 but that didn’t have a lot of commercial success compared to its forerunner. In the last quarter of 2011, he released a third single, titled “Faith” featuring Ghanaian-American music producer, singer, and songwriter based in New York City, Jay Ghartey and that was a major commercial success including its music video’s air play on several Television channels outside Africa like MTV Base. In 2015 AJ Nelson released “Power to the People” under the label, Corna Rock Entertainment. Power to the people led Aj to be ranked 3rd on iTunes list of top selling Ghanaian Hiphop artists alongside fellow rappers Sarkodie and Obrafuor. In the week of November 23–29, 2015, “Power to the people” was the only Ghanaian song listed in the list of Best New Music of The Week on Wepluggoodmusic.com. AJ Nelson was nominated as 2016 Ghana Carnival ambassadors.
Nelson raps in English with a fusion of Asanti twi and Bono (the local language by natives of Brong Ahafo). It is for this reason he is nicknamed the BA Emcee (Brong Ahafo Emcee) because he represents the people of Brong Ahafo on the Ghanaian rap scene.