Jude Abaga, better known by stage name M.I, meaning Mr. Incredible, is a Nigeria Hip hop Artist, born on October 4, 1981. He has been the Chief Executive Officer of Chocolate City since 2015. M.I has won several awards including the MTV Africa Music Awards 2009 and was nominated for BET 2010 Awards for the Best International Act Category.

A proficient producer, lyricist, songwriter, and instrumentalist, M.I has been described by DIV as the future of African hiphop.

He has produced and featured on works of artists like Don Jazzy, Kel, Djinee, Shifi (Styl Plus), Jesse Jags, Ice Prince, Lindsey, Ruby, Leony, etc. he also runs a production company, Rytchus Era Productions with his brother Jesse Abaga (Jesse Jags).

He rose to prominence in 2006, when his song “Crowd Mentality” became popular in his hometown Jos. He is signed to Chocolate City Music Label. On the 11th of December 2008, M.I released his critically acclaimed debut album, “Talk about it”.

In 1980 Jude was born in Jos, Plateau State to Pastor and Mrs. Abaga from Takum, Taraba State, both of Nigeria descent. His siblings are Jesse Jagz who is also in the Nigerian and African music scene and Jason Abaga.

He attended Baptist High School, Jos where his mother purchased basic music notations and later, a 7-key mini piano which launched him into the music world.

Also See: MI Blasts Femi Fani Kayode, Calls Him a Joker! 

Jude’s venture in the hip hop world started with the sampling of musical works from DMX and Lauryn Hill as early as 1998.

After his stint at Calvin College, Michigan, USA, he delved into poetry while pursuing a career in Business and Economics. There, he performed regularly at the school’s major hip hop shows and concerts. His impressive rap flows and attitude gained him a third place finish at the Calvin College Show tagged ‘HipHopera’ in 2003, which was actually the only “hip hop show” that Calvin College ever had. M.I also made some amateur attempts at comedy, but decided to stick to music because he was embarrassed when nobody laughed but him.

He began his music career when he returned to Nigeria in 2003. Finding his place in an industry dominated by the likes of Modenine, Ruggedman, and Eedris Abdulkareem, he quickly commenced the production of mixtapes with his friend Djinee. This led to the critically acclaimed song “Safe”, which has gathered impressive airplay by African radio and music video stations such as MTV Vibe. The track also earned him awards at Nigerian Music Video Awards, City People, N.E.A amongst others.

He later released his first studio album titled Let’s Talk about It. The album received awards such as Musician of the Year (Modemen Awards in 2008), Best Hip Hop Artist (City People Awards).

His first mixtape was PYERIBOY. He later went on to bring out sample mixtape, ILLEGAL Music, in which he fully exploits his lyrical prowess.

Back in Jos Nigeria, he teamed up with his brother, Jesse Jags, Ice Prince, Ruby, Threadstone, Lindsey, Moses (Elbulk), E Kelly to form a record label, called LOOPY records, and they perform every Sunday at an open bar, with a theme tagged Jam Session. He was later signed to Chocolate City Company which made him move from Jos to Abuja.

He also received international recognition in South Africa from the popular Channel 0 Music Award, MTV Base Awards and also the American BET Awards.

Music Achievements

His first album sold 30,000 copies in the first 30 minutes of release (TJoe distributions December 2008)

Hit singles include: Safe, Crowd mentality, Teaser, Short black boy, Anoti, Fast Money Fast Cars, Number 1, Undisputed Champion, and Action Film.

His second album, MI2: The Movie, is the highest selling album on the most popular Nigerian musical website

In the week of the second album release, November 2010, MI was number 7 trending topic globally on Twitter.

M.I's role in the music industry cannot be overstated. He has been responsible for bringing out many upcoming artistes such as Wizkid, Vypa, Jesse Jagz, Ruby, Pype, Ice Prince and the latest is Brymo.

He has been described by many Nigerian hip hop fans as Nigeria's 'Hip Hop Messiah'. MI has done a lot to bring a Northern presence to the Nigerian music industry; he depicts the perfect example of bringing Nigeria together. His music is conscious; therefore he is a leader in many ways to the youth of Nigeria. He is the founder of Loopy Records, and he is signed to Chocolate City. M.I produces with Chocolate City, and has produced albums and songs for his label mates. The most notable of these being in 2011 when he produced Ice Prince's album Everybody Loves Ice Prince.


There has been a little rivalry between Nigerian artists, M.I. Abaga and Kelly Handsome. This started when M.I. in his track Fast Money, Fast Cars stated, "Kelly Handsome is handsome, I’ll tell him when I see him. But if i want a man, it’d be Keke or D1". Kelly Handsome did not take kindly to these words and From there they both have gone track for track with Kelly Handsome releasing Catch Me If You Can, where he goes in on the whole Chocolate City label. In response, the Choc City camp released Nobody Test Me with a line from M.I talking directly to Kelly Handsome, or any other Kelly he had beef with at the time. Later, Kelly Handsome released Chocolate Boys (Chocolate City members). M.I. released a track on his 2010 album, M.I.2 named Beef. With Kelly hearing this, brought out the track Finish You Boy.

In 2009 a US-based rapper by the name Iceberg Slim released a single titled Mr. International where he said the lines: "Am I better than M.I? I don't know. Am I? Matter of fact you should ask M.I". That apparently didn’t sit too well with M.I, prompting him to release a single known as Somebody Wants To Die featuring his label mate Ice Prince on the track. Less than 48 hours after the release of M.I’s Somebody Wants To Die IceBerg Slim released Assassination and sources quote that his Facebook status at the time of the release read "‘Somebody Wants To Die’, I’ll be responsible for the ‘Assassination’ … let the countdown begin … (I told em it would be a M.I.stake, but they didn’t listen)". There has been a contest in the mind of rap fans on who happens to be the best rapper in Nigeria presently, M.I has developed more fans than Iceberg Slim and has more hit records while Iceberg Slim has gained hearts on Nigerian rap fans in a very short and unusual period. None of these rappers have come out openly to declare or settle this beef talk, but Nigerian rap fans have their hands folded on what’s going to be next.

Awards and Nominations


  • Best Rap Album 2009 –HipHop world Awards
  • Hip Hop Revelation 2009 - HipHop World Awards
  • Best New Act of the Year 2009 – Nigerian Entertainment Awards
  • Best Rap Single 2008 - HipHop World Awards
  • Musician of the Year– Modemen Awards 2008
  • Best Hip Hop- MTV Africa Music Awards 2009
  • Best New Act- MTV Africa Music Awards 2009
  • Best Use of Special Effects in a video-NMVA 2009
  • Best Mainstream Hiphop Video-NMVA 2009
  • Musician of the Year-The Future Awards 2010
  • Musician of the Year – City People 2010
  • Artist of the Year – National Daily 2010
  • Musician of the Year – Malaysian African Entertainments Awards 2010
  • Most Amiable Brand – Orange Wall of Fame 2010


  • Best Rap Album-Hip Hop World Awards 2009
  • Lyricist On The Roll-Hip Hop World Awards 2009
  • HipHop Revelation-Hip Hop World Awards 2009
  • Musician of the Year-Modemen Awards 2008
  • Lyricist On The Roll-Hip Hop World Awards 2008
  • Best Rap Single-Hip Hop World Awards 2008
  • Next Rated- Hip Hop World Awards 2008
  • Best Mainstream HipHop Video- Nigerian Music Video Awards 2009
  • Best Director(Mex)- Nigerian Music Video Awards 2009
  • Video of The Year-Nigerian Music Video Awards 2009
  • Best Use of Special Effects in a video-Nigerian Music Video Awards 2009
  • Musician of the Year-The Future Awards 2009
  • Face Of Hope Ambassador- Face of Hope Nigeria Project
  • Best Rap Single-Hip Hop World Awards 2010
  • Lyricist on the Roll-Hip Hop World Awards 2010
  • Best International Act- BET Awards 2010
  • Artist of the Year- Diaspora Professionals, Dubai 2011

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Category: Top Nigerian Musician

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