Chart Beat

Multiple Nigerian Musicians, Led by Adekunle Gold, Hit Social 50 Chart During #EndSARS

Adekunle Gold
Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for SXSW

Adekunle Gold performs during Afropop Worldwide as part of the 2019 SXSW Conference and Festivals at Palm Door on March 15, 2019 in Austin, Texas.

The #EndSARS protest counters police brutality from the Nigerian police’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad unit.

Multiple Nigerian artists reach Billboard’s Social 50 chart dated Oct. 24, led by highlife singer Adekunle Gold, who bows at No. 8.

The Social 50 is powered by data tracked by music analytics company Next Big Sound and ranks the most popular artists on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Wikipedia. The chart's methodology blends weekly additions of friends/fans/followers with artist page views and engagement. Its latest tracking period ended Oct. 15.

Gold is one of many Nigerian artists voicing their support for the country’s #EndSARS movement. The protest decries Nigeria’s state-run Special Anti-Robbery Squad, a unit of the country’s police force, speaking out against alleged police brutality stemming from the organization.

Many of Gold’s tweets in the Oct. 9-15 tracking week referenced #EndSARS, with the singer one of the Nigerian music industry’s most vocal supporters of the movement. “Their plans are failing,” he tweeted Oct. 15 in his most-engaged-with post of the week, one that’s earned over 50,000 retweets and over 50,000 favorites. “NO ONE CAN INTIMIDATE THIS PHONE PRESSING GENERATION!”

In all, Gold, whose appearance on the Social 50 at No. 8 is also his chart debut, saw 861,000 reactions on his Twitter, was mentioned 80,000 times and earned 57,000 new followers, according to Next Big Sound.

Joining Gold on the Social 50 from Nigeria: Falz (No. 11; 613,000 Twitter reactions, 265,000 mentions), Burna Boy (No. 14; 596,000 reactions, 225,000 mentions); Don Jazzy (No. 17; 521,000 reactions, 64,000 mentions), WizKid (No. 15; 503,000 reactions, 425,000 mentions), Banky W. (No. 28; 342,000 reactions, 55,000 mentions), Cuppy (No. 34; 200,000 reaction, 97,000 mentions), Simi (No. 39; 270,000 reactions, 20,000 mentions) and Davido (No. 50, 127,000 new followers).

You Should Know: Burna Boy | Billboard

During the Social 50’s latest tracking week, on Oct. 11, the Nigerian government announced it would be dissolving SARS; however, protests have continued, with protesters pointing out that many of the unit’s officers would still be reassigned and part of the police force, while others don’t believe that the dissolution will actually occur.