Nigerian artist and producer Odunsi the Engine (born Bowofoluwa Olufisayo Odunsi) emerged in 2016 with an eclectic sound that draws from a wide array of influences like Afro-pop, R&B, funk, disco, and '80s-leaning indie synth pop. His full-length debut, 2018's Rare, was a breakout hit and helped to establish Odunsi as a leading light in the genre-bending Nigerian Alté movement.
Looking to artists like Ralph Tresvant, Asa, Kris Okotie, Prince, King Sunny Ade, and Sade for inspiration, Odunsi began crafting beats at the age of 16. Three years later, in 2016, he released his stylistically diverse debut EP, Time of Our Lives, followed by War, a collaborative R&B EP with fellow Nigerian producer and singer Nonso Amadi. The singles "Star Sign" and "Alte Cruise" made waves ahead of the release of Odunsi's first full-length effort, the acclaimed Rare, which featured guest spots from a slew of Alté mainstays like Nasty C, Santi, Tay Iwar, Davido, and Runtown. Odunsi landed his biggest hit yet the following year with the sultry single "Tipsy," a duet with British singer Raye. Early 2020 saw Odunsi drop the surprise EP Everything You Heard Is True, which featured Amaarae, Gigi Atlantis, Deto Black, and Maison2500. ~ James Christopher Monger