Full Biography of John Ikponwosa Ighodaro (Johnny Drille)

John Ikponwosa Ighodaro, commonly called Johnny Drille is a talented Nigerian Music artiste, Music producer and Writer. Johnny Drille was born on the 5th of July 1990 into the Christian family of Pastor and Mrs. John Ighodaro. He is among other four other children from his parents.

John Ighodaro is a native of Benin, Edo State and he spent major part of his life in Benin City with his clergy parents and family. Growing up, Johnny Drille gained his fundamental education in Benin City, Edo State. After which he proceeded to the University. After staying at home for over a year without gaining admission into the University. He later got a B. A in English and Literally Studies from the Prestigious University of Benin, Edo State.

According to Johnny Drille, his parents were extremely strict with him and his siblings. His siblings were the only friends he had while growing up. That was when Johnny Drille came to realise that he loved music and since started music when he was a child. He soon became a part of the church music band at that time. Johnny Drille and his siblings were confined only to Christian songs, this was majorly due to the religious belief their father had against circular songs. Even when in the University of Benin, Edo State, he has always been doing music alongside his academic work, he has always had a burning passion for music.


Some persons who are not familiar with his songs would take him as a foreign singer. This is because, while growing up, he always listened to foreign songs of music artists like Don Moen. This helped shaped pattern of songs. His journey into fame as a music artiste started when when he collaborated with a popular Nigerian music artist known as Di Ja under the Mavin Records a song called"Aww" which became very popular. This slim opportunity exposed him to top  stars in the Nigerian music industry. This gave him the opportunity to join the popular Mavin Records, and ever since then, he hasn't ceased to wow everyone with his songs, especially his fans . And of course, joining Marvin Records made him even more popular. According to him, he doesn't think of leaving the Marvin Records anytime soon. As he believes they helped him to make his dream come through.


With honourary mention to the many awards and nominations received by Johnny Drille in recent times, one notable win is his recent Best Vocal Performance (Male) Award in 2019 with his song, Finding Efe. Johnny Drille is well known for singing love and romance songs. In recent times, he has connected with top Nigerian music stars like Simi and Niniola to mention but few.

Johnny Drille is best known for his single ‘Wait For Me’ which was nominated for Best Alternative Song at the 2016 Headies Awards. The Nigerian singer first sang in the church of his clergyman father before he came to the attention of the Mavin record label. Johnny’s folky/acoustic sound is firmly rooted in his Nigerian heritage but he’s looking outside of his native borders for additional inspiration, which should bring the singer widespread international recognition.


In an interview, Johnny Drille revealed that his earliest musical memory is listening to Christmas albums by Boney M in the early 90s. Their tapes were the only ones the family had back then and even when it wasn’t the Christmas season I’d play them over and over with my sister and brothers.

He further revealed that the first band that really caught his attention came after listening on tape to Boney M. Without really knowing who they were he fell in love with The Backstreet Boys.  He also has a special thing Jon Bellion. I saw him perform in Nashville for the first time and I have always been blown away by his music.

4. Do you sit down to write songs or do you wait until your mojo comes to get you?

I can go both ways depending on how important it is to write at the moment but I’ve realized when I’m in certain moods, places, or situations writing comes together pretty quickly.

5. Big venue or small venue - what's your favourite to play?

I’d love to play really big venues in no distant time. I’ve been blessed to play to crowd of 3000 at my first live show in Lagos, Nigeria and that was awesome. I don’t mind playing small venues too, something very intimate about them.

6. Who is the one artist you wish you could share a stage with (past or present)?

Jon Bellion. I’m such a huge fan of the guy. It would be so cool to share a stage with him.

7. Bowie, Prince, Sinatra, Elvis which departed great means the most to you?

They’re all great icons but Elvis probably meant a little more to me. His music is endearing and connects with me on a different level.

9. Should music be free?

I think that music is a gift from God to be enjoyed my all. I also think that there’s so much that goes into creating some of our favorite records that we never know about. A lot of musicians might not care about the money but truth is they need it to keep putting out the records we love. Recording and promoting costs a lot of money. Even though some artistes don’t really think of it that way they actually kind of provide services like you getting served at a restaurant and it’s just right to pay for that service. Music is everywhere to listen for free, from radio stations, to TV, to street music, etc. but if you love what you hear you should support it.

10. Can you remember the first record you bought and what have you bought recently?

The first record I bought was MI Abaga’s ‘Talk About It’.

Johnny Drille has so far been honored with many awards and nominations at different occasions. The recent being the best vocal performance (male) in 2019 with his song "Finding Efe".

The young music artist is currently unmarried with no child/children. Some reports says he's in a serious relationship.

Johnny Drille is a popular music artiste, engaged across various social media platforms with hundreds of followers. His estimated net-worth is about $500,000, a sum which largely sourced from his musical albums, concerts, sponsorships, ambassadorships and other and endorsement deal. A list of popular songs by Johnny Drille are mentioned below:

  1. Hallelujah Featuring Simi
  2. My Beautiful love
  3. Before we fall
  4. Wait for Me - 8th March, 2017
  5. Romeo and Juliet etc