From global music domination to life-changing missions, Akon’s success is deep-seated and elusive. The singer, songwriter, producer, and businessman was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and spent a chunk of his childhood in Senegal. His musical talent cuts across genres—pop, hip hop, R&B, and dance—generating over 300 guest appearances and 33 million albums sold.
Akon took the world by storm when he released his first album, Trouble, in 2004. His style isn’t the only thing that’s propelled his international fame. Through his record labels, Kon Live and Konvict, he gave rise to two artists that would break new sounds into the music world—Lady Gaga and T-Pain.
Though widely respected as an entertainer, Akon is revered for his social contributions. His commitment to the welfare of African citizens is unwavering. In 2014, he launched “Akon Lighting Africa”, a partnership to bring electricity to one million households in Africa by the end of the year. To date, he has provided thousands of jobs and solar-powered electricity to 17 countries.
Notable Recognitions and Collaborations
- Recognized on Forbes Magazine’s Celebrity 100 list in 2010
- 5th Most Powerful Celebrity in Africa
- Five Grammy Award nominations, including Best Contemporary R&B Album for Konvicted and Best R&B Vocal Performance by a Duo or Groupfor Bartender with T-Pain
95 total award nominations around the globe, including for the American Music Awards, World Music Awards, and South Africa’s Channel O Music Awards