12 Interesting Facts About Angelique Kidjo

Here are some interesting facts about Angelique Kidjo, a four-time Grammy Award winner, and one of the greatest artists in the world, from her background, albums, and faith, to her love for humanity.


1. We bet you didn’t know she has 6 other names. Her full Name is Angélique Kpasseloko Hinto Hounsinou Kandjo Manta Zogbin Kidjo

2. She was born on July 14, 1960, in Ouidah, Benin


3. Angelique grew up dancing, singing, and listening to traditional Beninese music, Nigerian pop, Afropop, Caribbean zouk, Congolese rumba, jazz, gospel, Latin, and her brothers’ James Brown-inspired rock band.

4. In 1985, she became the front singer of Jasper van ‘t Hof’s Euro-African jazz/rock band Pili Pili


5. Her first solo album, “Parakou” was recorded in 1989

6. “Logozo” her first album for Island Records was released in 1991. The album reached number one on the Billboard World Music chart.

Angélique Kidjo performs a tribute to the celebrated salsa star Celia Cruz ( Credit: Mark Allan )

7. Kidjo is a polyglot. She speaks and sings in eight languages: Fon, French, Yorùbá, Gen (Mina), English, Spanish, Portuguese, Swahili

8. Although Kidjo was raised a Catholic, she practices traditional voodoo as a religion.

Angelique Kidjo won the Best World Music Album at the 62nd Grammy Awards (2020)

9. Kidjo has won 4 Grammy Awards on four of her albums: Djin Djin(2007), EVE(2014), Sings(2015), and Celia (2019)

10. On June 6, 2013, Kidjo was elected vice-president of the Confédération Internationale des Sociétés d´Auteurs et Compositeurs (CISAC)


11. She is an activist. She founded the Batonga Foundation to help support education for hardest-to-reach young women and girls in Benin.

12. Kidjo’s hit songs include “Agolo”, “We We”, “Adouma”, “Wombo Lombo”, “Afirika”, “Batonga“, and her version of “Malaika“.

Watch Angelique Kidjo perform “Afirika” at the 2020 Grammy Awards:



I’d leave you with this quote from the legend:

“You can fall, but you can rise also.” – Angelique Kidjo

What other African icons would you like to know about? Leave a response in the comment section!

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