How Adekunle Gold Leverages Fashion to Reflect His Artistic Growth

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From Adekunle Gold to AG Baby to Tio Tequila, there hasn’t been a smoother evolution in the Nigerian music industry.

Adekunle Gold’s journey in the Nigerian music industry is a masterclass in reinvention. From his debut as a young artist stepping into the limelight with a fresh sound to his current persona as Tio Tequila, he’s shown a remarkable ability to evolve both musically and stylistically. 

When Adekunle Gold first appeared on the scene in 2015, he was a fresh face with a unique sound. Signed to YBNL, his breakout single “Sade” made waves across radio and streaming platforms. This Folk-Pop ballad, a love song with a mix of highlife and folk sounds, marked him as an alternative artist, unlike many of his peers who leaned heavily into Pop. Adekunle Gold embraced traditional sounds, setting himself apart with tracks like “Orente.” 

His musical influences are deeply rooted in his upbringing. Growing up in the Kosoko royal family, his father’s love for indigenous Yoruba music—Juju, Highlife, Fuji—left a lasting impression. This cultural heritage was not just audible in his music but visible in his style. The cover of his debut album ‘Gold’ featured him decked out in traditional Yoruba attire, adorned in gold from head to toe, an outfit that highlighted his proud connection to his roots.

Fast forward to his second album, ‘About 30,’ and we see a more mature Adekunle Gold. Here, he maintained his traditional style, but with a twist. The cover art featured him on a horse, representing his success and growth. His sound evolved too, mirroring his growth as an artist. This album explored this change, with tracks like “Fame” addressing the double-edged sword of success, asking: how do you become a king without losing yourself? 

As he settled into the success and maturity reflected in ‘About 30,’ the world soon faced an unprecedented challenge that would further influence his journey— the global pandemic. The world went virtual, and AG’s evolution hit overdrive. He became a full-blown pop star, a husband, a father – and a risk-taker with his style and sound. His album ‘Afropop Vol.1,’ released under Universal Music Group subsidiary, Virgin EMI Records, was a bold step into pop stardom. The cover featured a confident AG Baby, with shoulder-length braids adorned with beads, a red silk shirt, and layered accessories, symbolizing his newfound confidence and experimental approach to style. This era saw him embracing bold colors, loose-fitting pants, and tailored suits, further distinguishing his visual identity. 

Of course, change isn’t always smooth and not everyone was feeling the new AG, with critics and fans alike having mixed reactions to his new style. Some fans longed for the traditional sounds of his earlier work, while others celebrated his daring new direction. AG embraced the doubters, continued to push boundaries despite the criticisms with even more experimentation. Ultimately, his willingness to reinvent himself allowed him to reach new audiences and expand his artistic boundaries.

Travel has played a significant role in shaping AG’s perspective and style. His experiences around the world influence his wardrobe, bringing in elements from various cultures. This global outlook was evident in his fashion choices, which often incorporated traditional and contemporary styles from different regions. This eclectic style has become a signature of his brand, enthralling fans all over the world. 

His last project, “Tio Tequila,” was a visual feast, a look into his always-expanding fashion sense. From the colourful durags to the sharp tailoring, AG Baby is really in his 30s bag in the best way, defined by a sleek look with bold colors, great fabrics, and top-notch style. Scrolling through his social media, you see a diverse array of looks, each outfit telling a story of its own. From the intricate details of his outfits to the confident way he carries himself, it’s clear that Adekunle Gold is an artist who embraces change and isn’t afraid to be innovative.

Adekunle Gold’s ability to evolve while staying true to his roots is what makes him one of the most compelling artists in the Afropop scene today. His journey from Adekunle Gold to AG Baby to Tio Tequila shows his incredible versatility and creativity, and he is a shining example of how an artist can stay relevant and exciting. The next time you see AG rocking a head-turning outfit, remember – it’s not just clothes. It’s the story of a man who’s confident in his identity, an artist who refuses to be boxed in, and a true Nigerian style icon.

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