Candy Bleakz is an Afrobeats rapper from Nigeria whose widespread appeal has earned her the title “Queen of the Streets”.
She is also known as the “Ladies Dragon” because she has been said to spit fire…
She definitely has a style of her own with her colourful dreads and androgynous fashion sense.
Born Blessing Mariam Akiode, she had a tough childhood in Lagos.
“Growing up wasn’t really beautiful you know. I didn’t grow up with much love because my parents were divorced since I was three years old.”
She had to spend time between her father’s place, her grandmother’s and with her mother, who had remarried.
“While struggling and living around, I managed to get some sort of street orientation.”
But she says it is a life she does not want for herself or her children.
She puts her tomboy dress sense down to the fact that she did not have anybody to buy her clothes and so she used to share her older brother’s wardrobe.
Candy Bleakz went to university but when her parents could not continue paying her fees she did a freestyle on Facebook and was contacted by music video director Jimmy Strings.
He offered to shoot a video for her and she stayed at his studios for two years to learn video directing – and that brought her into contact with other artists.
She won the Lagos Got Talent competition and subsequently performed at the annual Felabration festival where she won the best rapper award.
She was then signed by Chocolate City Music record label and was nominated for an Afrimma award aged just 19.
In 2021 she was asked to record a video for the Grammy’s digital series Global Spin, which she says gives her the belief that she can achieve her goals.
“I’m dreaming like really, really, really high.”