Senegalese American singer, songwriter, record producer, and entrepreneur

Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam (/ˈkɒn/; born April 16, 1973), known mononymously as Akon, is a Senegalese-American singer, songwriter, record producer, and entrepreneur. Akon began his career as a singer-rapper, with his big break arriving in 2004 with the release of the singles "Locked Up" and "Lonely." Both songs achieving great success, leading up to an album deal with Universal Motown. In the 2010s, Akon branched out onto philanthropy (Akon Lighting Africa), property development (Akon City in Senegal), television/movie production, politics, and others.

A black male clad in a suit speaking into a microphone seen in the foreground
Akon in July 2015
Aliaune Damala Badara Akon Thiam

(1973-04-16) April 16, 1973 (age 50)
Other names
  • Akon
  • El Negreeto
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • rapper
  • record producer
  • entrepreneur
  • philanthropist
Years active1996–present
OrganizationAkon Lighting Africa
AgentJohnny Wright
  • Mor Thiam (father)
  • Kine Gueye Thiam (née Gueye, mother)
AwardsFull list
Musical career
OriginNewark, New Jersey, USA
  • Vocals
  • keyboards
  • synthesizer
  • drums
Akon Logo.png

He grew up in Senegal but at age 7, his family settled in New Jersey. His father, Mor Thiam was a successful jazz percussionist. Soon after moving back to the United States, Akon discovered hip-hop for the first time. Akon has collaborated with and produced for some of the biggest names in the music industry.

Akon has been nominated for many awards including 5 Grammy Awards, 3 American Music Awards winning 1 and 4 MTV Video Music Awards. Billboard ranked Akon number 6 on the list of Top Digital Songs Artists of the decade.[1]

Akon had been friends with Michael Jackson until his death. Akon released a tribute song called "Cry Out Of Joy". In 2010, a song that Akon sung with Jackson, "Hold My Hand", was released. It was also released on Michael.


Studio albumsEdit


  1. "Billboard - Music Charts, Music News, Artist Photo Gallery & Free Video". Billboard. Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Akon Talks 4 New Albums". Archived from the original on October 30, 2019. Retrieved December 26, 2019.

Other websitesEdit