Tinny (musician)

Last updated
Tinny on stage in 2012.jpg
Background information
Birth nameNii Addo Quaynor
Born (1982-01-19) 19 January 1982 (age 41)
Origin Accra, Ghana
Genres R&B, Hiplife, Hip hop
Years active1994–present
LabelsKankpe Records

Nii Addo Quaynor (born January 19, 1982), better known by his stage name Tinny, is a Ghanaian Rapper. He was born in Osu, Ghana to Mr. Ricky Tetteh Quaynor and Naa Badu Quaynor. He is the last born of their six children. [1] At the early age of eight, by singing and rapping at parties and funfairs, he got into the music industry. In 1994, he started performing at Fun-World, an entertainment program that was organized every Sunday at the National Theatre (Accra). [2] He has released five studio albums since his debut.


Early life

Tinny was born Tinny Nii Addo Quaynor and grew up in the neighborhood of Osu and La both in Accra, Ghana. Young Tinny had his primary education at the Osu Home School and then went to Hepter International School at Akim Oda. He then went on to Osu Salem JSS and then proceeded to Okuapeman Secondary School for his secondary education. He was the entertainment prefect while he was at Okuapeman Secondary School and he organized shows for the students, as well as performed for them. He is the best friend of an artist known as RAP TWO.

Music career

1994-1998: From Black Nature to Nature and Agony

In his early years, Tinny took up his first stage name Black Nature. He performed at various entertainment shows with that name. While he was in Osu Salem JSS, he joined forces with two of his friends, Salam and Buke, who called themselves "Black Agony" as a duo, and formed a whole new group called "Nature and Agony". This group was managed by Tinny's father, Mr. Ricky Tetteh Quaynor. They performed at by then very popular teenage music shows such as Kiddafest and Fun-World. However, Agony did not like the idea of Tinny's father managing them thus, they left the group. Tinny then went solo to perform at ‘Ecstasy Promotions’ where he chalked the 1st position. When he got to Okuapeman Secondary School, his dad booked sessions for him with Hammer of The Last Two which landed him into being part of the Last 2 family as a 'foot soldier [3] '.

Road To Debut - Makola Kwakwe

It was quite difficult for Tinny to come out since most hiplife artists at the time sang and rapped in Twi and Tinny on the other hand, was a native Ga speaker and was therefore fixed on rapping in his ga language. His dream of making it to the top of the hiplife ladder came true when Hammer of The Last Two secured a deal for him with Abraham Ohene Djan (CEO of OM Studios). Abraham was carried away by his impressive lyrical flow after listening to his album, and he agreed to produce him. With a beat maker like Hammer at the helm of things, Nii Addo decided to use the name Tinny as his stage name because it was his real name and blasted onto the Ghanaian music scene in 2003 with ‘Makola Kwakwe’. He quickly became a sensation, gracing events and dominating radio and TV in his category. Tinny's fame increased when he was featured on the remix of ‘Oye Ohene’. He went on with his career and featured artists like Paa Dogo, Obrafour, K.K. Fosu, Etuoaboba, Bandana, FBS and Okra. He goes on to bless Obrafour's Execution Diary with his voice on a track called I Believe I Can Fly (Heko Ejorko). Tinny won several awards following his debut like the New Artiste of the Year at both Ghana Music Awards 2004 and Ghana Music Awards UK 2004 and a Youth Excellence award for being the ‘Youth Musician of the Year 2003’. He was also awarded for being the Best Guest Entertainment Musical Artist by Great Lamptey Mills.

In 2007, Tinny was picked by MTV to have his video for 'Incomplete' shot by world-renowned director Rachel Watanabe-Batton. This track was taken from his Aletse Ogboo album. In 2008, Tinny had the chance to record a single with Ja Rule when Ja Rule was in Ghana to perform during the 2008 Ghana Music Awards.

Since his debut he has maintained his position as an A-list artiste in Ghana, and as kept his name on top of the music charts. [4]


His knack for making Ga (a local dialect he usually sings and raps in) proverbs sound more appealing and the distinct style with which he flows (mostly rhyming) has not only endeared him to the youth across Africa but won him the respect of native Ga speaking people. “Ricky, Naa Badu, Nakutso Bi” a popular line in most of his songs confirms the immeasurable support he receives from his parents Mr. Ricky Tetteh Quaynor and Christie–Lee Naa Badu Quaynor. [5]


Cadbury Fairtrade Campaign & Zingolo

Cadbury launched a campaign using Ghanaian traditional culture to raise additional funds for cocoa growing communities. The campaign was a promotion for Tinny's track Zingolo, as well as the Ghana-based dance troupe High Spirits. The Zingolo single is available on iTunes, with proceeds going to CARE, which funds education in Ghana's cocoa growing communities. The move follows the recent certification of Cadbury Dairy Milk across the UK and Ireland and builds on the work of the Cadbury Cocoa Partnership, a 10-year initiative launched in 2008.

The Zingolo campaign was developed at Fallon, London, by executive creative director Richard Flintham, creative directors Chris Bovill, John Allison, creatives Filip Tyden, Dan Watts, Chris Bovill, John Allison, account director Nathalie Clarke, agency producer Tom Goodwin, executive producer Nicky Barnes and agency producer Gemma Knight. [6]

The song, "Zingolo", was released on the newly established record label Glass and a Half Full Records, established by Cadbury's Dairy Milk following their move to Fairtrade chocolate. [7] The song, and the record label, were also set up to celebrate "all things Ghana, its people, its rappers, its dancers, its cultural figures and, of course, its cocoa beans" [7]

The advertisement was broadcast on television and cinema. Featuring a 1-minute edit of the song, it is a short music video showing Ghana and a "cocoa head". It is their fourth advertisement in the Glass and a Half Full Productions campaign, which began in 2007 with the award-winning Gorilla advertisement. [8]

Mytinny – Contribution Campaign

On 2 January 2007 he organized and performed two songs at his grand New Year's party for 300 HIV/AIDS orphaned children at Manya-krobo in the eastern region of Ghana to mark the beginning of his “Mytinny – Contribution Campaign” which he says would be his Annual Social Responsibility Project. [9] In January 2012 Tinny, as a former student of Okuapeman, visited the school to celebrate his birthday with the blind students with the aim of putting smiles on their faces. Among the items donated included food and drinks, talking calculators, 51 packets of braille sheets among others. The birthday party was organized by Hear Our Say Ghana, an Accra-based Non-Governmental Organization with support from Akua Pokua and Arisa, volunteers from Belgium and Japan respectively. Richard Berko, Tinny's Manager told BEATWAVES that students always looked up to them as their source of encouragement. 'I think most of us are in a position to help them and that is exactly what Tinny has done'.Speaking to the children, Tinny encouraged them to learn extra hard to become influential people in society, despite the poor conditions they found themselves in now. According to Tinny, he was concerned about the children's well-being, hence his visit. [10]

Glo Ghana Ambassador

In 2009, Tinny was listed as one of Glo Ghana's Ambassadors. [11] [12]

BET Cypher

BET Hip Hop Awards Ghana Cypher 2010 was created exclusively for BET International. It Features D-Black, Sarkodie, Kwaku-T, Ayigbe Edem, BabyG, Tinny and Reggie Rockstone. Its beat was produced by Green Gafacci from Black Avenue Muzik, and Produced & Directed by Lilian N. Blankson for Princess Productions. [13]


Awards and nominations

2004Youth Excellence AwardsYoung Musician of the YearHimselfWon
2004Ghana Music AwardsNew Artiste of the YearHimselfWon
2004Ghana Music Awards (UK Version)New Artiste of the YearHimselfWon
2004 Channel O Music Video Awards Best African West AwardDzormoNominated [16]
2008Ghana Music AwardsHiplife Song of the YearKaa Bu AmeNominated [17]
2008Ghana Music AwardsHiplife Artiste of the YearHimselfNominated [17]
2008Ghana Music AwardsHiplife Album of the YearKaa Bu AmeNominated [17]
2009Hip Hop World AwardsAfrican Artiste of the YearHimselfWon
20094syte Music Video AwardsBest Male VideoRingtoneNominated
2009Ghana Music AwardsBest Collaboration of the Year (Shared with Czar and Richie)Mercy LokkoNominated [18]
2009Ghana Music AwardsBest Collaboration of the Year (Shared with Slim Busterr)NhyiraNominated [18]
2010Ghana Music AwardsHip Hop /Hiplife song of the YearRingtoneNominated
2010Ghana Music AwardsHip Hop /Hiplife Artiste of the YearHimselfNominated
2010Ghana Music AwardsBest Rapper of the YearHimselfNominated
2010 MOBO Awards Best African ActHimselfNominated [19]
20114syte Music Video AwardsBest Collaboration (Shared with Jay Ghartey)Go Hard All DayNominated
2011Ghana Hiphop & R&B AwardsHiphop Album (Of The Decade) Makola KwakweNominated [20]
20124syte Music Video AwardsBest Male VideoAnacondaNominated [21]
2012 Queen of The Ga-Adangbe Beauty Pageant and Awards Ga-Adangbe Icon of the DecadeHimselfWon
2012Yfm Loud in GH AwardsBest Male ArtisteHimselfNominated [22]

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