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Ayọ

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Ayọ (born as Joy Olasunmibo Ogunmakin on 14 September 1980 in Frechen near Cologne, Germany) is a Nigerian-German singer-songwriter. She uses the Yoruba translation Ayọ or Ayo. of her first name Joy.

Her debut album Joyful, which was first released in 2006, reached Double-Platinum status in France, Platinum in Germany and Poland, Gold status in Switzerland and Italy and Greece. The album was released in the United States on 20 November 2007 by Interscope Records.

She has a son, Nile, who was born in late 2005 and a daughter, Billie-Eve, born July 2010, with her partner, the Afro-German reggae singer Patrice. At the end of 2007, she moved with her family to the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan in New York City.

The president of UNICEF France, Jacques Hintzy, announced on 4 February 2009 that the singer was named patron of UNICEF to promote the right to education for all children in the world.

The French production company MK2 produced 2009 the film Ayo Joy a 90 minute documentary about the singer and her life. The film was directed by Raphaël Duroy and is due in cinemas in early 2010.


Biography

Early years
Ayọ was born as fourth child to her Nigerian father and Romani mother from Romania in Germany but lived as a baby for a short time in Nigeria. She has one sister and two brothers. When she was about six years old her mother became addicted to heroin and spent some time in jail. After her parents divorced she and two of her siblings spent periods of time in care and with foster families.

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