Alex Boyé was born in England to Nigerian parents. He briefly lived in Nigeria during his childhood but was then raised in England by foster parents while his mother stayed in Nigeria. He mostly took care of himself, lived in foster care, or stayed with a relative. At sixteen years old, he found The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and was baptized, later serving a fulltime mission to the England Bristol Mission.
Postmission, he organized a very successful boy band, Awesome, in 1995. While growing up in the Tottenham neighborhood, he was inspired by Motown legends, such as Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye. In order to follow his own musical path, he incorporated soul and Motown influences into a European boy band sound. Awesome signed to Universal Records Europe, selling half a million records and making the Top Ten on pop charts throughout Europe. They performed alongside Brian Adams, The Backstreet Boys, George Michael, Simon and Garfunkel, and MC Hammer.
After moving to Utah, he met his wife, Julie, in a singles ward and got married in the Salt Lake City Temple in 2007. While in Utah, Alex joined the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. He recorded two songs on the Mormon Tabernacle Choir’s Come Thou Fount CD. However, that’s not what launched Alex Boyé to his current fame. “For years, my mother urged me to put some African influence into my music, but I kept insisting that it wasn’t a commercially viable genre,” Alex said. “I’ve done everything else—jazz, pop, hip hop, gospel, heavy metal, even emo—and then I got a phone call from ThePianoGuys wanting me to be in their video singing Swahili. The resulting success of the ‘Peponi’ video had been the biggest response to any of the music I had ever done up to that point, and it’s exciting to see so many people responding to pop with an African twist.”
Following the success of his Africanized Coldplay cover with The Piano Guys, Alex competed in America’s Got Talent with his band, Changing Lanes Experience, in 2015. They were eliminated in the last round of judges cuts. However, he’s not letting anything get in his way.
“What I’m doing now is taking those big arena type songs I sang with Awesome and mixing them with the joyful vibe of African music. The ultimate goal is to make people feel good and give them a few moments of uplift, which as I’ve discovered over the years, can have transforming and even lifesaving potential. I’m glad I finally listened to my mom, and it feels good to be home.”
Now married and a dad and American citizen, Boyé sings on special occasions with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Well-known and respected in the music world, he is especially loved for his covers on YouTube, which garner millions of hits. He continues to release music online, which is available on YouTube and iTunes.
Alex is featured on Mormon.org.
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