Hailing from North West London, Ian Greenidge (aka Donae’o) grew up listening to Rap, Afrobeat, and Caribbean music. His fondness for the likes of 2Pac, Notorious B.I.G., and D’Angelo instilled in him a desire to emulate his idols. Donae’o released his first single, Falling, in 2002. A mix of UK Garage, R&B and Hip Hop, the single was followed by the release My Philosophy (Bounce). Over the next few years, Donae’o released a mix of EPs and singles including Colours, Change, and Devil in a Blue Dress. 2009 saw him appear alongside Lethal Bizzle on the track Go Hard, while also inking a deal with My-Ish Records.
Donae’o’s debut album, Party Hard, appeared that year along with the single Watching Her Move. Releases from Donae’o slowed over the next few years, yet he kept working, appearing on tracks by the likes of Shy FX, Mike Delinquent, and Foreign Beggars. 2011 saw the release of the free album Indigo Child as well as the singles Big Ben and Move to Da Gyal Dem. Donae’o’s third album, The Forest of Zephron, appeared a couple of years later in 2013, and opted for a funkier house direction than his previous material. With a renewed vigor, more releases from Donae’o followed, with singles such as Mami No Like, What Is Love, and My Circle, along with a remix version featuring Wiley and Ghetts. Donae’o also continued with collaborations, appearing on the U.K. charting single Lock Doh by Giggs at the end of 2016.
Donae’o (was always destined to make a career out of music after growing up in a house where melodies were a major force. His mother was a singer and, as a youngster growing up in North West London, it was common place for her to be heard belting out tunes in the house. A young Donae’o was also a regular companion when she was out performing, and he loved soaking up the atmosphere. In fact you could say this is where he felt most at home.
His was never a story of numerous talent shows and performing in school plays, but by the time he was in his mid teens he had already attracted a management outfit, and released first single ‘Falling’. Along with ‘Bounce’, this track made an impact on the underground during Donae’o’s teens, laying the foundations for his future success. “Both of these songs kick-started my career,” says the now 25-year-old.
Signing to Island Records in 2016, Donae’o releases ‘Black’, featuring JME and Dizzee Rascal. Stream the video below via YouTube.