Costi at the Grammy Awards, Los Angeles, 2012
14 January 1978 |
|Genres||Dance, pop, rock, opera, Balkan, trance|
|Associated acts||Shaggy, Bob Sinclar, Faydee, Mario Winans, Mohombi, Kat DeLuna, Pitbull, Andrea, Galena, Viki Miljković, DJ Spaz, Shahzoda, Nikol Bulat, Morena|
Costi Ioniță (Romanian pronunciation: ['kosti jo'nitsə]), known mononymously as Costi (born 14 January 1978), is a Romanian singer, songwriter and record producer, regarded as one of the most celebrated ethnic Romanian vocalist of muzică orientală (manele).
Born in Constanţa, he began his musical career by singing Romanian traditional music. He however achieved fame as a member of the pop boy band Valahia, enjoying several hits. In 1999 he started to experiment with manele, a composite Balkanic musical style, and in 2000 he collaborated with acclaimed manele singer Adrian Minune on Of, viaţa mea ("Oh, my life"), one of the first mainstream successes of the genre in Romania. Following Valahia's dissolution in 2002, he started a solo career, concentrating on manele. In this period he collaborated with several well known manele singers. Unlike some Romani counterparts, Costi Ioniţă does not use a nickname. Despite his success in manele, he also experimented with other musical styles, such as rock, dance or opera, avoiding to be identified with manele or to be too closely associated with the Romani culture.
In the late 2000s Costi Ioniţă extended his act in the Balkans and Middle East, achieving success in Turkey and Saudi Arabia with the song Ca la Amsterdam ("Like in Amsterdam"), a tune included in the 2010 compilation issued by Café del Mar. He also launched several hits in Bulgaria, in collaboration with local singers.
Since 2008 Ioniţă acts as producer and songwriter for the pop/rock girl band Blaxy Girls. In 2009 he reached the finals of the Romanian selection for the Eurovision Song Contest with three songs he composed, one sung by himself, one by Blaxy Girls, and the third by another group, IMBA.
In July 2007 he launched a music channel, Party TV, and in October that year his company received licence for another two music TV channels, one of them, Mynele TV, dedicated to promoting manele.
He is also involved together with Bulgarian singer Andrea in the Sahara music band, a group that has released several hits and singles featuring Bob Sinclar and Shaggy and another one featuring Mario Winans. In 2011-2015 he featured with Serbian singers Ana Kokić, Sandra Afrika, Viki Miljković and Croatian singers Nikol Bulat and Morena.
In 2011, he co-wrote the song "Zaleilah" together with Ionescu Elena and Secada Dihigo Omar. The song represented Romania in 2012 Eurovision Song Contest and was sung by Romanian Latino band Mandinga. It finished 12th overall, but was a great commercial success.
In 2014, Costi Ioniță had an international hit with the multilingual song in Arabic, English and Spanish titled "Habibi (I Need Your Love)" co-written by him and Australian singer of Lebanese origin Faydee (full name Fady Fatrouny). The song by Shaggy, Mohombi, Faydee and Costi has charted internationally and spun off a Bulgarian version by Bulgarian singer Galena and Faydee and a Russian version by the Uzbek singer Shahzoda with Faydee and Dr. Costi. He has cooperated and produced for a number of artists including Shaggy, Australian singer Faydee, Bulgarian singer Andrea amongst many. International collaborations have ensued as in the 2017 Shaggy hit featuring Jamaican singer OMI in "Seasons" and Astra featuring Kevin Lyttle & Costi in "Turn Me On Fuego", a remake of Kevin Lyttle's 2003 hit "Turn Me On".
Singles featured in
|2015||"I Need Your Love"
(credited to Shaggy feat.
Mohombi, Faydee, Costi)
*Did not appear in the official Belgian Ultratop 50 charts, but rather in the bubbling under Ultratip charts.
- Margaret H. Beissinger, "Muzică Orientală": Identity and Popular Culture in Postcommunist Romania, in Donna A. Buchanan (ed), Balkan popular culture and the Ottoman ecumene: music, image, and regional political discourse. Scarecrow Press, 2007. ISBN 978-0-8108-6021-6. pp. 125-126
- (in Romanian) Costi Ioniţă împlineşte 32 de ani. Ziare.com, January 14, 2010. Accessed on January 22, 2010.
- (in Romanian) Mediafax, O piesă a lui Costi Ioniţă va apărea pe compilaţia "Cafe del Mar". Gândul, January 22, 2010. Accessed on January 22, 2010
- (in Romanian) Costi Ioniţă a manelizat Bulgaria! Archived 2009-02-01 at the Wayback Machine.. Academia Caţavencu, January 28, 2009. Accessed on January 22, 2010
- (in Romanian) Manelistul Costi Ioniţă, responsabil pentru succesul trupei de pop-rock Blaxy Girls Archived July 8, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.. Antena3.ro, October 3, 2008. Accessed on January 22, 2010.
- (in Romanian) Costi Ioniţă are trei piese în finala Eurovision. Gândul, January 31, 2009. Accessed on January 22, 2010.
- (in Romanian) Costi Ioniţă la cârma postului Party TV. Evenimentul Zilei, August 2, 2007. Accessed on January 22, 2010.
- (in Romanian) Mihaela Minune Costi Ioniţă a obţinut licenţă pentru posturile Mynele TV şi Musiklub. Mediafax, October 9, 2007. Accessed on January 22, 2010.
- "Faydee discography". austriancharts.at. Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Faydee discography". ultratop.be/fr/. Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Faydee discography". lescharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "Faydee discography". dutchcharts.nl. Hung Medien. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
- Billboard.com: Shaggy page
- Billboard: Shaggy Featuring Mohombi, Faydee, Costi discography on Dance/Mix Show Airplay
- Billboard: Shaggy Featuring Mohombi, Faydee, Costi discography on Mainstream Top 40
- Billboard: Shaggy Featuring Mohombi, Faydee, Costi discography on Rhythmic chart