While it is good news for Nigeria that Burna Boy has been nominated for the 2020 Grammy, it is pertinent to not that he isn’t the first Nigerian to be
While it is good news for Nigeria that Burna Boy has been nominated for the 2020 Grammy, it is pertinent to not that he isn’t the first Nigerian to be nominated for a Grammy. He got nominated for the 62nd Grammys in the Best World Music Album category with for his work on ‘African Giant’.
A few Nigerians have indeed made the nation proud in the past with Grammy nominations for their original work as well as for their minor contributions to foreign work. But only one brought home the award.
Femi Kuti: The eldest son of Afrobeat pioneer, Fela Kuti and a grandchild of a political campaigner, women’s rights activist and traditional aristocrat, Funmilayo Ransome Kuti has received more Grammy nominations than any other Nigerian. Femi who began his musical career playing in his father’s band, Egypt 80 has been nominated four times in the Best World Music category. His original body of works nominated for the Grammys are:
- Fight to Win [Grammy 2003]: “Fight to Win” was released in mid-October 2001. The album featured a number of respected rap artists like Mos Def and Common.
- Day by Day [Grammy 2010]: “Day by Day” released in mid-October 2008. A definitive album that helped to establish Femi as a true original with his own unique style; it was nominated for a Grammy award.
- Africa for Africa [Grammy 2012]: “Africa for Africa” was released in 2011.
- No Place for My Dream [Grammy 2014]: “No Place for My Dream” was released in June 2013 under Knitting Factory Records.
King Sunny Ade: The juju singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist has been nominated for the grammy twice. His original body of works nominated for the Grammys are:
- Synchro System [Grammy 1984]: It was the second of King Sunny Adé’s three releases for Island Records, following on the heels of 1982’s Juju Music but was not as critically well-received as the first. The album was re-released in 1990 under the variant spelling Synchro System.
- Odu [Grammy 1999]: Odu was released in 1998 on Mesa/Atlantic. Recorded at Dockside Studios, Maurice, Louisiana, it was produced by Andrew Frankel and features traditional Yoruba music. Odù means oracle in the Yoruba divination systems of Ifá.
Babatunde Olatunji: He was nominated once for his original body of work,
- Love Drum talk [Grammy 1998]
Born in April 1927, the drummer, educator, social activist, and recording artist, died on April 6, 2003.
Oluseun Anikulapo Kuti: He is the youngest son of famous afrobeat pioneer Fela Kuti. Seun leads his father’s former band Egypt 80. He has only been nominated once for the Grammys.
- Black Times [Grammy 2019]
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The critically acclaimed Nigerian novelist and award-winning author of Americanah was also nominated for a Grammy award for her feminist-inspired collaboration with Beyonce, on her 2013 track, ‘Flawless’. Following her TEDx talk on why ‘We Should All Be Feminists,’ Beyonce incorporated the writer’s essay into her single, which further brought more life to her craft.
Sikiru Adepoju: He is a percussionist and recording artist primarily in the genres of traditional African music. He plays a variety of instruments and styles. He was part of Mickey Hart’s group, Planet Drum, whose title album won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album in 1991, the first year there was a Grammy in that category. He was also part of Mickey Hart’s latest group Global Drum Project, whose title album won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album at the 51st annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles 8 February 2009. He was Ebenezer Obey’s former drummer.
Burna Boy’s ‘African Giant’ was released on July 26, 2019 and is his fourth studio album. The album featured guest appearances from Zlatan Ibile, Jorja Smith, Jeremih, Serani, M.anifest, Damian Marley, Angelique Kidjo, Future and YG.The Grammy Awards will be held on Monday 27th January 2020.