The 2020 Grammys are tonight and African talent is on full display along with other great talents from the rest of the world. Impressive musicians from across the continent are nominated in the world music category while others feature on Grammy-nominated projects. Let’s take a look at the various artists looking to secure a gold-plated gramophone on one of global music’s biggest nights and their chances of taking home that coveted hardware.
On this side of the musical pond, Burna Boy is the headline African artist at this year’s Grammy awards. The Port Harcourt-born 28 year-old had a stellar 2019 taking home over 13 awards home and abroad. His critically acclaimed album “African Giant” is nominated in the “Best World Music” category – his first of such nominations. In total, Burna Boy amassed over 600 million streams in 2019 and charted in different markets across the world. He features on Beyonce’s “Lion King: The Gift” album which is also nominated for a “Best Pop Vocal Album” grammy. From all indications, Burna Boy is the frontrunner to win this award even though he has tough competition in three-time Grammy Award winner Angelique Kidjo who is also nominated in “Best World Music Category”.
If this award relied on past wins, this would be an easy one for one of the most iconic musicians to ever come out of the continent – Angelique Kidjo. She has been named “Africa’s premier diva” by Time Magazine and her album ‘Logozo’ is ranked number 37 in the Greatest Dance Albums of All Time list compiled by Vice magazine’s Thump website. The woman is a certified legend. She is nominated in the “Best World Music” category alongside Burna Boy, Haiti’s Nathalie Joachim With Spektral Quartet, multi-cultural group Bokanté & Metropole Orkest and Turkish rock band Altin Gün. Kidjo is nominated for her album Celia, which pays homage to the late Afro-Cuban legend Celia Cruz. Given her record at the Grammys, she is Burna Boy’s biggest contender for the “Best World Music” crown. However, she is unlikely to win given Burna Boy’s seemingly larger reach and audience.
The inventor of the slang “Detty” is not self-nominated for a grammy but he is featured on the Grammy-nominated Latin urban album “Oasis” by Colombian singer J Balvin and Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny. Nigerian producer Legendury Beatz produced the track “Como Un Bebe” thus also securing credits on a Grammy-nominated album. The album has a good chance to take the win again its competition: “Indestructible” by Flor de Toloache, “Almadura” by iLe, “El Mal Querer” by Rosalía.
Yemi Alade, Wizkid, Tiwa Savage and Shatta Wale
None of these acts are self-nominated but they all feature on Beyonce’s “Lion King: The Gift” album which is nominated in the “Best Pop Vocal Album” category. While Beyonce is a global superstar and has many Grammys already to her name, she has to contend with Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next”, Ed Sheeran’s “No. 6 Collaborations” and Billie Eilish’s “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?” – all monster projects that did mind-boggling numbers that the Beyonce project didn’t.
What are your predictions for the African contingent at the Grammys today? Whatever your predictions, remember to tune and support our own!
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