How come Olamide has never won any international awards?

Nigerian rap sensation, Olamide recently granted an interview and when the question about awards arose, here’s what he said: “If they give me award or not, it does not define me. God bless whoever wins any award. God bless the organisers for the initiative. Thanks for creating an avenue to commend us for our work.”

Despite this singular quote being out of context, we can assume that when Olamide said awards do not define him, he was clearly referring to the local ones. Recognition on international platforms is all the definition that artistes in Africa need and work for. We’ve seen this with Wizkid who has won a number of international awards back to back in 2016 and can now safely be referred to as an artiste who has gained respect on the international front. But we’re not here for another Wizkid-appreciation post.

This is about Olamide who sadly, has not won any international awards in the 5-year span of his career. We say five years because his first hit track “Eni Duro” was released in 2011, so we choose not to acknowledge the years of hardwork that led up to that monster hit (and this is highly controversial). Five years may seem like a short time to demand an artiste to move mountains and cross oceans to earn an international award but this should be more about the quality of work done in such short period than anything else.

Five years, yes. Let’s never forget that there’s also been five successful albums and in fact, a sixth one in the offing. The hit tracks are countless, the concerts are back to back (in his parlance), OLIC is one of the most-anticipated music events in London and Lagos, so why is Olamide being snubbed by international awards organisers?! Snubbed not as regards nominations but in clinching the actual prize…

Many have argued that Olamide’s content is restricted to a Nigerian market as he raps in his local language and even sometimes, his Ijebu dialect so he fails to connect with a global audience.

As viable as this argument sounds, it still may not hold water.

If you’re familiar with great African music, then you’d know Angelique Kidjo. The Grammy award-winning artiste from Benin Republic has stayed true to the African culture and has excellently blended the tradition with the powerful messages in her music, all of which transcend the continent. The New York Times wrote about Kidjo in 2014 and in defining her style, it said, “she has kept African languages and an African sensibility at the core of her music.” We might add that her indigenous music, that is not understood by the larger percentage of her global audience, has won her three Grammy awards and two nominations, the most recent being in the Best World Music Album category.

So we wonder what some of you are saying about indigenous content…

Just last week, Wizkid won in the Best African Act category at the MOBOs in Glasgow, a category that also had Olamide and Tiwa Savage as contenders. So far this year, Wizkid has not released as many songs as the latter two. From Olamide, we’ve had Abule Sowo, Who you epp, Konkobility and loads of collaborations, but none still make up for quality content and this might be where the whole point leads. Giving us hits back to back is good stuff and we appreciate it but how about hits that can compete on a global scale and survive?

Olamide is good enough to compete, hence the nominations but as it appears, there’s need for him to develop his craft as a musician. Let’s bring Wizkid into this for a third time (for lack of a better model, since he’s winning all the awards). You’ll agree that Wizkid has a feel to his vibe, it’s incomparable, it’s what makes the brand. It’s what he brings on to every feature that turns those songs into the magic that they are…it’s that feel he brought on to Drake’s One Dance (although debatable) and DJs Buckz and Maphorisa’s Soweto Baby (this one is undeniable). Olamide needs to discover himself and once he does, we’ll feel it in the music. For us, tracks like “Eyan Mayweather” and “Ilefo Illuminati” completely define the Olamide that is able to bring home international awards.

Consider this our layman’s perspective just because we love music and are willing to spare some two cents!



Comments (29)

  1. After olamide na olamide baddo ooo,baba i respect u

  2. Thanks to you all olamide lovers one love for naddo sneh street king.baba for the street

  3. King baddo is d best

  4. baddo na the best even with yoruba we still love u after na u i swear down fuck haterz

  5. Badoo is one of d best rapper in d world,d reasons why he’s nt winnin d international award is bcus most of all his hit songs speak his language lot,
    when u look Tekno,Runtown,patoranking,falz,M I ,ice prince. They speak english in their songs nd in d end of d day they got nominated or win d award

  6. some artist that recieve interntnal award r nt sucesful as bado,,,so efi omo olomo le oo

  7. Olamide is best he is my king i love you like my father

  8. Award is a commendation not a Reward,so even thou you dont commend Ola, that doesnt change the fact that Bado is unique and ofcourse the Best.

  9. d stuff is beyond just music olamide don’t want to pay the price
    it deep
    he is simply thinking about the end

  10. aworld or not olamide is the best

  11. God bless those that love baddo
    Olamide always d best

  12. God bless those that love baddo
    Olamide? always d best

  13. olamide is the best he doesnt need international awards i love him and he’s son

  14. Yes that is true, i love ola he ‘s the best in Nigeria as a hole

  15. Comment:international or no international. ….. ola still remain Nigeria number 1

  16. Wizkid has done nothing dis year to beat olamide to those awards…shabba is d biggest flop of d year and I can do better than baba nla…..Olamide has hungry fans that crave for his music to quench their thirst…haterz talking bout orobo forgot a patriotic song like I love lagos,a motivational street up like abule sowo,a sensual konkobility,a hardcore owoblow….what we talking about na…Wizkid just backed up one dance so what?????…Olamide is Nigeria’s golden boy

  17. Comment:internatonal awart du not mean enything olamide is the best

  18. Comment:internatiomnal award or not he is still d best

  19. Comment:despite olamide is not issued d aword of international rapper. dat dos not take anything away from his ability. because olamide remaines who he is as king baddo..the y b n l boss….

  20. Comment :award or not ola I love you

  21. Comment:Hes the best awards

  22. In as much as i want to agree with the writer, Awards does not really add or remove anything from you. Let’s not forget that most of our awards are based on voting hence, the worst person on that category can clinch it if he has a large fan base.

  23. Thonnie Marcus Maxi

    Olamide does not need international award to upp his career.He is the best and will continue to be the best!

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