Burna Boy has had a terrific year. Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu – his government name – made a cosmic comeback with his 2018 album “Outside” under the Bad Habit/Atlantic Records and the Warner Music Group. He also delivered the explosive “African Giant” album. The “Ye” singer doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon.
When he is not making hits with both foreign and local music acts, or selling out shows at home and abroad, he is getting featured on Billboard or holding down a single in Beyonce’s The Gift Album. Now, he has gotten nominated for a Grammy under the World Best Album category.
Burna is nominated for his African Giant album, alongside the three-times Grammy winner Angelique Kidjo, the Haitian-American flautist, composer and vocalist Nathalie Joachim, the Anatolian Rock and Turkish Psychedelic Folk band, and the jazz collaboration between Bokante and Metropole Orkest.
Considering the monumental steps the African Giant has made in his career as well as in his constantly evolving craft, a Grammy win would not only be befitting. It would, amongst many other things, make him the first Nigerian out of the five that have been nominated under this category in past years, to win it. Femi Kuti, King Sunny Ade, Babatunde Olatunji and Seun Kuti are artists who have been nominated for this category in the past.
Although it would be disingenuous to base the probability of Burna Boy winning the Grammy on his fast-rising prestige as an artist or on the heavy optimism surrounding news of his nomination, it would only further the likelihood of his win.
The African Giant has paid his dues. Despite the distinctness of his work since he started, there has been in recent times a highly powered dedication to his sound, a depth that rises above and intersects with both heavy and whimsical subjects.
Burna has come to be an artist with an undeniable drive, to make an immense impact wherever his music might gain access to, while retaining a groundedness to roots, to an unadulterated blackness that holds the base of his work together.
With the Grammy’s history of snubbing arguably better talents, it doesn’t dispute the fact if Burna wins the award this year, it would be well deserved.