Nigerian music stars, Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu, better known as Burna Boy and Ayodeji Balogun, better known as Wizkid, on Sunday night, won their first ever Grammy Awards.
Burna Boy bagged the much-coveted Grammy award in the ‘Best Global Album’ category for his ‘TWICE AS TALL’ album.
He was nominated alongside Tuareg Desert rock group, Tinariwen; NYC afrobeat outfit, Antibalas; Brazilian-American, Bebel Gilberto; and British-Indian sitar player, Anoushka Shankar.
This is the second consecutive time Burna Boy has been nominated for the Grammys.
His previous album, ‘African Giant’ was nominated at the 62nd Grammy Awards for ‘Best World Music Album’, but the award went to Beninoise singer, Angélique Kidjo, who dedicated the award to Burna Boy and said he was leading the pack of young Africans who will shake up the global music space.
Burnaboy is the first winner of the recently renamed category, formerly known as Best World Music Album.
Wizkid, on the other hand, won a Grammy for the Best Music Video’ for his role in ‘Brown Skin Girl’, Beyonce’s 2019 hit song. The Best Music Video award is given to the artist, video director, and video producer.
Their video bested fellow nominees Future with Drake, Anderson.Paak, Harry Styles, and Woodkid.
Here are seven Nigerians who have won the awards in the past:
Helen Folasade Adu (Sade Adu)
Sade Adu, British-Nigerian singer, who turned 62 on 16 January, 2021 has won the award.
She made history as the first Nigerian singer to win a Grammy.
Born on January 16, 1959, in Ibadan, Nigeria, Sade was raised in London. She had been nominated for the Grammy awards nine times and won four times.
She won her first Grammy in 1986 in the Best New Artist category. She also won the Best R&B Performance by a duo or group with vocals in 1994 for the song, “No Ordinary Love.”
Sade also won another Grammy in 2002 in the category of the Best Pop Vocal Album, with the song “Lovers Rock,” while in 2011, she won the Best R&B Performance by a group with vocals for “Soldier of Love.”
69 year-old Sikiru Adepoju is a percussionist and recording artist from Nigeria, primarily in the genres of traditional African music and world music. He plays a variety of instruments and styles.
Born in Eruwa, Oyo State, Adepoju was a member of Ebenezer Obey’s Inter Reformers Band until he left for the US in 1985. In the US, the ‘drummer boy’ joined O. J. Ekemode’s Nigerian All-Stars, and three months later met Babatunde Olatunji.
He became an integral part of Olatunji’s Drums of Passion, and through Olatunji met Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart.
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.
Olusegun Olumide Adeola Samuel (Seal)
Born Henry Olusegun Adeola Samuel in 1963, he is better known by his professional name– Seal. He is a British-Nigerian musician, singer and songwriter best known for his 1994 hit song, “Kiss from a Rose.” He has 14 Grammy nominations to his name and has won four. His song, “Kiss From A Rose” earned him three Grammy awards in 1996 and in 2011 he nabbed his fourth “Imagine”. He holds one of the highest numbers of Grammy awards by a Nigerian.
Born in 1960, Lekan Babalola is a Nigerian jazz percussionist and musician who started playing the conga at an early age. He has seven albums to his name and two Grammy awards. He began his professional career after joining a band called Samba Samba Band and later New York City-based Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers band, where he perfected playing the Bongo drums and performing jazz music. In 2006, he became Nigeria’s first Grammy Award winner for his work on Ali Farka Touré‘s In the Heart of the Moon which he was credited in three tracks. He also won a second Grammy in 2009 for his work on Cassandra Wilson‘s 2008 album titled Loverly.
Nigerian-American Hakeem Seriki, better known by his stage name Chamillionaire is a rapper, entrepreneur, and investor from Houston, Texas. He was born November 28, 1979 in Washington D.C to a Muslim Nigerian father and an African-American Christian mother. He moved to Houston, Texas at the age of four
He began his career independently with local releases in 2002, including the collaborative album Get Ya Mind Correct with fellow Houston rapper and childhood friend Paul Wall. He signed to Universal Records in 2005 and released The Sound of Revenge under Universal. It included hit singles “Turn It Up” featuring Lil’ Flip and the number-one, Grammy-winning hit “Ridin'” featuring Krayzie Bone of Bone Thugs-n-Harmony. The song won the Grammy in 2007 for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group. It was also nominated for Best Rap song.
Chamillionaire is also known for his most anticipated Mixtape Messiah series, which ran from 2004 until 2009.
Kevin Olusola, born October 5, 1988 is a Nigerian-American musician, beatboxer, cellist, rapper, record producer, singer, and songwriter. He is also a polyglot.
He was born in Owensboro, Kentucky, to Nigerian-born Oluwole Olusola, a psychiatrist, and Grenadian-born Curline Paul, a nurse.
Olusola’s parents discovered his musical talent when he was six months old and decided to put him in music lessons. He started the piano at age 4, the cello at age 6, and alto sax.
Olusola is best known as the beatboxer of the vocal band, Pentatonix. After the group won NBC’s The Sing-Off in 2011, they released five albums, which all charted in the top 5 of the Billboard 200 charts, have sold over 2 million records, and have amassed more than two billion views on their YouTube channel.
His group won the Grammys in 2015 and 2016 for Best Arrangement, Instrumental or A Cappella. The group also won in 2017 for Best Country Duo/Group Performance for the song – Jolene, which featured Dolly Parton.
A British-Nigerian actress, singer and song writer, who played the lead role in the biopic Harriet and was nominated for several awards. Her full name is: Cynthia Onyedinmanasu Chinasaokwu Erivo. She was born in Stockwell England on 8 January, 1987.
Cynthia is multi-talented. Apart from picking awards in theatre and cinema, she also won a Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album in 2017 for Colour Purple.