LAGOS (Reuters) – Trendy African music is altering perceptions of the continent as a part of a worldwide cultural shift that marks a “huge second”, Nigerian music artist Burna Boy informed Reuters after hailing his first Grammy award.
Burna Boy was awarded a Grammy for the Finest International Music Album this month for ‘Twice As Tall’ which was launched final yr.
He’s a part of a era of Nigerian music artists, which embody Wizkid and Davido, that has loved international success in recent times as proponents of the Afrobeats sound. The African style is now virtually as prone to be heard in London or Los Angeles as it’s in Lagos.
“It’s an enormous second and an enormous time for African music and Africans basically,” stated Burna Boy, throughout an interview at his residence in Nigeria’s business capital Lagos.
The artist, whose actual identify is Damini Ogulu, stated his award was a part of a “domino impact” that provides Africans extra management over the way in which they’re perceived by means of expertise, as streaming companies take the continent’s arts to a worldwide viewers.
“I didn’t even wish to be African after I was little,” he stated. “I needed to be something however who I used to be, as a result of who we’re wasn’t actually the cool factor to be,” stated the artist, who grew up in southern Nigeria and moved to London as a baby earlier than returning to the west African nation.
He stated his win confirmed that African music was attracting worldwide respect.
These sentiments have been shared by many at Edge Music Academy, within the Jakande district of Lagos, the place college students compose music in a studio decked out with microphones, laptops and a keyboard.
“The long run is vivid,” stated pupil Obi Prince. “The best way Afrobeats is represented on the earth proper now can solely be a begin for Nigerian artists. We simply must do our factor and produce out ourselves extra globally,” he stated.
The academy’s chief govt officer, Michael Tijani, stated Burna Boy’s win was a “big deal” for Nigerian music.
“Folks coming into the business now have a extra concrete perception you can really get so far as anyone else on the earth can go,” he stated.
Reclining in a chair in his residence studio, Burna Boy mirrored on his success.
“You’ll be able to’t point out the highest 5 musicians on the earth with out throwing me or an African in there,” he stated, smiling. “Now we’re eye to eye with the folks we used to look as much as.”
Writing by Alexis Akwagyiram; Enhancing by Marguerita Choy