Wizkid and Tems Absent from Grammy’s List of African Award Winners

Ahead of the 66th Grammy Award on February 4, the organisers have released a list of African musicians who have bagged the golden gramophones since the 1960s.

The list sparked controversies on social media after singers Wizkid and Tems were omitted among the 10 African winners of the prestigious award.

Per the list, Miriam Makeba, the late South African singer, remained the first from Africa to win a Grammy award.

Sade, the pop singer, followed in the list, making her the first Nigerian to win the global award while Burna Boy is the most recent and last Nigerian to win the prestigious gong.

Grammy Award – Africa Winners List

Miriam Makeba (South Africa) — Best Folk Recording (with Harry Belafonte) – 1966

Sade Adu (Nigeria/UK) — Best New Artist – 1986

Ali Farka Touré (Mali) — Best World Music Album – 1994

Cesária Évora (Cape Verde) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2004

Youssou N’Dour (Senegal) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2005

Angélique Kidjo (Benin/France) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2008

RedOne (Morocco) — Best Dance/Electronic Album – 2010

Tinariwen (Mali/Algeria/Libya) — Best World Music Album – 2012

Burna Boy (Nigeria) — Best Global Music Album – 2021

Black Coffee (South Africa) – Best Dance/ Electronic Album — 2022

Recall in March 2021, Wizkid bagged his first-ever Grammy award for his role in ‘Brown Skin Girl’, a 2019 song by Beyonce, the American musician. The project won the ‘Best Music Video’ category.

In 2023, Tems won her own first-ever Grammy award. The Afrobeats singer won the ‘Best Melodic Rap Performance’ category for her role in ‘Wait for U’, the 2022 hit song by Future featuring Drake.

Upon the release of the list by the organisers of the Grammys, questions were asked about what yardsticks were used to assemble the list.

Some users on X have argued that Wizkid and Tems were left off the list because they won Grammys as featured artists.

It, however, remains unclear why both music heavyweights from Nigeria were omitted from the list.

The 2024 Grammy Awards will take place on Sunday, February 4 in Los Angeles.

The award organizers also created the ‘Best African Music Performance’ category to recognize African artists.

Asake, Olamide, Tems, Burna Boy, Olamide, and Ayra Starr were all nominated in this category.

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