As we gear up for the 66th edition of the Grammy Awards, here are 12 distinct Nigerian albums that have received a nomination in the history of the prestigious award.
With the fast paced growth of Afrobeats as a genre if music and an increasing popularity of Nigerian artists in different parts of the world, international award recognitions has continued to be a constant and on the rise in the past few years.
For many other awards might be viewed as just awards but brand Nigerian music possesses has led to a recognition of Nigerian projects by an awards many categorize as the award of other music awards, The Grammys.
This exemplary growth of Afrobeats and African music as a whole is worth celebrating as the Recording Academy in an official announced in 2023 confirmed that African music will now get its own category at the Grammy Awards starting with the 66th edition which will hold in February, 2024.
Many had initially expressed concerns of Nigerian or African artists as a whole not receiving considerations in other categories but the announcement of the list of nominees for the Grammy Awards 2024 put these concerns to rest as Nigerian artists received nominations in other categories aside from the Best African Music category.
It is one thing for a song to be recognized but an entire album or EP from an artist receiving a recognition on such a big stage is what many will categorize as the icing on the cake for any artist.
This feat is worth celebrating in all ramifications and with this in mind we have combined a list of 12 distinct albums from Nigerian artists that have been recognized as noteworthy and remarkable enough to receive a Grammy Award nomination over the years.
Which Nigerian Album Has Received A Grammy Award Nomination?
12. I Told Them By Burna Boy
An album many have categorized as a complete body of work that shows the evolution of Burna Boy as an artist and also cements his status as a leading figure of the afro-fusion sound is what ‘I Told Them’ was for the singer and this effort was recognized by the Recording Academy with a nomination in the Best World Albums category ahead of the 66th edition of the Grammy Awards.
This became a huge feat for the singer as it became his 4th album to receive a Grammy Award nomination.
11. Timeless By Davido
Arguably one of the biggest albums of 2023, Davido’s fourth studio album ‘Timeless’ created what many have continued to categorize as a movement till date.
The phenomenal body of work has now earned Davido his first Grammy Award album nomination in the Best World Album category.
The singer has continued to break boundaries and set new records with this album and as such it is only deserving that the project receives such a recognition.
10. ‘Love Damini’ By Burna Boy
The announcement of the nominees for the 65th edition of the Grammy Awards saw Burna Boy pick up three album nominations at the prestigious awards. His 2022 project, which had many excited about its originality and creativity, ‘Love Damini, ‘ picked up a nomination in the Best World Albums category. The lead song off the project ‘Last Last’ which took the world by storm and set numerous record also bagged him his second Grammy Awards 2023 nomination in Best World Song Performance as well.
The 19 tracks album, which was released after the singer’s birthday on the 8th of July 2022, is an Afro-fusion project that featured some of the biggest names in the music industry worldwide, such as ED Sheeran, Popcaan, J Hus and so on.
9. Africa for Africa By Femi Kuti
The classic Afrobeat album rich in originality and diverse in sound, ‘Africa for Africa’ by Femi Kuti, which was released in 2010, received a Grammy award nomination in 2012 in the Best Global Music Album category of the Grammy awards. This became Femi Kuti’s second nomination in this category.
8. ‘African Giant’ By Burna Boy
Released in 2019, the African Giant by Burna Boy became the project to bag the talented singer his first Grammy Award nomination. Rich in the diversity of sound and also an impressive list of features, the ‘African Giant’ became that album that shredded more light on the diversity of the afrobeats sounds during the lockdown period.
7. ‘No Place For My Dream’ By Femi Kuti
The instrumental rich afrobeat project from Femi Kuti, released on the 25th of June 2013, received the third grammy awards nod from the recording academy in the Best Global Music Album category for the prestigious award in 2014.
6. ‘Black Times’ by Seun Kuti And Egypt 80
‘Black Times,’ by Seun Kuti and the Egypt 80 band, received a Grammy Award nomination in 2018 in the World Music Category. ‘The artist released as a CD Album black Times,’ which Strut Records produced in 2018 himself. The creative artist became the second son of the Afrobeat giant Fela Kuti to bag a nomination at the prestigious Grammy Awards.
5. ‘Odu’ by King Sunny Ade
King Sunny Ade is one of the most influential Juju musicians in Nigeria. He has been nominated twice for the Grammy Awards for two different albums. He was nominated for the Best Ethnic or Traditional Folk Recording for the album “Syncro System” in 1984 and Best World Music Album for “ODU” in 1999. Although he has won none of the categories, his impact by being one of the first artists to get nominated makes his achievement stand out.
Atlantic Records released the studio album “Odu” in 1998. It is an 11-track album that Andrew Frankel produced.
4. ‘Love Drum Talk’ by Babatunde Olatunji
Babatunde has received a Grammy nomination once with his album, “Love Drum Talk,” released on September 23, 1997, under Chesky Records. The 9 tracks classic album was Babatunde Olatunji’s last commercial release and was nominated by the Recording Academy for 1998, the Grammy award for Best World Music Album. Babatunde, however, has won once at the Grammy Awards with Mickey Hart’s album “Planet Drums” for Best World Music Album.
3. ‘Twice As Tall’ by Burna Boy
Burna Boy has bagged two nominations with his album twice for the Grammy Awards. The albums “African Giant” and “Twice as Tall” have both received the nod from the Recording Academy and bagged a nomination for the prestigious award.
The talented musician has bagged an award for the Best World Music Album with the album “Twice as Tall” in 2021. ‘Twice as Tall’ is Burna Boy’s fifth studio album, released on August 14, 2020, by Spaceship Entertainment, Bad Habit, Atlantic Records and Warner Music.
The 14-tracks album had major collaborations with acts like Chris Martin of Coldplay, the legend Youssou N’Dour, Anthony Criss, Michael Omari, and several other heavyweights in the music industry.
2. ‘Made In Lagos’ by Wizkid
Starboy, Wizkid, has two Grammy nominations with the album “Made In Lagos” for the upcoming award ceremony on April 4, 2022. Starboy received a nod for the categories of Best Global Music Album and Best Global Music Performance for his hit song “Essence” on the “Made In Lagos” album.
The 14 tracks album is Wizkid’s fourth studio album, released on October 30, 2020, by Starboy Entertainment and RCA Records. The album features major acts in the music industry, from Burna Boy, Skepta, H.E.R., Ella Mai, Tay Iwar, Projexx, Tems, Damian Marley, and Terri.
Wizkid is a Grammy award winner in the Best Video category for his international collaboration with Beyonce on “Brown Skin Girl.”
1. ‘Legacy +’ by Femi Kuti And Made Kuti
The list would not be complete without mentioning an Afrobeat legend. Femi Kuti has one of the highest Grammy nominations for an African, as the legend has received a nod from the Recording Academy six times for the prestigious Grammy Award. Although he has won none yet, the consistent nominations show the Academy’s appreciation for his art. Here are his albums that have been nominated: ‘Legacy + (2021)’ Fight To Win (2003), Day By Day (2010), Africa for Africa (2012), No Place For My Dream (2014), and others.
His latest nomination with the ‘Legacy+’ double album with his son Made Kuti comprises Femi Kuti’s Stop the Hate and Made Kuti’s For(e)ward.
‘Legacy +’ was produced by Sodi Marciszewer, who had worked with the legend Fela Kuti and was released under Partisan Records.