One night in June 2015, an upset Damini Ogulu picked up his phone, opened Twitter and let the world know he was hurt by his MTV Africa Music Awards snub.
“Really bummed @MTVbaseAfrica didn’t nominate me… I never get what I deserve but damn this is quite deep”, the artiste known as Burna Boy wrote.
Many similar controversial incidents have since ensued, both on personal and business levels, yet the harbinger of Afro-fusion marches through it all — like a soldier on a mission to raise an army.
“Afro-fusion is basically mixing all types of music with Afrobeats as the foundation. Whether it’s mixing R&B, dancehall, hip-hop with Afrobeats, that makes one sound so that is Afro fusion”, the artiste told Voice Online in an interview prior to his ‘Homecoming’ concert in London.
Burna Boy said his sound became fully formed upon his return to Nigeria over six years ago.
The return, which saw him experiment with different sounds and discovered Afro-fusion, was not without controversy.
Although he was rumoured to have been deported, and in some quarters, said to have jumped bail, Burna Boy hardly likes to address this particular elephant in the room.
The one time he would, it was far from in-depth while he also conveniently left room for multiple interpretations.
“I came back by myself. In the UK, nobody deported me. I didn’t try to go back again. I was booked to go back again for a show and everything, and I didn’t get the visa. The reasons why I didn’t get the visa was because I left when I wasn’t supposed to leave”, he had said.
He can be controversial, cocky, reclusive and sometimes aloof but Burna Boy on October 1 — Nigeria’s Independence Day — gave the performance of his life in London, United Kingdom.
The creator of Afro-fusion prides himself as being in a different lane from his counterparts in the Nigerian music industry.
He believes his sound is unique and the crowd reaction at the ‘Homecoming’ concert may seem to him, as an indication — and some form of justification at choosing to stick to his own genre.
During the concert held at the Eventim Apollo concert (also known as Hammersmith Apollo), Burna Boy gave hints of his troubles with the law in a short drama before his stage entry.
Clad in an orange-coloured prison uniform, Burna Boy burst out from a ‘police’ marked van.
He got the crowd riled up and in sync with him from that moment and throughout most parts of the show.
Burna Boy literally held in his grasp, the attention of the thousand fold audience in the 5000+ capacity arena.
The effect of his performance was perhaps, too good to be selfish with, that fans and concert attendees flocked to social media to spread the news — that Burna Boy is a force with a following.
Take a look for yourselves.
— Yørubamidele🇳🇬™ (@PrinceOfOxford) October 2, 2016
— Soignè-Joy Star (@MsStarKandy) October 2, 2016
— Kaz (@kjs_ott) October 2, 2016
— Laurette 🇦🇴🇨🇩 (@iamLaurieD) October 2, 2016
— I Go By J (@JayWrighter) October 2, 2016
— Fluffy ting✨ (@TochiLeona_) October 2, 2016
— ajijia (@ajijiamassah) October 2, 2016
— Esther ✨ (@amazesther) October 2, 2016
— Abigail (@GoOnAbi) October 2, 2016
— omoge👸🏾. (@ChristianaAkz) October 2, 2016
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