There was confusion on social media after Wizkid and Tems were noticeably missing from the list containing African singers who have won Grammy Awards.


Ahead of its 66th Grammy Awards on February 4, the organisers recently shared a listicle of African musicians who have taken home golden gramophones since the 1960s.

According to 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.

Below are the 10 winners from Africa, according to the Grammys:

  1. Miriam Makeba (South Africa) — Best Folk Recording (with Harry Belafonte) – 1966
  2. Sade Adu (Nigeria/UK) — Best New Artist – 1986
  3. Ali Farka Touré (Mali) — Best World Music Album – 1994
  4. Cesária Évora (Cape Verde) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2004
  5. Youssou N’Dour (Senegal) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2005
  6. Angélique Kidjo (Benin/France) — Best Contemporary World Music Album – 2008
  7. RedOne (Morocco) — Best Dance/Electronic Album – 2010
  8. Tinariwen (Mali/Algeria/Libya) — Best World Music Album – 2012
  9. Burna Boy (Nigeria) — Best Global Music Album – 2021
  10. Black Coffee (South Africa) – Best Dance/ Electronic Album — 2022

The list has, however, stirred an unending pot of controversy on social media platforms due to the exclusion of Wizkid and Tems, the Nigerian music heavyweights.

On March 14, 2021, Wizkid won 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.

The ‘Ojuelegba’ hitmaker feat came at about the same time when Burna Boy won his first Grammy award; clinching the ‘Best Global Music Album’ category for ‘Twice As Tall‘, his 2020 project.



Last year, Tems bagged her 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.



The development raises questions regarding the parameters used by the Grammys to make the list.

However, while clarifying Wizkid and Burna Boy’s Grammy status, the award organisers wrote: “Femi Kuti, King Sunny Adé, Babatunde Olatunji, and his rival WizKid had all received GRAMMY nods before Burna Boy became the first Nigerian male artiste to grab a golden gramophone for an original work. The Afrobeats megastar earned the prize for Best World Music Album in 2021 for his album Twice as Tall.”

The statement implied that although Wizkid received nomination, he is yet to win a Grammy while Burna Boy was praised for being “first Nigerian male artiste to grab a golden gramophone for an original work”.


Meanwhile, some users have taken to X to argue that Wizkid and Tems were omitted from the list because they won the Grammys as featured artistes, while others have taunted the two singers.

“Grammy released a list of African artists who have won the Grammy Award and Wizkid is no where to be found on their list, so na Iron that boy dey flaunt since?” a user asked.

“No Wizkid,,,,, No Tems,,,, Lmao In the just listed African Grammy winners When we say those two are built on other people’s success known as Gumbody,, Dem go think say we dey hate,,lol,” another user wrote.

The 2024 Grammy Awards will be held on Sunday, February 4 at the Arena in Los Angeles.

The award organisers also introduced the ‘Best African Music Performance’ category to specifically honour African artistes.

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

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