In the African music scene, if an artist breaks all barriers to win a Grammy award, he or she will be respected as one of the most prominent artists in the country. It’s very rare for an artist from Africa to win a Grammy award.
The standard which has been set for Grammy Awards is not easy. Several Artists from Africa have toiled, and put in much effort in their craft to even get a nomination but it has resulted in no result.
Artists such as Sarkodie, Davido, Tiwa Savage, AKA, Nasty Cee, Stonebwoy, and many others are yet to win a Grammy Award. However, some have been very blessed and have bagged one or several Grammy Awards as they put their country on the map.
List Of African Artists Who Have Won Grammy Awards:
– Ladysmith Black Mambazo (5x Grammy Awards Winner):
The Group Ladysmith Black Mambazo is a South African male choral group that usually sings in the local vocal styles of isicathamiya and mbube. The Choral Group have bagged several awards, including 5 Grammy Awards, dedicating their 5th Grammy to the late President Nelson Mandela.
– Angélique Kidjo ( 5x Grammy Awards Winner):
Angélique Kidjo is a highly respected Beninese-French singer-songwriter, actress, and activist well-known for her diverse musical impacts and creative music videos. Angélique has bagged 5 Grammy Awards. She is the individual from Africa with the most Grammy Awards.
– Ali Farka ( 2x Grammy Awards Winner):
Ali who died on the 6th of March 2006 was known as a Malian musician and multi-instrumentalist, and the continent’s most internationally renowned musician. He bagged two Grammy Awards before his demise.
Ali Farka featured with Ry Cooder in the year 1994, resulting in the album, Talking Timbuktu, which got him a Grammy Award. Fast forward, to 2015, a feature with Toumani Diabaté got him a second Grammy award.
– Soweto Gospel Choir (3x Grammy Awards Winner):
The Soweto Gospel Choir is known as a South African gospel group.
Their albums titled “Blessed”, “African Spirit”, and “Freedom” won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional World Music Album in the years 2006, 2007, and 2018, respectively.
-Youssou N’Dour (1x Grammy Award Winner):
Youssou N’Dour is a veteran Senegalese singer, songwriter, composer, actor, and businessman who doubles as a politician.
In the year 2005, Youssou bagged won Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album.
Wouter Kellerman (2x Grammy Award Winner):
Wouter Kellerman is known as GRAMMY-winning South African flutist, producer, and composer who has bagged eight South African Music Awards.
He bagged his second GRAMMY® win in the year 2023 for his song titled “Bayethe” in collaboration with South African artists Nomcebo Zikode and Zakes Bantwini in the Best Global Music Performance category.
– Tinariwen (1x Grammy Award Winner):
Tinariwen is known as a collective of Tuareg musicians who hails from the Sahara Desert region of northern Mali.
Tinariwen has been nominated for Grammy Awards 3 times, and in the year 2021, Tassili won the award for Best World Music Album.
– Burna Boy (1x Grammy Award Winner):
Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu known by the stage name Burna Boy, is a Nigerian Afro Beats singer, songwriter, and record producer.
Burna Boy released his fifth studio album, Twice as Tall, in August 2020. It won Best World Music Album at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards.
– Wizkid (1x Grammy Award Winner):
Ayodeji Ibrahim Balogun is known by the stage name Wizkid. He is a Nigerian singer who doubles as a songwriter.
Wizkid’s collaboration with Beyoncé’s “Brown Skin Girl” led to his first-ever Grammy Award.
Tems (1x Grammy Award Winner):
Temilade Openiyi known by the stage name Tems, is a Nigerian singer who doubles as a songwriter.
Tems rose to fame after being featured on Wizkid’s 2020 single titled “Essence”, which peaked at #9 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart after the release of the remix with Justin Bieber. The song earned Tems her first Grammy Award nomination.
Tems bagged her first Grammy Award for Best Melodic Rap Performance during the 65th Grammy Awards event.