popular
Photo by Brad Ogbonna, courtesy of Ibra Ake.

Nigerian-American Artist Ibra Ake Wins Grammy for 'This is America'

The visual artist won a "Best Music Video" Grammy for producing Childish Gambino's viral video.

We were "rooting for everybody African" last night at the 61st Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, and this year we have multiple artists to celebrate.

Aside from the Soweto Gospel Choir picking up their third Grammy for "Best World Music Album" during last night's show for their album Freedom, another win for came when Nigerian-American visual artist Ibra Ake picked up a Grammy for his work on Childish Gambino's seminal "This is America" music video, which—unsurprisingly—won "Best Music Video" at last night's show. The song also won for 'Best Rap/Sung Performance," "Record of the Year" and became the first rap song in Grammy history to win "Song of The Year."

READ: Ibra Ake Is On a Mission To Show African Creatives the Value of Ownership & Telling Honest Stories

Ake, who produced the music video, took to Twitter after his win in celebration. "I can't believe i just won a grammy," he wrote. "'Where is the catch?!' royalty forever."


We spoke with the LA-based artist last August his mission to show fellow African creatives the value of ownership and telling honest stories. "With 'This is America,' for example, It's fun to see the reaction because the distribution is so large; it's so weird to see your ideas disperse on such a large format," he told OkayAfrica about working on the now Grammy-winning project.

"But then again it's kind of crippling sometimes, because everything feels super high stakes. I think we've learned a lot. I think the whole experience has been not normal for sure. I don't want everyone to think what happened is a normal career move. It's been very affirming just to see your ideas, especially in the first time, work out because none of that is the norm. We want to make sure that we're learning constantly and that's important to us."

Major congrats to the artist!

assets.rbl.ms

The 13 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring Simi, Stonebwoy, Riky Rick, Olamide, Wizkid, La Même Gang and more.

Every week, we highlight the cream of the crop in music through our Best Music of the Week column.

Here's our round up of the best tracks and music videos that came across our desks, which you can also check out in our Songs You Need to Hear This Week playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Follow our SONGS YOU NEED TO HEAR THIS WEEK playlist on Spotify here and Apple Music here.

Check out all of OkayAfrica's new playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.

Keep reading... Show less
popular

Cyclone Kenneth Could Be the Second Damaging Storm To Hit Mozambique In Over a Month

Tanzanian authorities have also warned those living along the southern coast to move to safer ground ahead of the storm.

Just shortly after Mozambique was ravaged with the devastating Cyclone Idai in March, the country has been warned of another destructive storm that's heading their way very soon.

Keep reading... Show less
Video

Stonebwoy & Beenie Man's 'Shuga' Is a Full Dose of Energy

Ghana meets Jamaica in this impressive new collaboration.

Stonebwoy, one of Ghana's major dancehall names, links up with Jamaican legend Beenie Man for this new single, "Shuga."

"Shuga" is built on stuttering synth hits and beat work produced by Ghana's StreetBeatz. Stonebwoy and the "King of Dancehall" connect over the energetic rhythm, each delivering their own verses—add one more track to the many stellar cross-Atlantic musical collaborations that have been going on for years, in particular between West Africa and Jamaica.

"This collab is legendary," Stonebwoy wrote on his social media pages.

The single comes paired with a new music video directed by BlingBlang which follows the Ghanaian star and Beenie Man to a railroad station as they turn a train car into a dancehall party. Beenie Man even plays the conductor for a few shots.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

news.

popular.