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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!

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Still from NPR's Tiny Desk Concert

Watch Nigerian-American Rapper Tobe Nwigwe's Tiny Desk Concert

Joined by his wife and seven-week old daughter, the Houston-based rapper brings his Southern sounds to NPR's Tiny Desk.

Houston-raised, Nigerian-American rapper Tobe Nwigwe is the latest artist to grace NPR's TIny Desk Concert Series.

The artist performed a 5-song medley, backed by a full band and four talented backup singers. The artist was also joined at the desk by his wife Fats Nwigwe and their seven-week old daughter.

READ: Tobe Nwigwe Is the Southern Rapper Making "Purpose Popular."

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Here Are All the Samples In Burna Boy's 'African Giant'

This video breaks down all the African Giant samples & interpolations, including songs from Fela Kuti, Magic System, Naughty By Nature, D'banj and more.

Since it dropped, Burna Boy's highly-anticipated album African Giant has been making waves and getting played on constant rotation all over the place.

The 19-track album, which includes features from Angelique Kidjo, Damian Marley, Future, M.anifest, Jorja Smith, Jeremih and more, sees the buzzing Nigerian star delivering several addictive shades of his signature afro-fusion sound as he blends in influences from afrobeat, dancehall, hip-hop, RnB and more.

Listeners have also been spotting some of the many samples and interpolations used across African Giant and now, Sample Chief, a platform for African music knowledge, has put them all together in video form.

Read: Sample Chief Selects 5 of Their Favorite Samples

The samples and interpolations across African Giant include the use of Fela's "Sorrow, Tears & Blood" and Angelique Kidjo's "We WE" (in "Anybody"), Naughty By Nature's "Jamboree" (in "Collatelral Damage"), Magic System's "1er Gaou" ("On The Low"), plus many more from the likes of Stereoman, Ududo Nnobi, Blak Ryno, and D'banj.

Check them all out below courtesy of Sample Chief.

Keep up with Sample Chief by following them on Twitter and Instagram.

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Music

Meet Ami Faku, the Rising South African ‘Modern Afro Soul’ Artist Who Is Fast Becoming a Household Name

We interview the budding singer ahead of the release of her debut album.

Ami Faku is one of South Africa's fastest rising stars. Her music, which she calls "modern Afro soul," blends soul with modern pop and traditional Afro soul sensibilities. Be it on a ballad or over a house beat, the adaptable Eastern Cape-born artist maintains all her traits and soul.

In the last year, it has been near impossible to avoid Ami Faku; her singles— "Love Drunk," "Ubuhle Bakho," "Ndikhethe Wena"—have been a permanent fixture on the country's radio charts and playlists. "Into Ingawe," a single in which she's featured by Sun-El Musician is one of the most played songs on SA radio at the moment, and reached a million streams within three weeks of its release.

Ami Faku says her lyrics are honest. "My music is based on touching you in a certain way," she says, adding, "I don't have a wall, that's my brand."

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Arts + Culture
Photo by Stephen Tayo.

First Look: Peter Johnson of P96 Reveals His Custom Air Max 200s Co-Created with Nike

The Nigerian-born entrepreneur was one of 28 creators to design a sneaker for Nike's NYC by You project.

Peter Johnson, the mind behind the streetwear and lifestyle brand Project 96 (P96), was one of 28 creators to design a sneaker inspired by their story for Nike's NYC by You project.

"I was offered the opportunity to create my own version of the new Nike Air Max 200s," he says.

Johnson, 22, is a Lagos-born entrepreneur based in Queens, NY. Through his work with P96 and FulfillYourProject, Johnson consistently draws inspiration from his culture and his passion to uplift humanity. His design, entitled Balanced Diet, is inspired by his awareness of authenticity, as well as how he approaches his dual identity of being Nigerian and American.

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