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Trevor Noah, 'Black Panther' and More Are Honored at the Prestigious 50th NAACP Image Awards

"The power of this moment to us really feels like the power of Pan-Africanism," Danai Gurira says at the ceremony.

The NAACP Image Awards is one of the few premiere cultural moments that celebrates to accomplishments of people of color in television, music, literature, film and social justice. In its 50th year, the awards ceremony went down this past weekend at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles, honoring notables who won awards based on public audience votes.

This year's nominees was only a peek into how the African diaspora has continued to build, connect and be recognized for their efforts in telling more stories that reflect our diversity as a global black community.

"The power of this moment to us really feels like the power of Pan-Africanism," Danai Gurira says, while joining the Black Panther cast stage as they swept the awards ceremony that evening. "The beauty of this project is that we as a diaspora made this film successful—and we're just getting started as a diaspora—we're just getting started."

Take a look at some winners of note below.


Outstanding Soundtrack/Compilation

Black Panther: The Album | Kendrick Lamar, SZA feat. 2Chainz, ScHoolboy Q, Saudi, Khalid, Swae Lee, Vince Staples, Yugen Blakrok, SOB x RBE, Jorja Smith, Anderson.Paak, Ab Soul, Reason, Zacari, Babes Wodumo, Sjava, Travis Scott

Outstanding Writing in a Comedy Series

The Daily Show with Trevor Noah | Trevor Noah, Steve Budow, David Kibuuka, Zhubin Parang, Dan Amira, Lauren Sarver Means, Daniel Radosh, David Angelo, Devin Trey Delliquanti, Zachary DiLanzo

Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series

This Is Us - "This Big, Amazing, Beautiful Life" (ABC) | Kay Oyegun

Outstanding Writing in a Motion Picture (Film)

Black Panther | Ryan Coogler, Joe Robert Cole

Outstanding Directing in a Motion Picture (Film)

Black Panther | Ryan Coogler

READ: Ryan Coogler Talks the Making of 'Black Panther' with OkayAfrica

Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture

Black Panther | Chadwick Boseman

Outstanding Breakthrough Role in a Motion Picture

Black Panther | Letitia Wright

Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture

Black Panther | Michael B. Jordan

Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture

Black Panther | Danai Gurira

Outstanding Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture

Black Panther
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The 6 Songs You Need to Hear This Week

Featuring DJ Lag, Asa, LasGiiDi, Kaien Cruz, Imarhan and more

Every week, we highlight the top releases 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.

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Interview
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DJ Neptune Surveys the Sounds & Genres Running Africa In His New Album

Greatness 2.0 features an all-star cast of African artists and jumps from afrobeats to amapiano to asakaa, Ghana’s thrilling new take on drill.

Transitioning from a DJ to an artist is no small feat. Nigeria’s DJ Neptune has always had good ear for what the people want to hear, but in past years he's also shown his skill at assembling hitmakers to make a hit and earn a spot on any afrobeats playlist.

Neptune has been dotingly described as "Africa’s DJ Khaled" for his ability to bring the continent’s top names together in musical harmony. His 2018 debut album, Greatness: The Album, pulled from his extensive contacts and years of experience as one of Nigeria’s most influential radio personalities to create a star-studded compilation with features from Burna Boy, Davido, Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Efya, Kizz Daniel and Olamide, to name a few.

In 2020, during the pandemic, DJ Neptune endeared himself with his intimate live sessions with Neptune Isolation Radio, where he constantly entertained people during the lockdown. After more than a decade as a DJ, and also one of afrobeats’ most influential personalities and curators, he has assembled some of Africa’s hitmakers for his sophomore album, Greatness 2.0, which he describes as “a playlist with Africa’s favorite artists.”

Artists on the truly pan-African project include Nigeria’s Mr Eazi, Rema, Patoranking, Yemi Alade, Stonebwoy, Joeboy, Omah Lay, Simi, Adekunle Gold, Laycon, Ladipoe, Blaqbonez, Cheque, Peruzzi, Bella Shmurda and Phyno, Ghana’s Stonebwoy and Kofi Jamar, Harmonize and Anjella from Tanzania, South Africa’s Focalistic; and UK rapper One Acen. Collaborating with Neptune on production are Magic Sticks, Dëra and MOG, among other afrobeats hitmakers.

Greatness 2.0 is a survey of the sounds and genres currently running Africa —from afrobeats to amapiano and asakaa, Ghana’s thrilling new take on drill.

In this interview, we speak with DJ Neptune about DJ culture in Nigeria, working with some of Africa's biggest superstars, and his new album.

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Photo by Joseph Okpako/WireImage

Watch Wizkid's Historic Performance at London's O2 Arena

The Nigerian superstar made history by being the first African artist to sell out three shows in a row during his Made In Lagos tour.

Nigerian singer and songwriter Wizkid's fourth studio album Made In Lagos has not left our sight (or eardrums) since its release in October 2020. Now, the album filled with record-breaking hits has gone on to bag the king of afrobeats another honor: Wizkid became the first African artist to successfully sell out London's infamous O2 Arena this year, boasting three consecutive sold-out shows this week.

High off of the global success and obsession with hit single "Essence," featuring Nigerian sweetheart Tems, Wizkid's European leg of his Made In Lagos tour sold out in 12 minutes (very Beyoncé of him) as fans geared up to hear their favorite afrobeats hits. The show itself was jam-packed with fireworks, high-energy performances, and guest appearances from some of our favorite Wizkid features.

In the line-up, we saw fellow Nigerian hitmaker Burna Boy show up on stage to perform a passionate rendition of their collab "Ginger," while a bright and sunny Tems lent her talent and time to perform their hit. British pop cutie Ella Mai turned out to perform "Pieces of Me" which features on Made In Lagos, while UK favorite Skepta made Wizkid feel at home, as the two stars pumped the crowd.

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Mayorkun Is Back In Office

We speak with Mayorkun about his sophomore album, Back In Office, and why he had to step away from the scene for a while.