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BET Awards: Burna Boy releases powerful message after winning Best International Act back-to-back [READ]

Burna Boy has won the 2020 Best International Act for the second consecutive year, becoming the first Nigerian artiste to win the BET Awards back to back.

The Nigerian singer floored Innoss’B (DRC), Sho Madjozi (South Africa), Dave (UK), Stormzy (UK), Ninho (France), and S.Pri Noir (France) to scoop the gong at the first-ever virtual BET Awards which held on Sunday night.

British supermodel, Naomi Campbell presented the Best International Act award to Burna Boy, who gave his acceptance speech virtually.

In his acceptance speech, the singer said: “I‘ll like to use this opportunity to say that sometime around 1835, there was a mission to turn Africa into a dominated nation.

“Now is the time to overturn that and go back to the royalty that we were, because, in order for black lives to matter, Africa must matter”

Burna Boy, is a Nigerian singer and songwriter. He rose to prominence in 2012 after releasing “Like to Party”, the lead single from his debut studio album L.I.F.E (2013).

In 2017, Burna Boy signed with Bad Habit/Atlantic Records in the United States and Warner Music Group internationally. His third studio album Outside, marked his major-label debut.

In January 2018, Burna Boy was featured on “Sunshine Riptide”, a track from Fall Out Boy’s seventh studio album MANIA (2018). He released his third studio album Outside on 26 January 2018.

Described as a mixtape, Outside consists mostly of Afrobeats, dancehall, reggae and road rap. It features guest vocals from English musicians J Hus, Lily Allen and Mabel. Outside was supported by six singles: “Rock Your Body”, “Streets of Africa”, “Koni Baje”, “Sekkle Down”, “Heaven’s Gate” and “Ye”.

Its production was handled by Leriq, Baba Stiltz, Jae 5, Juls, Chopstix, Steel Banglez, Fred Gibson, Phantom and FTSE. The album received positive critical acclaim and was ranked by Pulse Nigeria and Nigerian Entertainment Today as the best Nigerian album of 2018.

It won Album of the Year at the 2018 Nigeria Entertainment Awards. In February 2018, Outside debuted at number 3 on the Billboard Reggae Albums chart. The album’s biggest single “Ye” ended up atop most Nigerian publications year-end list as the biggest song of 2018.

On 7 October 2018, Burna Boy performed before a sold-out crowd at London’s O2 Academy Brixton. A day prior to the show, he held a pop-up event at Red by Little Farm and sold limited boxes of his Space Puffs cereal, as well as custom notepads, lighters and graphic tee-shirts.

On 9 October 2018, Burna Boy was announced as one of Spotify’s New Afro Hub Takeover Artist. The announcement coincided with him being named YouTube’s Artist on the Rise for 3 months.

In 2019, he won Best International Act at the 2019 BET Awards, and was announced as an Apple Music Up Next artist. His fourth studio album African Giant was released in July 2019; it won Album of the Year at the 2019 All Africa Music Awards and was nominated for Best World Music Album at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards.

Burna Boy’s fourth studio album African Giant was supported by six singles: “Gbona”, “On the Low”, Killin Dem”, “Dangote”, “Anybody” and “Pull Up”. He began recording the album in 2018. He told Billboard magazine the album is his most personal yet.

He first revealed plans to release the album in April 2019, and held a private listening session in Los Angeles. Photos and videos from the listening session were shared on social media. African Giant was initially announced as a 16-track album.

In order to promote the album, Burna Boy headlined the African Giant Returns tour, the second leg of his African Giant tour. Burna Boy recorded “My Money, My Baby”, a track that appeared on Queen & Slim’s soundtrack album.

Described as an “Afrobeat-tinged track”, “My Money, My Baby” contains a sample of Fela Kuti’s 1972 song “Shakara”.

In April 2020, Burna Boy performed in the One World: Together at Home special.

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Written by Mateen Badru

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