11 African Artists Who Have Won Grammy Awards
19 September 2023
The Grammy Award is among the most coveted awards in the music world, not just for African artists but international ones too. These 11 African musicians have not only showcased their immense talent but have also highlighted the rich and diverse musical heritage of the African continent. Here is a list of African musicians who have won Grammy Awards,
1. Miriam Makeba (South Africa)
• Grammy Award: Makeba received the Grammy Award for Best Folk Recording in 1966 for her album "An Evening with Belafonte/Makeba." Her collaboration with American artist Harry Belafonte helped introduce South African music to a global audience.
2. Ali Farka Touré (Mali)
• Grammy Award: The late Ali Farka Touré won the Grammy Award for Best World Music Album in 1995 for his album "Talking Timbuktu," a collaboration with American guitarist Ry Cooder. This album blended Malian blues with American blues, creating a mesmerizing fusion.
3. Youssou N'Dour (Senegal)
• Grammy Award: Youssou N'Dour won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary World Music Album in 2005 for his album "Egypt." He is known for his powerful vocals and the fusion of traditional Senegalese music with various contemporary genres.
4. Angelique Kidjo (Benin)
• Grammy Awards: Angelique Kidjo has won multiple Grammy Awards. Her album "Djin Djin" earned her the Grammy for Best Contemporary World Music Album in 2008, and she won the same award for "Eve" in 2015. She received the Grammy for Best World Music Album in 2016 for "Sings."
5. Tinariwen (Mali)
• Grammy Award: The Tuareg band Tinariwen won the Grammy Award for Best World Music Album in 2012 for their album "Tassili." They are known for their unique blend of traditional Tuareg music and contemporary rock influences.
6. Ladysmith Black Mambazo (South Africa)
• Grammy Awards: The legendary South African a cappella group Ladysmith Black Mambazo has won multiple Grammy Awards. They first won in 1988 for their album "Shaka Zulu" in the Best Traditional Folk Recording category. They won again in 2009 for "Ilembe: Honoring Shaka Zulu" in the Best Traditional World Music Album category and in 2018 for "Shaka Zulu Revisited" in the Best World Music Album category.
7. Burna Boy (Nigeria)
• Grammy Award: Burna Boy made history in 2021 by winning the Grammy Award for Best Global Music Album for his critically acclaimed album "Twice as Tall." This achievement solidified his status as one of Nigeria's most prominent contemporary musicians.
8. Angélique Kidjo won the award for Best Global Music Album for her album "Mother Nature"
9. Black Coffee won the award for Best Dance/Electronic Music Album for his album "Subconsciously"
10. Zakes Bantwini, Nomcebo Zikode, and Wouter Kellerman won the award for Best Global Music Performance for their song "Bayethe".
11. Tems won a Grammy Award in 2023 for Best Melodic Rap Performance for her feature on the song "Wait for U" by Future featuring Drake.
The Grammy Awards continue to evolve, and more African musicians may have won awards in subsequent years. African music's influence on the global stage is growing, and these artists have played a vital role in showcasing the continent's rich musical traditions and contemporary innovations.