Author: Joyce

Afrobeats is a New Genre

Afrobeats is a New Genre

The Grammys are considering adding an Afrobeats category in the first year of the show’s broadcast, a potential move that would open the door to further inclusion of African performers.

Afrobeats began expanding into the major television networks in the 1990s, and was initially championed by BET, which used it as a way to expand the exposure of African singers and bands into the American mainstream. The category proved so popular with the network that the Grammy organization decided to include it in the 1995 awards show, where it debuted, eventually going on to win 13 categories including Best New Artist. But according to Forbes, the Grammys have been slow to embrace Afrobeats, instead only promoting it as a “cute idea” when introducing the category in 1994.

In an interview with Billboard Magazine, Afrobeats creator and executive producer Quincy Jones said that “as far as inclusion in the nominations, we didn’t discuss it in any ways,” and reiterated that, “When [the Grammys] came [out in 1995], they decided to just put it into the new category and let the fans vote for it.”

He also added that, “When we first heard of the Afrobeats, we were like, ‘Oh shit, they actually want us to call them a new genre – what is that exactly?’”

However, Billboard cited a statement from Afrobeats founder and CEO Mura Masa of the Nigerian-American group Afrotainment Group:

“There is a lot of talk about the Grammys and Afribesters being the next musical genre. We don’t want that to happen…We are proud of every aspect of our music. We are as diverse as any other artist in music, which is why we chose the name ‘African Fusion’.”

If the Grammys choose to add Afrobeats as a new category, then the first-year eligibility would be set at the time of the show’s premiere in 1994, meaning that it would not be eligible to win until at

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