For the love of the real stars, the producers, we created #Beatsmith — a series that focuses on the connections and inspirations that led to the creation of that hit song or album.
Burna Boy’s exceptional African Giant is easily the best Nigerian album of 2019, as well as one of the best of the past decade, so it comes as no surprise that it recently nabbed a well-deserved Grammy nomination for ‘Best World Music Album’.
While Burna Boy’s talents cannot be praised enough, it’s also worth noting that this album wouldn’t be what it is without the brilliant Kel P, who produced over half the tracks. So, we decided to reach out to 2019’s defining beatsmith to ask how the game-changing album came to be.
On meeting Burna Boy:
So, around August last year, Ceeza Milli recorded Burna Boy on one of my beats. Burna Boy asked who made it, and Ceeza told him about me. The next day, I got a call from both of them to link up and that was how I met him.
On first discussing ‘African Giant’:
I never knew I was coming to make an album. I just knew I was there to record songs. We didn’t really have any serious conversation or even a moment to get to know each other beforehand. We were just working and the vibe was smooth.
On main inspiration:
My main inspiration was Burna Boy himself. His previous songs, the ones he released before I met him, influenced my work on the new songs. I was also influenced by his unique vocal texture and writing.
On the difficulty level:
It was very tasking. I was basically indoors for an entire month, grinding to make sure every song sounded different. Burna is a fast writer — he can record four complete hit songs in a single day.
On his favourite track:
My favourite track is definitely “Wetin Man Go Do”. The composition is somehow simple and dynamic all at the same time. The vocals and adlibs also blend really smoothly together.