It’s officially Grammy season.
In 2021, Wizkid, Tems, Made and Femi Kuti made it on the Grammy Awards nomination list. This year, with Burna Boy’s Love, Damini getting two Grammy nominations, and Tems getting two nominations for Wait For You, her collaboration with Drake and Future, it looks like Nigeria will be well represented again.
But outside of these artists who’ve already signed attendance with the Grammys before, here are 10 artists and projects we would’ve loved to hear when the nominations were announced.
Some Nights I Dream of Doors — Obongjayar
Obongjayar’s music is as raw as it gets. Whether he’s urging you to keep hustling on songs like Try and Sugar or reminding you that you deserve better on Tinko Tinko (Don’t Play Me for a Fool), Obongjayar maintains an intense level of honesty and emotion that’s hard to find these days.
There’s so much drama in this man’s voice, and even the album title is dramatic AF. What is Some Nights I Dream of Doors? But the best part is all the drama pays off beautifully when you listen to his music.
Boy Alone — Omah Lay
No one is doing this “sad boy music” thing like Omah Lay. After blowing up at the height of the pandemic in 2020, Omah Lay cemented his position as one of the most exciting Nigerian artists right now with the release of Boy Alone, his debut EP. Letting his emotions take centre stage, the album has given us hits like Soso, Woman, Bend You, and the song anyone suffering from imposter syndrome can relate to, I’m a Mess.
V — Asa
If there’s one Nigerian artist who seemed set for a Grammy win from the moment they stepped on the scene, it’s Asa. Her debut self-titled album was, and still is, a masterpiece, covering heartbreak, politics and existential thoughts. But it did nothing to prepare us for V, her fifth studio album released this year.
With V, Asa has moved her music to the dance floor. Singing about friendships, love and red wine, this album proves Asa can make any type of music, and it’ll still slap.
Catch Me If You Can — Adekunle Gold
Adekunle Gold’s rebrand from calm lover boy to in-your-face fashion icon/ DILF still makes my head spin. With 2020’s Afropop Vol.1, Adekunle introduced a fun, more pop-focused side of his music and personality. Bringing that energy into his 2022 album, Catch Me If You Can, Adekunle pulls out all the stops, featuring Davido, Lucky Daye and Ty Dolla $ign. Maybe I’m high, but it looks like AG Baby is here to stay.
Mr Money With the Vibe — Asake
Although the album suffers from sounding repetitive, Asake manages to make each song as infectious as the one before it. While it looks like Asake is slowing things down, it doesn’t mean Mr Money With the Vibe doesn’t deserve Grammy love.
RECOMMENDED: Asake is the Fashion Icon the World Needs Right Now
19 & Dangerous (Deluxe) — Ayra Starr
Ayra Starr is that girl, and she knows it. Despite taking 2021 by storm with her self-titled EP, her smash hit, Bloody Samaritan, and her debut album, 19 & Dangerous, Ayra has shown no signs of slowing down. As a matter of fact, the hits dey rush.
Releasing the deluxe version of 19 & Dangerous with new songs and remixes, Ayra has thrown her hat into the ring. While her album may not be eligible, songs like Rush and the Bloody Samaritan remix with Kelly Rowland still make the cut.
Palmwine Music 3 — Show Dem Camp
Five years after tapping into their Feel Alright palm wine vibe to drop the first installation of what we’ve come to know as the Palmwine Music series, Show Dem Camp has closed out this chapter of their career with Palmwine Music 3.
Bringing in past collaborators like BOJ, Moelogo, Tems and Ladipoe, while creating space for new acts like Oxlade, Tay Iwar and Victony, Show Dem Camp successfully delivered one of the best albums of the year. It’s sweet, sour and relaxing, just like the drink it’s named after.
Rave & Roses — Rema
It’s Rema’s world right now, and the rest of us are just paying rent and agency fees. Three years after capturing our attention with the party starter, Dumebi, Rema officially kicked off 2022 with his debut album, Rave and Roses. While songs like Dirty, Time N Affection and Calm Down remind us Rema is a budding sex icon, his music really hits when he sheds off that gragra to give us songs like Addicted, Divine and Are You There?
Sad Romance — CKay
Capitalising on the international exposure he got after Love Nwantiti became TikTok’s official anthem in 2021, CKay dropped his debut album in 2022, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s interesting CKay named it Sad Romance when almost every song on it sounds like music that’ll get you pregnant.
Swimming in sensual R&B production and CKay’s bedroom voice, Sad Romance was a major standout of the year and deserves some recognition.