Every year there are surprises attending the release of Grammy nominees.
This year one surprise hits closer home for African followers of the world's most respected music award ceremony. The song ‘One Dance’ by Drake featuring Kyla and Nigerian pop act Wizkid is missing from the list of nominees released today by the Recording Academy.
‘One Dance’ has been among the most successful songs of 2016. It is the most streamed song according to Spotify. It was also a chart topper in the US, and the UK where it became the longest number 1 song on the charts since 1991. It was expected to receive a nomination at the Grammys thereby providing Wizkid with a chance at clutching a Grammy award for his contribution.
Instead the song has been overlooked by the Grammys. Other songs by Drake are on the list of nominees including ‘Pop Style’ and ‘Hotline Bling’ in the Best Rap Performance and Best Rap/Sung Performance categories. His collaboration with Rihanna, ‘Work’, is also nominated.
Wizkid still manages to snag a nomination at the 59th Grammys courtesy of the 2016 Drake album, Views, getting a Best Album nomination. The award is given to the main artist, the featured artist(s), the producer, the engineer and/or mixer and the mastering engineer. Wizkid has credit as both producer and featured artist on Views.
Chances for a win in the category are slim, however, because rap albums are barely represented in the list of Best Album wins in Grammy history. Lauryn Hill’s Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and Outkast’s Speakerboxx/Love Below are the only albums to feature a sizable amount of rapped songs with a Grammy Best Album award.
The album Views also faces tough direct competition from Adele’s 25, Beyonce’s Lemonade, and Justin Bieber’s Purpose. Sturgill Simpson’s A Sailor's Guide To Earth completes the list. Elsewhere, South African band Ladysmith Black Mambazo is nominated in the Best World Music Album category for Walking In The Footsteps Of Our Fathers. The immensely successful band has won four Grammys. The first came in 1988; the last came in February this year.
American singer Beyonce tops the list of nominees with nine nods. See full list of nominees here.