By Adeleye Adegboyega
“Thank you so much for this, thank you so much. It’s an honour… I mean, this is my first award show that I’m winning something and I just want to use this as an opportunity to speak to every single young, old, whatever, every single woman watching this, every single girl watching this at home. Where I’m from, things like this don’t happen.”
An acceptance speech of life- one that would be forever remembered as Tems taught us why “Terms & Conditions (A metaphor for discrimination)” isn’t the case in African Music any longer. Creative talents from the African region can now dream of being celebrated on the big stage for their hard work, resilience and passion.
Irrespective of gender, race or colour, Hardwork would always be appreciated and recognized. Indeed, “Black is King” and the 2022 BET Awards proved why that statement is a fact.
Temilade Openiyi made it to the big stage to accept her biggest award ever- an award to celebrate Nigeria, Africa and Afrobeats in general.
This is a huge win for African Music; having enjoyed a massive following, worldwide streams, global recognition and popularity in recent years.
It was a well-deserved honour for her hard work, amazing feats and successful stride in the past year which include the US Billboard Top- 10 chart entry and international collaborations with big names such as Justin Beiber, Drake and Future. The 27-year-old songstress is just one of the many stars writing Africa’s name in gold and placing its music on the global map. Indeed, “Crazy Things Are Happening”.
In the last few years, Nigerian Stars have been globally honoured on the big stage. From Burna Boy and Wizkid’s Grammy Award wins to 2Baba, D’banj, Ice Prince Wizkid, Burna Boy and Davido dominating the BET Best International Act Award Category. Wizkid won the award in 2012 before staging a comeback win in 2017. Davido won it in 2018 and gave a remarkable acceptance speech as he celebrated African Music, Food, and Culture whilst calling on the big American stars to explore the African Continent.
Indeed, that was just the beginning of African glory as Burna Boy would go on to win the award in 2019 and 2020.
The 2022 edition was very special for a lot of reasons- First, 3 Nigerians-British born Nigerian- Little Simz, Africa’s sensation- Fireboy DML and eventual winner- Tems were nominated for the Best International Act Category. Tems was also nominated for the Best New Artiste and Best Collaboration categories.
Another special reason was the historic and fire-cracking performance from Fireboy DML as he became the first ever African Artiste to perform on the main stage at the BET Awards.
He shouted the name of his homeland “Nigeria” as he performed Peru. That song lived its literal meaning as Afrobeats is enjoying massive success and love from all and sundry- Nigeria, America, Asia, Europe, Peru and all over the world.
The performance is also a celebration of the black culture and a leadway to future performances from the plethora of creative and amazing stars in the spectrum of African Music- Afrobeats in particular.
Not also forgetting the classic show of finesse from the Nigerian creative producer and singer “Pheelz” who “killed” the pre-show event with a phenomenal performance.
The biggest win on the night for Afrobeats was obviously the recognition of the impact and essence of African Music to the world. A collaboration between Black Stars and a White Superstar won the Best
Collaboration Award. Wizkid, Tems and Justin Beiber took home the award wading off the challenge from big names such as Dj Khaled, Doja Cat, SZA, Young Thug, Lil Baby Drake, Future, Kendric Lamar, and Nicki Minaj.
A historic win for the black culture as Wizkid and Tems became the first Nigeria/African to win a major category at the BET Awards.
The 2022 Black Entertainment Television Awards: A historic feat for Afrobeats on culture’s biggest night. A celebration of African Music, Passion and Culture. Yes, It’s Africa to the World!