Afrobeat since birth has been evolving from different generations, we’ll be exploring the three (3) generation of the Afrobeat movement.
Afrobeat generations is a group or set of afrobeat musical genre with a shared common characteristic, lets span through the highlight of the three Generations of afrobeat movement.
The characteristics thereof are based on Statistics (career records, achievements and impacts).
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The three (3) notable generations of afrobeat are The Fela’s, The D’banj/2Baba/Psquare’s and The Wizkid/Davido/Burna Boy’s generations.
Each of the generations plays important role in the growth and globalization of the afrobeat movement, from the pioneer to the record-breaking new generations.
The Fela’s (1960s-1990s)
Afrobeat was originated in Ghana in the early 1920s Before Nigeria joined the wave in the late 1960s, pioneered by Fela Kuti who explored different fashionable music at the time, he was at the forefront of the genre, popularizing the style both within and outside Nigeria.
This generation is the birth of the movement, where it all started from ideas, talent, hard work and destiny.
Fela Kuti recorded about 29 albums from 1969 to the 90s with sold-out concerts in the US, UK, and other parts of the world.
In the early 90s to Mid 90s Reggae music Infiltrated the Nigeria music scene, the genre which is associated with Jamaicans was acquired by the likes of Majek Fashek, transforming into Ragga/dancehall music, becoming a force in places like Ajegunle in Lagos, moulding the sounds as delivered by the likes of Daddy Showkey, Nico Gravity, Daddy Fresh, African China and others.
Afrobeat was pushed by Femi Kuti, Seun Kuti in the 90s, a bit of juju music led by I.K Dairo and J.O Araba even though it has been in existence pre-independence
In the late 90s to early 2000s Kennis Music created a wave that falls under afrobeat, it includes, R&B, Hip-hop, and Pop music, artistes in this era are Styl Plus, OJB Jezreel, 2 shots, Eedris Abdulkareem, Jazzman Olofin, Paul Play, etc.
This generation started in the 2000s-2010s, it comprises other afrobeat artistes which include, 9ice, Faze, Black Faze, Banky W, Timaya, and others.
D’banj, 2Baba and P-Square were the key players of the era based on statistics (career records, achievements and impacts).
2Baba released an “International Edition” of his third studio album ‘The Unstoppable International’ making him the first Nigerian artist to have a proper international rated and priced album.
Dbanj was the first afrobeat artiste to create a relative connection to an International mainstream act in 2011, after signing a contract deal as an artist to ‘Good Music record label‘ founded by Kanye West.
P-Square collaborated with T.I, and Rick Ross In 2012 and in 2013 they bag their first international nomination at Soul Train Music Awards for Best International Performance.
The Wizkid/Davido/Burna Boy’s
This generation started in the 2010s to Present, it consists of other afrobeat artistes which include, Tekno, Tiwa Savage, Runtown, Yemi Alade, Kizz Daniel, Mr Eazi, Olamide, Phyno and others
Wizkid, Davido and Burna Boy were the key players of the era based on statistics (career records, achievements and impacts)
Drake was the first mainstream artiste who joined the afrobeat wave, jumping on Wizkid‘s Ojuelegba song and from then birthed his hit single ‘One Dance‘ featuring Wizkid and a British singer Kyla, the first song introducing afrobeat to wider new generations around the world, as it is a combination of dancehall, afro beats, and Pop.
Davido signed a record deal with Sony’s RCA Records in 2016, becoming the first Nigerian New generational afrobeat artiste to officially signed to an international label.
Davido released a single titled ‘Fall’ on June 2, 2017, it became the longest-charting Nigeria pop song in US Billboard Hot R&B Songs history.
in 2019 and 2020, Burna Boy’s studio albums were nominated in the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards and 63rd Annual Grammy Awards (with African Giant & Twice as Tall) respectively, making him the first Nigerian to be nominated in two consecutive years at the Grammys.