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    Davido failed to win his three nominations at 66th Grammys

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    Davido failed to win any of his three nominations at the 66th Grammys.

    Davido was hoping to win his first Grammy award after he earned nominations for Best African Music Performance, Best Global Music Performance, and Best Global Album Performance.

    However, the Nigerian megastar failed to win any of his three nominations.

    Davido lost the Best African Music category to Tyla‘s ‘Water’, Best Global Music Performance to ‘Pashto’ by Béla Fleck, Edgar Meyer & Zakir Hussain Featuring Rakesh Chaurasia, and Best Global Album to Shakti‘s ‘The Moment’.

    The aftermath of the 66th Grammy Awards has generated reactions from Nigerian music fans who were disappointed that some of their favourite artists including Davido failed to register a win.

    However, anyone who has been following the Grammys for some time, especially the Global categories may not be too surprised at the turn of events.

    Davido was facing an uphill battle in his first Grammy outing and his chances were low albeit his fans were optimistic.

    Here are three reasons Davido failed to win any of his nominations.

    Tyla had a much bigger song in the United State

    For most fans, this was the category that Davido had the strongest chance of bringing home. His single ‘Unavailable’ featuring Musa Keys was nominated in the maiden category alongside Burna Boy‘s ‘City Boy’, Asake & Olamide‘s ‘Amapiano’, Ayra Starr‘s ‘Rush’, and Tyla‘s ‘Water’.

    The award was won by Tyla’s ‘Water’ to be surprise of some fans who expected it to go to any of the Nigerian artists including Davido.

    When Davido’s ‘Unavailable’ is compared to Tyla’s ‘Water’, the latter had far more success in the United States and this certainly counted in her favour.

    ‘Water’ peaked at NO. 7 on the Billboard Hot 100 and had a remix with Travis Scott. ‘Unavailable’ failed to crack the Hot 100.

    Although both Davido and Tyla promoted the single in the United States, Tyla’s song was significantly more mainstream and she enjoyed more publicity as a result even though Davido is the much bigger star.

    Tyla’s ‘Water’ was huge in the United States and she graced the country’s biggest platforms. And with the Grammys being an American award, this greatly counted in Tyla’s favour.

    Even if Tyla hadn’t picked up the award, it would likely have been Burna Boy as predicted by different publications including Pitchfork.

    Grammy Pedigree

    When it comes to the Grammys, pedigree counts and this is why it was always going to be difficult for Davido to win on his first outing.

    In 2020, Burna Boy lost his first nomination with ‘African Giant’ to Angelique Kidjo’s ‘Celia’. Notably, Kidjo earned her first nomination for Best Short Form Music Video for ‘Agolo’ in 1995 and waited for her first win in 2008 with ‘Djin Djin’ which won Best Contemporary World Music Album.

    In 2022, Wizkid lost his first two nominations as a solo artist. His album ‘Made In Lagos’ lost the Global Album category to Angelique Kidjo‘s ‘Mother Nature’ and his hit single ‘Essence’ featuring Tems lost the Best Global Music Performance category to Pakistani folk & Jazz act Arooj Aftab’s ‘Mohabbat’ on a night she was also in contention for Best New Artist.

    It’s not an easy feat for artists to win the Grammys at their outing hence pedigree comes into play and it’s built over time with accumulated nominations and wins.

    Davido’s ‘Feel’ lost the Global Music Performance category to ‘Pashto’, which boasts of a collection of stellar talents including the 15-time Grammy winner, BlueGrass legend, and Banjo virtuoso Béla Fleck. Bluegrass maestro Edgar Meyer is a 5 time Grammy winner.

    The Grammys favour traditional folk composition

    The Recording Academy has consistently favoured music that carries significant cultural essence and rich intercontinental instrumentals in the global categories.

    In the history of the Global categories, Burna Boy is the only artist to have won with a mainstream Pop album a feat he managed in 2021 for his fifth album ‘Twice As Tall’.

    Other attempts by Burna Boy and Wizkid to win in the global categories failed as they were beaten by artists who made music that incorporated significant traditional folk elements and instrumentals.

    Davido’s ‘Timeless’ is a mainstream Afrobeats album and while it carried significant African elements in its composition, these elements are refined to fit into the mainstream pop Afrobeats sound as opposed to the traditional folk music.

    Unsurprisingly, Davido’s ‘Timeless’ lost to the Global album category to Shakti‘s ‘This Moment’ which combined Indian traditional folk instrumentals with elements of Jazz for the band’s first album in 46 years. Similarly, ‘Pasto’ which won the Best Global Music performance was a combination of instrumentals from bluegrass music legends Béla Fleck and Edgar Meyer and Indian traditional instrumentals from Zakir Hussain who is considered the greatest tabla player of all time, and Rakesh Chaurasia a celebrated Indian flautist.

    When all the factors are considered, Davido’s loss at the Grammys doesn’t come as a surprise. Painful and disappointing as it may be for fans, it’s the beginning of his Grammy journey and with consistency, his time will come.

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