Billboard’s Highlight of Beyoncé & Drake In Afrobeats Widespread Recognition Irks Fans

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Beyonce and Drake Afrobeats

On Tuesday March 22nd, 2022, Billboard announced the creation of a new Chart called, the US Afrobeats Chart set to go live on March 29th, 2022. The announcement of the new chart was eagerly anticipated due to the continuous success of various Afropop artists and the adoption of the genre by various artists around the World. Afro nation is said to be collaborating with Billboard to create the perfect formula for the chart.

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This announcement came in the form of an article from Billboard that attributed the widespread recognition of Afrobeats music to artists like Beyonce and Drake. Beyonce recorded an afrobeat inspired album titled, The Gift for the Lion King movie while Drake has collaborated with Wizkid on hits like “One Dance” and the remix of Wizkid’s “Ojuelegba”.

Rania Aniftos wrote in the article “Afrobeats sounds and influences have grown in the U.S. market throughout the 2010s, through artists such as Beyoncé and Drake, and now, the genre has yielded some of the biggest success stories of the young decade — including songs like Wizkid‘s “Essence” featuring Tems, CKay’s “Love Nwantiti (Ah Ah Ah)” and Fireboy DML‘s “Peru.”

The article received mixed reactions and had fans of both Drake and Beyonce, but mostly Beyonce divided, as many felt that the article should have shone a light on Afrobeat artists and their work and not focus on Beyonce and Drake. Many felt that Beyonce and Drake were over credited in a genre they only borrowed from. In a discussion celebrating the rise of Afrobeats, it did not touch on the feats that Afrobeats had achieved to put their individual countries on the Global  music map. 

Among the criticisms was the absence of key Afrobeat artists like Burna Boy, the winner of Best World Music Album at the 62nd Grammy Awards, Davido, the crooner of “Fall” which once held the record as the longest Billboard charting song by a Nigerian and the OG wave makers like Psquare, D’banj and Fuse ODG were also not credited in the article. 

It should be noted that Billboard has since done a follow-up article looking at a bit of the history of Afrobeats from the 1950s-2010.

Twitter users had a lot to say on this and you can see some reactions below

Some people felt disrespected

 

This Twitter user  believes  Drake deserves more accolades 

 This Twitter user doesn’t think Beyonce had a hand in Afro music’s progress

  These tweets show how the reactions to the article leans towards negative than positive

 

         Other fans defended Beyonce from the uproar as seen below

It’s obvious Afrobeat fans feel erased and ignored, time will tell if other media outlets learn from this conversation and portray the genre more extensively.

Now that we have filled you in, tell us your thoughts on Beyonce’s inclusion in the Afrobeats discourse in the comment section below.  How do you feel about  Beyoncé and Drake In Afrobeats Recognition?


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