Burna Boy made his Tiny Desk appearance this week in a black hoodie with his name emblazoned across the front . A feat no other Nigerian artiste regardless of their pedigree has been able to do.
Tiny Desk Concerts is a video series of live concerts hosted by NPR Music, hosted Bob Boilen in Washington, D.C.
“Burna has been working really hard, so please bear with us,” his mother and manager, Bose Ogulu was reported to have said.
“The band will arrive well before him. Let me know the latest time at which he can arrive.”
The Nigerian singer and songwriter is one of the biggest African artists in the world. He’s also a pioneer of Afro-fusion which incorporates sonics and influences from a myriad of genres, laid on an Afrobeat foundation. The sound has been inescapable this year. The man born Damini Ogulu has been touring the world for the majority of 2019 and has at least 10 songs in the current nightclub rotation. Beyoncé took notice and offered him a place on The Lion King soundtrack, The Lion King: The Gift.
Sandwiched between two sold-out concerts in Washington D.C., his Tiny Desk performance offers something relatively different from what we’re used to seeing at his rowdy stage shows. He’s more reflective here and restrained, allowing his songwriting to shine. In the spirit of one of his heroes, Fela Kuti, he weaves through highlights from his breakout album, African Giant, that are liable to move your body as much as your social consciousness.