Burna Boy: At A Point, I Had To Choose Between Greatness And Death

by Yinka Akanbi

Grammy Award-winning singer, Burna Boy, recently shared how he had to choose, at a point in his life, between greatness and death and how the decision is responsible for his recent successes on the global stage.

He said: “Following several collaborations with foreign artistes of African heritage, I just made up my mind that I wanted it all. I wanted to be the greatest. That’s when it hit me really hard that I had to do it. It was that or death.”

Burna Boy also stated that winning the Grammy broke a mental cycle of people who felt that certain things were impossible.

“I was not celebrating because of myself. It was almost as if I had broken a mental cycle of our people. Our people had been very mentally oppressed to feel like they could not do certain things, and that certain things were unreachable,” he added.

The singer also noted that he felt he had to think for a whole generation.

He said: “Every day, I realise more that things are bigger than me. I have to think for a lot of people – basically a whole generation – before I think of myself.”

The Grammy Award-winner also spoke on ‘Monsters You Made’, a popular track from his latest album, ‘Twice As Tall’.

According to him, the track, which depicts angst and frustration and serves as a potential teaching ground for those seeking to understand Nigeria as it exists today, serves as an alternative history to the miseducation of his youth.

“If you and I go to war, and you win that war, then automatically what is mine is yours. So you’re going to want to teach my children the history that will make you smell like roses and make me look like… Step one is re-education, because we’ve been miseducated. As soon as we were born, miseducation began. I think a deliberate effort should be made to re-educate us, because a very deliberate effort was made to miseducate,” he told GQ Magazine in a recent interview.

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Burna Boy won the Best Global Music Album category at the 63rd Annual Grammy Awards, becoming the first Nigerian solo-artiste to clinch the coveted gold-plated gramophone on music’s biggest night.

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