The 2022 Headies Awards ceremony, which was held at the Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta, Georgia, United States, has received mixed reviews.
The 15th edition’s organizer held the show outside of Nigeria, in contrast to prior years. Anthony Andersen, an American performer, and Osas Ighodaro, a Nigerian actress, served as the event’s host.
The event this year, titled “Join the Movement,” honoured outstanding accomplishments in the Nigerian music industry, but there was widespread disapproval of the country’s hosting.
Burnaboy, a Grammy-winning singer, Wizkid, and Tems were the top Headies winners, and BNXN FKA Buju won the Next Rated category, winning a Bentley.
Some Nigerians, who objected to the award being hosted in the US, claimed Anthony Andersen, the American host, was unapproachable.
Others who didn’t agree that Andersen was the best option questioned why other Nigerian hosts, like Bovi or Basket mouth, weren’t given the chance to host the prestigious award.
These are a few of the responses:
We have a fantastic and entertaining host like Bovi, and you’re letting this dry brother host with Osas?,” wrote @ AsiwajuLerry on Twitter. Headies, God will judge you.
@itzbasito, This guy couldn’t have done a better job than Walahi, Bovi, or Basketmouth. He’s not bad, but he’s having trouble connecting with the audience.
@ilevs, It’s comparable to telling US citizens that Bovi is telling Nigerian jokes; while they might not laugh, it doesn’t mean that he isn’t funny. Every comedian is aware of what will make their audience laugh, and Anthony is currently experiencing that.
@DanielRegh, “Headies’ nominees shouldn’t go to the event; anyone with common sense will decline the honour even if they win because doing so is dishonourable. Imagine a different continent hosting one of the biggest music awards in Africa. Because of this, foreigners consistently underestimate us.
@abelpter, The 2022 Headies awards would be hosted by Anthony Anderson and Osas Ighodaro. Sincerely, I’m still baffled as to why the Headies is being held in the US. No other African country would take such a step. Nigerians have an insane obsession with outside validation.
@Felix Onyemaech, “Headies brought the biggest music awards show in Nigeria to Yankee. One of the least wise decisions I’ve ever seen. Burna Boy claims that is the reason they don’t rate us.
Ayo Animashaun, the founder of the Headies, explained to Billboard why the award was given to the US: “Over the years, the Afrobeats artists have grown and evolved. They are no longer the top local competitors. They sell out music venues all over the world, including State Farm Arena in [Atlanta] and Madison Square Garden. Afrobeats now encompasses more than just our own music.
“We need to take centre stage because there are so many Afrobeats artists that if you do not provide opportunities like this, no one will see. There are so many of them right now that so few people are aware of, and they are all so talented.
However, one of the organizers who requested anonymity bemoaned that the majority of attendees to the show were dissatisfied.
Recall that Wizkid, Burna Boy, and several others did not attend the event.
According to the source, some artists were unable to attend in person due to either visa complications or other commitments.
He claimed that if the event were held in Nigeria, artists with competing commitments would typically make time to attend.
Some people will attend two events on the same day, but they were unable to do so for the US event because they had other obligations. This made the event frustrating,” he said.
He continued by saying that many artists found it challenging to attend the event due to logistical challenges because it is difficult to spend so much money on a US trip during an increase in aviation fuel prices.
“You are aware of how expensive international travel has become. Many people who should have attended were unable to do so.
In response to the outcry, however, Moji Danisa, a well-known entertainment analyst and publisher of Paparazzi, told the Daily Post that: “The Headies, which were held in the USA, is not a bad idea. Nigerian music is played almost everywhere in the world, including in nightclubs.
There are many Nigerians in the US as well as those who live in the diaspora who want to see the headies. Sales of music are made, and the world is looking for different beats and they have embraced Nigeria, look at Burnaboy, Davido, Wizkid, and Kizz Daniel, they are all doing well. It is not out of place to take it out of Nigeria. It could be taken to Germany, Uk. It is exposing our stars and music and exporting our culture, traditions and dance. I think I will like to congratulate the organizers for that initiative.”
Myke Pam, a musician and partner of Lakreem Entertainment Inc. as well as a friend of Eedris Abdulkareem, praised the organizers for their initiative.
He claims that the exposure will help the Nigerian music industry and present opportunities for partnerships and increased sales.
“The Headies did something quite commendable,” he told DAILY POST. The world’s airwaves are being taken over by Nigeria’s local music industry. That is evident from the acclaim, the accolades, and the enormous impact our music is having on the world.
“HEADIES being held in the US come with a hefty premium. Afro beats as a musical style is a global brand that should be enjoyed, consumed, and loved by all. The US is still the leader in entertainment, so it is significant to have a successful event there and receive thorough media coverage. I must applaud the Lagos government for contributing to the realization of that dream; it marks the start of a bigger picture. It resembles a smaller version of a larger billboard. It is fantastic.
“I’m confident that many people will gain from this exposure and have chances for partnerships and new business opportunities. Since some aspects of the administration appear to be ineffective, that is good for the Nigerian economy. If entertainment is going to feed us and give us some hope for a better tomorrow, it is worth celebrating.