Beyoncé-endorsed Burna Boy makes Afrobeat go international
By Chuck Arnold
August 13, 2020 | 7:55pm
Burna Boy is, well, on fire.
As you can imagine, the Nigerian artist felt like worldwide royalty when he was approached by the Queen B — um, yes, Beyoncé — to work with her on last year’s “The Lion King: The Gift” album.
Now, as people all over the planet are still streaming Bey’s “Black Is King” on repeat — and hearing Burna Boy’s smooth but funky jam “Ja Ara E” — the international sensation, born Damini Ogulu, is embracing his own ascending stardom with his new album, “Twice as Tall,” out Friday.
“It’s a time when everybody has to be the best version of themselves and the strongest version of themselves,” Burna, 29, tells The Post on the phone from London, where he has made his first trip from his Lagos, Nigeria, home base since the pandemic to launch his album.
The Grammy-nominated singer — and two-time winner of the BET Award for Best International Act — made his new LP during lockdown. His joyous single “Wonderful” is exactly what the world needs to uplift beat-down spirits right now. “But that wasn’t really the inspiration behind the song,” he said. “I’d been on tour for the past three years nonstop, so this pandemic was like a blessing and a curse, ’cause I got to spend more time with my family and myself than I have in years. So that’s where ‘Wonderful’ comes from. I recorded it in the beginning of the pandemic, when I first got home … not really knowing the full extent of how long [it would be].”