BET Hip-Hop Awards 2022: Burna Boy, Tems & More Bag Nominations

Black Sherif & Nadia Nakia also earn nominations

Last year, the BET Hip-Hop Awards became one of the first major events in the American music industry to take place during the full swing of the COVID-19 global pandemic. The last iteration was a groundbreaking display of what award shows, public performances and mass gathering would look like in a pandemic and this year, the award show is back in full swing.

Announced yesterday, the nominations for the 2022 BET Hip Hop Awards have been released. This year, among the nominees for the highly anticipated show are African artists including Tems and Burna Boy from Nigeria, Black Sherif from Ghana, South Africa’s Blxckie and Zimbabwean Nadia Nakai.

Held annually, the BET Hip Hop Awards celebrate Hip-Hop artists, producers and video directors around the world with previous winners going to some of the best and brightest stars in the game including Jay-Z, Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West and Cardi B. This year, the 17th installment will be hosted by American rapper Fat Joe, which holds at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta, US on October 4. Representing Africa this year is a fine selection of artists and our confidence for a continental win across the main and international categories is definitely not misplaced, but if you’re in doubt, below is a breakdown of each artists’ campaign to prove just how sure we are of this bet.


Last year, Tems emerged as one of the crowned jewels of Afropop with her steady string of accolades and collaborations. This year, she’s only doubled down on solidifying herself as a considerable talent. By venture of her collaboration with Drake on Future’s “WAIT FOR U,” Tems scores three nominations outside the usual International categories, this time bagging nominations for Best Hip Hop Video, Best Collaboration and Song of the Year.

Black Sherif

Few newcomers have enjoyed the success that Black Sherif has today. Released in May last year, it’s been but seven months since his awe-inspiring single, “First Sermon” had the country shaking. Followed by a “Second Sermon” in July, which hit almost 8 million views on YouTube alone, Sherif’s back to back successes have proven indubitably that this isn’t just another viral moment. Three months ago, he then hit back with the viral “Kwaku The Traveller,” which has bolstered his career beyond the shores of Ghana. With this BET nomination, 2021 looks to have even more W’s lined up for Black Sherif, let’s hope and vote a win in this category is amongst these.

Burna Boy

The most surprising nomination for the African cohort is Burna Boy, who is considered in the Video Director of the Year category for his hit song “Last Last.” First released in May before its placement on ‘Love, Damini,’ Burna Boy’s sixth studio album, “Last Last” stormed its way into the playlists and hearts of music lovers around the world. Inspired by his breakup with British rapper Stefflon Don, the song introduced audiences to the honesty and vulnerability that Burna Boy shared glimpses of in ‘Love, Damini.’

With production assistance from Chopstix, Off & Out, MdS and Ruuben, Burna Boy samples American singer Toni Braxton’s 2000 single “He Wasn’t Man Enough,” infusing the track with his pain and observations about life. For the official video, which is his debut as a director, Burna Boy chooses to trust himself and, as he includes at the start of the video, “my house, my cars, my friends, my igbo, my shayo, and most importantly for you, my fans.”

The video conveys the message of seeking healing in camaraderie. In the opening scene, Burna Boy’s friends gather around him singing, “E don cast, last last, na everybody go chop breakfast.” Throughout the video, Burna Boy spills his feelings, holding his igbo and shayo, while surrounded by his friends. It is a simple video without many special effects but it is an efficient one. It does its job, which is to remind viewers that their pain isn’t only theirs to carry. The video captures that need for community.

Being nominated for the BET Hip Hop Awards in his first effort as a video director is a big win for Burna Boy. Although he isn’t the first Nigerian artist to direct a music video for their song, earning a place on the nomination list alongside Cole Bennett, Director X and Kendrick Lamar is a thumbs up to Burna Boy’s visual artistry. A great song deserves a great music video and Burna Boy delivered both.

Featured image credits/IsraelAjayi