Poverty, corruption, wars, and social vices are most times, the topics of concentration when the media in first-world countries report about Africa, but in reality, that isn’t always the case. In fact, there’s so much more.
You would agree that the most developed countries/continents in today’s world have gone through several challenges that morphed them into what they’ve become. Africa is currently going through the aforementioned phase but has so much to give still.
Africa has so much to offer, just as it’s been manifested in various industries, especially the creative industry. African content creators based in Africa and the diaspora have continued to show Africa to the world and the world to Africa through their creative content; thanks to social media.
What they have in common is the positive attention they’ve managed to attract, via art, music, fashion, and entertainment. They’re each part of the new movement, which is rebranding Africa. It’s been going on over the years but 2022 seems somewhat special.
Milestones reached by African creatives in 2022
Khaby Lame became TikTok’s most followed user with over 153 million followers: The 22-year-old content creator who joined Tiktok back in 2020 during the pandemic is now the most followed user on the platform. In a space of two years, the Senegalese-Italian Tiktoker has become famous for calling out meaningless life hacks on social media.
Khaby’s fame has been accompanied by great fortune and 2022, marking his biggest year yet in this regard. In an interview with Fortune, he revealed he makes up to $750,000 per clip on Tiktok. In January 2022, Khaby published his first comic ‘Super Easy’ which dwells on the topics of his abilities, passions, and history. He was also listed on TIME100 Next 2022 List, and many others.
Burna Boy sold out the Madison Square Garden for the first time ever: For the first time in history, a music artiste from Africa (particularly Nigeria) had a sold-out concert at the prestigious 20K capacity Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Although South African comedian, Trevoh Noah was the first African to sell out the venue, Burna became the first to do it in the music industry. Dubbed One Night In Space, the concert which took place on the 8th of April was met with rave reviews from fans and attendees.
Elsa Majimbo makes Forbes 30 Under 30 Young Leaders’ list: Elsa Majimbo has been hitting the headlines making amazing moves globally. Her growth has occurred drastically over the years and 2022 was a major part of it. As Forbes announced their annual 30 Under 30 List, she was featured on the Young Leaders’ category alongside other young and thriving individuals like Justin Bieber’s wife, Hailey Bieber.
Wizkid sold out the Madison Square Garden for the first time: On November 16, Wizkid joined Burna Boy as the only two African artists to sell out the 20K capacity Madison Square Garden in New York City. The Essence crooner was joined by his right-hand man, DJ Tunez amongst other entertainers on his historic night. Many American celebrities were in attendance as well, to witness African excellence; straight outta the motherland.
Tems earned her first-ever Golden Globe nomination: From a career perspective, Tems is having a time of her life in 2022. In addition to her multiple exploits like awards and nominations from the BET, AMAS, BBMAs, Grammys, and more, Tems has scored her first-ever nomination for the highly prestigious Golden Globe Awards.
Thanks for her songwriting contribution to the lead single off the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever soundtrack album ‘Lift Me Up‘ which doubles as Rihanna’s comeback single. Tems was nominated alongside Rihanna, Ryan Coogler, and Ludwig Göransson for Best Original Song.
An African artist (Tems) topped the Billboard Hot 100; thanks to Future and Drake: 2022 marked one of the few times an African artist was involved in the hottest song in the United States when Future rolled out the hit single ‘Wait For U‘ featuring Drake and Tems, housed under his 9th studio album, I Never Liked You. A week after the song was released, it topped the Billboard Hot 100 giving Tems her first No. 1 hit.
2022, a remarkable year for African creatives
Billboard Hot 100: #1(new) WAIT FOR U, @1future Feat. @Drake and @temsbaby.— chart data (@chartdata) May 9, 2022
2022 is the year African giants like Burna Boy and Wizkid made history by having their names engraved alongside entertainers like Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, JAY-Z, Justin Bieber, and more as artists who sold out the prestigious Madison Square Garden in New York City.
In 2022, the entertainment industry worldwide is projected to reach $29.35 billion, higher than the previous year. This year alone, content creators are estimated to earn up to $10,000,000.
This year has offered so much to people in the creative space across various industries like music, movie, photography, videography, social media, etc. Hopefully, as we wrap up the year, 2023 will be a better year for African creatives.