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Rocky Dawuni explains how Grammy nomination can promote Ghana globally

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According to a two-time Grammy nominee, Rocky Dawuni, a Grammy nomination or win does a whole lot of good for an artist including giving the artist commercial appeal and visibility. He added that the prestigious award comes with some optics that help artists in many ways.

He told Ameyaw TV: “I came into real terms of the optics when I was nominated the first time. I’ll go to a country, and then they will announce me as a Grammy nominee, and there’s a certain optics that is attached to the gravitas that comes with that recognition. I’ve always been an artist who had some sort of love/hate relation with awards, because I felt that music is defined by a vision, and that vision informs your mission as an artist. And I feel that that mission has to come from something that is real because I don’t see music for only the fun part. I see music as a tangible tool for inspiring people, elevating people, and empowering nations to develop among other things.”

Rocky also believes that the Grammy Awards shine a spotlight on more than just the nominated or winning artist, but in the case of African artists, their countries benefit as well. “I think when the nomination was announced, it was on every major channel, everywhere around the world. And next to my name was the flag of Ghana. So all of a sudden, our music is spreading everywhere. As musicians, we’re ambassadors of our country, we’re the curators and purveyors of the culture. That’s why I believe that when we are fully representative of our culture, it tells a better story of who we are.”

He recounted his first Grammy experience when he was nominated for Reggae Album of the year in 2016: “I remember walking on the red carpet and the media were asking of my jacket, thinking it was one of the top designers that created my jacket because everybody loved it. But it was designed by Elike Clothing, one of the Ghanaian designers who make my clothes. So I also used the opportunity to push Ghanian fashion and Ghanaian designers. I feel that we are conduits for everybody that comes to our country to come and invest, to come and see our country from our concerts.”

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He continues: “It’s an intangible aspect of our national development, the number of people who, through this exposure and through concerts will think about coming to experience Ghana, just because they experience our music is immense, but it cannot be quantified. But through that, we are able to spur economic development in so many dimensions. So this is a big thing for us. And an important thing, and it’s also a means for us to recognize the value of our art because our culture is our primary driver.”

The 64th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony will be held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on April 3, 2022. Rocky Dawuni is nominated alongside Angelique Kidjo, Wizkid, Femi Kuti & Made Kuti, and Daniel Ho & Friends.

Rocky Dawuni on his chances of winning this award said: “In life, everything is a level playing field. There are others who are coming with more resources behind them, others who are coming in with certain longevity of recognition and I respect and honour all of that. I’m very privileged to share that space. This is the year with the most African artist nomination ever. So this is a very pivotal year and already for me, it’s a victory for Africa. So I’m already living in that victory, and for me, living in that victory is also a manifestation of that victory. So it’s in God’s hands, as we say!”

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