In Summary

  • This year's Trace Awards will be the  first-ever to be held in Africa.
  • The live event celebrating creativity, talent and influence of African and Afro-inspired music and artists will be held at BK Arena in Kigali on October 21, 2023.

Trace has announced the names of the nominees for the first-ever Trace Awards scheduled to be held in Africa.

The live event by Trace celebrating the creativity, talent and influence of African and Afro-inspired music and artists globally is slated for the BK Arena in Kigali on October 21, 2023.

Trace Awards & Festival has been sponsored by Visit Rwanda and Martell.

“African and African diaspora artists are extraordinarily creative and dynamic. They represent a massive cultural force and deserve more global recognition and celebration,” said Trace Chairman & Co-Founder Olivier Laouchez.

The award celebrates achievements by more than 150 performers, producers, DJs, writers, composers, directors, established artists and rising stars, and their management and labels.

“We congratulate all the nominees, most of whom will attend and perform in Kigali on October 21. It will be an unmissable experience for lovers of African and Afro-inspired music,” added Laouchez.

The Trace Awards event will be graced by the best artists from Africa across varied genres including Afrobeat, Dancehall, Hip Hop, Afro-pop, Mbalax, Amapiano, Zouk, Kizomba, Genge, Coupé Décalé, Bongo Flava, Soukous, Gospel, Rap, Rai, Kompa, R&B, and Rhumba.

Top-selling artistes of various backgrounds will compete in 22 award categories from more than 30 countries in Africa, South America, the Caribbean, the Indian Ocean and Europe.

Those who win in each category will take home one or more Trace Awards Trophies, which are unique pieces of art designed by hailed Congolese sculptor and designer, Dora Prevost.

Here are the nominees:

Best Male

Asake (Nigeria)

Burna Boy (Nigeria)

Davido (Nigeria)

Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania)

Didi B (Ivory Coast)

K.O (South Africa)

Rema (Nigeria)

Best Female

Ayra Starr (Nigeria)

Josey (Ivory Coast)

Nadia Mukami (Kenya)

Soraia Ramos (Cape Verde)

Tiwa Savage (Nigeria)

Viviane Chidid (Senegal)

Song of the Year

“BKBN” - Soraia Ramos (Cape Verde)

“People” - Libianca (Cameroon)

“Suavemente” - Soolking (France)

“Encre” - Emma’a (Gabon)

“Sugarcane” - Camidoh (Ghana)

“Last Last” - Burna Boy (Nigeria)

“Rush” - Ayra Starr (Nigeria)

“Calm Down” - Rema (Nigeria)

“Peru” - Fireboy DML (Nigeria) with Ed Sheeran (UK)

“Sete” - K.O (South Africa)

“Cough” - Kizz Daniel (Nigeria)

“MORTEL 06” - Innoss’B (Ivory Coast)

Best Music Video

“2 Sugar” - Wizkid (Nigeria) feat. Ayra Starr (Nigeria)

“Baddie” - Yemi Alade (Nigeria)

“Kpaflotage” - Suspect 95 (Ivory Coast)

“Loaded” - Tiwa Savage(Nigeria) & Asake (Nigeria)

“Ronda” - Blxckie (South Africa)

“Tombolo” - Kalash (Martinique)

“Yatapita” - Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania)

Best Newcomer

Azawi (Uganda)

Krys M (Cameroon)

Libianca (Cameroon)

Nissi (Nigeria)

Odumodublvck (Nigeria)

Pabi Cooper (South Africa)

Roseline Layo (Ivory Coast)

Best Collaboration

“Many Ways” - BNXN (Nigeria) with Wizkid (Nigeria)

“Mine” - Show Dem Camp (Nigeria) with Oxlade (Nigeria)

“Peru” - Fireboy DML (Nigeria) with Ed Sheeran (UK)

“Second Sermon” - Black Sherif (Ghana) with Burna Boy (Nigeria)

“Sete” - K.O (South Africa) with Young Stunna (South Africa), Blxckie (South


“Stamina” - Tiwa Savage with Ayra Starr (Nigeria) & Young Jonn (Nigeria)

“Trumpet” - Olamide (Nigeria) with Ckay (Nigeria)

“Unavailable” - Davido (Nigeria) with Musa Keys (South Africa)

Best DJ

Danni Gato (Cape Verde)

DJ BDK (Ivory Coast)

DJ Illans (France)

DJ Spinall (Nigeria)

Michael Brun (Haiti)

Uncle Waffles (Swaziland)

Best Producer

DJ Maphorisa (South Africa)

Juls (Ghana)

Kabza de Small (South Africa)

Kel-P (Nigeria)

Tamsir (Ivory Coast)

Best Gospel Artist

Benjamin Dube (South Africa)

Janet Otieno (Kenya)

KS Bloom (Ivory Coast)

Levixone (Uganda)

Moses Bliss (Nigeria)

Best Live

Burna Boy (Nigeria)

Fally Ipupa (DRC)

Musa Keys (South Africa)

The Compozers (Nigeria)

Wizkid (Nigeria)

Yemi Alade (Nigeria)

Best Dancer

Robot Boii (South Africa)

Tayc (France)

Uganda Ghetto Kids (Uganda)

Yemi Alade (Nigeria)

Zuchu (Tanzania)

Best Artist Africa - Anglophone

Asake (Nigeria)

Ayra Starr (Nigeria)

Black Sherif (Ghana)

Davido (Nigeria)

Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania)

Fireboy DML (Nigeria)

Best Artist Africa- Francophone

Didi B (Ivory Coast)

Emma’a (Gabon)

Fally Ipupa (DRC)

KO-C (Cameroon)

Locko (Cameroon)

Serge Beynaud (Ivory Coast)

Viviane Chidid (Senegal)

Best Artist Africa - Lusophone

Gerilson Insrael (Angola)

Lisandro Cuxi (Cape Verde)

Perola (Angola)

Plutonio (Mozambique)

Soraia Ramos (Cape Verde)

Best Artist - Rwanda

Ariel Wayz (Rwanda)

Bruce Melodie (Rwanda)

Bwiza (Rwanda)

Chriss Eazy (Rwanda)

Kenny Sol (Rwanda)

Best Artist - France & Belgium

Aya Nakamura (France)

Booba (France)

Nihno (France)

Ronisia (France)

Soolking (France)

Tayc (France)

Best Artist - UK Central Cee (UK)

Headie One (UK)

Ms Banks (UK)

Raye (UK)

Stormzy (UK)

Best Artist – The Caribbean

Admiral T (Guadeloupe)

Bamby (French Guiana)

Kalash (Martinique)

Maureen (Martinique)

Popcaan (Jamaica)

Princess Lover (Martinique)

Rutshelle Guillaume (Haiti)

Shenseea (Jamaica)

Best Artist - Indian Ocean

Donovan BTS (Mauritius)

GaEi (Madagascar)

Goulam (Comoros)

Mikl (Reunion)

Sega el (Reunion)

Terell Elymoor (Mayotte)

Best Artist - Brazil

Djonga (Brazil)

Iza (Brazil)

Leo Santana (Brazil)

Ludmilla (Brazil)

Luedji Luna (Brazil)

Best Artist - North Africa

Amira Zouhair (Morocco)

Artmasta (Tunisia)

Dystinct (Morocco)

El Grande Toto (Morocco)

Kader Japonais (Algeria)

Raja Meziane (Algeria)

Album of the Year “DNK”- Aya Nakamura (France)

“Love Damini” - Burna Boy (Nigeria)

“Maverick” - Kizz Daniel (Nigeria)

“More Love, Less Ego” - Wizkid (Nigeria)

“Timeless” - Davido (Nigeria)

“Work of Art” - Asake (Nigeria)