Nigerian Twitter was set ablaze on June 8 when Davido, one of Nigeria’s biggest music stars, referred to Burna Boy as a “new cat” during an interview with a French publication.
The video clip of the interview, shared by an influential Twitter user, quickly stirred up a heated debate among fans of both artists, who strongly disagreed on the accuracy of this classification.
During the interview, Davido confidently proclaimed that he and Wizkid were undeniably the first Nigerian artists to break into the international music scene.
He then proceeded to mention several rising talents whom he referred to as “new cats” responsible for taking Afrobeats to a global audience. Among the artists he listed were Rema, Fireboy, Mayorkun, Asake, and Burna Boy.
Burna Boy’s younger sister, Nissi, who is also a musician, responded to Davido’s statement by sharing a video on her Instagram story.
The video showcased her dancing at Burna Boy’s recent historic London Stadium concert, which drew an astounding crowd of 60,000 fans. Alongside the video, Nissi captioned, “New cats are facing their hustle.”
Davido’s remarks triggered a massive reaction across social media, with some individuals concurring with his classification. They pointed to 2018, particularly Burna Boy’s hit single “YE,” as the beginning of his stellar rise to stardom.
On the opposing side of the debate, there were those who disagreed, citing Burna Boy’s early success with his 2012 hit single “Like To Party” as evidence that he cannot be categorized as a “new cat.”
This episode highlights the passionate and sometimes divisive nature of discussions surrounding Nigerian music pioneers and emerging talents.
The Nigerian music industry has experienced a remarkable surge in recent years, with artists like Davido, Wizkid, and Burna Boy achieving global recognition.
As the industry continues to evolve, debates over who can be considered a pioneer and what defines a “new cat” are likely to persist, fueled by the diverse perspectives of music enthusiasts.