How British-Ghanaian Act Fuse ODG Blazed The Trail For Africa’s Afrobeats Trend With His T.I.N.A Movement

BY Edwin Lamptey October 4, 2023 8:35 AM EDT
Photo Source: Instagram/@fuseodg

The exploits, along with the recognition being trumpeted about the likes of Burna Boy, Asake and Fireboy DML, accurately describe how the wave of the African music genre, Afrobeats, is spreading worldwide like a virus – definitely the good kind.

Afrobeats continues to bring happiness and is connecting the African continent to the rest of the world. From clubs in New York, to the streets of London, DJs are now heard blending Afrobeats tunes to spice up their grooves for people to jam to.

Backtracking a little bit, the term “Afrobeats” is reported to have been coined by a UK-based Ghanaian disc jockey, DJ Abrantee during an interview with Destination Africa on BBC Radio 1Xtra in 2014. 

Before this now-popular music genre started riding the wave solidifying Africa’s place in world music, acts from the continent including Nigerian stars Davido, D’banj, PSquare, Ice Prince, and WizKid, together with Ghanaian counterparts Castro, R2Bees, Sarkodie, Becca, Okyeame Kwame had some listenership in the diaspora.

However, about a decade ago, British-born Ghanaian music icon, Nana Richard Abiona, popularly known as Fuse ODG, caught on to the new sound that was emanating from Africa and joined the new age pioneers to break ground for Afrobeats to be heard all over the globe.

The Million Pound Girl crooner took over the dimly-lit Afrobeats torch and took the world by storm with some of the greatest hits the genre has known including, Azonto, Antenna, and T.I.N.A thereby propelling the genre into a space where it could blow up.

The 34-year-old’s T.I.N.A album was shrouded in mystery as the cult followers who had fallen in love with the vibrant sounds produced inquired what the abbreviation stood for.

Rightly so, the award-winning star indicated that the sound was a culmination of the paradigm shift of music on the African content and revealed that T.I.N.A simply meant, “This Is New Africa”.

This music sound and style movement “started” by Fuse ODG to embrace and celebrate Africa’s culture and diversity set the grounds for other parts of the world to appreciate the new wave.

The 2013 Best MOBO Award winner for The Best African Act category indicated that his T.I.N.A movement aimed to change the negative perspectives about Africa and he was telling a bright narrative through music, arts, and fashion.

His contribution to the now ever-popular genre cannot be overlooked as he painstakingly resounded the message of Afrobeats to the world. From that time on, Afrobeats has grown exponentially and has won the hearts of billions across the globe.

Afrobeats keeps evolving and it is currently topping world music charts, and taking over social media dance trends.

This has been made possible by the trailblazers including Fuse ODG and recent show-stoppers in the persons of Davido, WizKid, Burna Boy, Asake, Tems, OliveTheBoy, and a host of other high-flyers.