Rapper up for award after video goes viral

Your Local Guardian: Richard Abiona, who performs as Fuse ODG Richard Abiona, who performs as Fuse ODG

A Mitcham rapper’s hit song has earned him more than a million YouTube hits and nomination for a national music award.

Richard Abiona – who performs as Fuse ODG – has attracted massive interest in his single Azonto, including 1.37m views of the song on the video sharing website.

The track has also won him two nominations at the Ghana music awards –- Afro-pop song of the year and collaboration of the year, alongside guest vocalist Tiffany.

He is the first British artist to be nominated for the awards and is set to perform the track, named after a traditional Ghanaian dance, at the televised ceremony next month.

Mr Abiona said: “It has been playing on the radio everywhere – One Extra, Choice FM. It has been mad.

“We always thought the music would take off but I was surprised how fast it went.

"It got more than 1m views on YouTube and was the 22nd most viewed clip on YouTube in the UK.

”I have always been performing in the community and at Merton events – now it is worldwide.”

Early work on the single was done with help from young people at the Escape youth group in Phipp’s Bridge, founded by Mr Abiona and friend Andre Hackett, who first set up youth projects in the area as teenagers.

The pair also run a mobile recording studio.

The Ghana Music Awards have been running for 13 years.

This year’s winners will be announced at a ceremony in Accra on April 14.


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