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Childish Gambino wins Song Of The Year Grammy for 'This Is America'

11 February 2019, MVT 10:11
(FILES) In this file photo taken on September 13, 2018 Childish Gambino/Donald Glover attends Rihanna's 4th Annual Diamond Ball at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. - For many artists, the Grammy awards gala is not just music's biggest night -- it is also a cultural battleground rife with criticisms that provocative black artists are systematically not getting their due. This year, that criticism could be muted -- even if momentarily -- when the Best Music Video prize is handed out. The five nominees in the oft-overlooked category are boundary-pushing -- and they are all black. Their visual work showcases industry innovation and is rich with social commentary on Donald Trump's America. "It's the year of Trump -- the need to speak out is overwhelming," Carol Vernallis, a music scholar at Stanford University in California, told AFP. "I can imagine African-American artists feeling the need to push."Childish Gambino -- the favorite to win on February 10, 2019, according to award prediction website Gold Derby -- took the internet by storm last spring with his painfully striking viral video, "This Is America." (Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP)
11 February 2019, MVT 10:11

Childish Gambino on Sunday took home the Grammy for Song of the Year -- honouring best songwriting -- for his politically charged "This Is America," whose graphic music video carried a strong message on gun violence and racism.

The trap gospel song packed with social commentary nabbed one of the top awards of the night over heavyweights Drake, Kendrick Lamar and Lady Gaga.

The song's striking video from Childish Gambino -- the alter ego of actor and recording artist Donald Glover, who has snagged three Grammys so far -- racked up more than 35 million YouTube views in just two days last spring.

Earlier Sunday, he won Grammys for Best Music Video and Best Rap/Sung Performance.

But Glover was not in attendance at the Staples Center, and organizers said he had declined an invitation to perform at the event.

Upon the video's release, social media lit up with comments over its intense allusions to the oppression of black people and America’s all-too-common mass shootings.

"This Is America" juxtaposes an up-tempo rhythm, layered with church hymns and Afrobeats with a heavier, more foreboding bassline in what is perhaps a metaphor for mainstream America’s perception of black culture and the much darker undertones of its often more brutal reality.

The artist's win is his first in a major Grammy category and fourth overall after his hit "Redbone" won the prize for Best Traditional R&B Performance last year. Childish Gambino has notched 12 career Grammy nominations.

As an actor and producer, the California-born performer has garnered critical acclaim for his surrealist comedy-drama television series "Atlanta," in which he stars.

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