Arooj Aftab won his very first Grammy. His rendition of “Mohabbat” just won Best Global Musical Performance at the 2022 Grammys. The Brooklyn-based Pakistani composer won the category ahead of Femi Kuti (“Pà Pá Pà”), Wizkid and Tems (“Essence “), Angélique Kidjo and Burna Boy (“Do Yourself”) and Yo-Yo Ma and Angélique Kidjo (“Blewu”).
“I think I’m going to pass out. Wow, thank you very much. I feel like this category in itself has been so crazy,” Aftab said in his acceptance speech. “Burna Boy, Wizkid, Femi Kuti, Angélique Kidjo—should this be called world’s best music performance? I feel like this should be called ‘yacht party category’. But, what anyway, thank you so much to everyone who helped me make this record, to all my amazing collaborators, for following me and making this music that I made about everything that broke and put me back together. Thank you for listening and making it yours.
Aftab was also nominated in the Best New Artist category this year, which went to Olivia Rodrigo. Read Pitchfork’s Rising profile “Get to know Arooj Aftab, the rebel singer who is reinventing traditional South Asian music today.”
Follow all of Pitchfork’s coverage of the 2022 Grammys.