2023 Oscars: Black Singers, Rappers and Musicians Who Won Academy Awards
The Oscars are meant to honor and celebrate the best in the movie-making business like actors and directors, however singers, music producers and artists from the music industry have often stolen the show.
They have not only won Oscars for the songs they created, but also for their acting abilities. This year, Rihanna is leading the pack as the next singer to win a golden trophy for her track, “Lift Me Up.” As we wait for the 2023 Oscars, here are all of the Black artists and musicians who have won Oscars during the Academy Awards’ 94-year history.
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The now-deceased Isaac Hayes is one of the most decorated and talented musicians of all time. He not only became the third Black person to ever win an Oscar, but also the first to win a non-acting category, paving the way for artists and musicians to win on Hollywood’s biggest stage. His 1971 song, “Theme From Shaft” won the award for Best Original Song at the 1972 Oscars.
The late Irene Cara was a multi-talented entertainer who won the Oscar for Best Original Song in 1984 for the track, “Flashdance... What a Feeling” from the movie Flashdance.
“I Just Called To Say I Love You” winning Best Original Song Oscar®
One of the greatest singers and performers who ever walked the earth also has an academy award under his belt. In 1985, Stevie Wonder won an Oscar for Best Original Song for his classic record, “I Just Called To Say I Love You.”
We miss Prince. His catalog is filled with classic albums and songs. But, maybe none are more classic than his 1984 song: “Purple Rain.” In 1985, he won the Oscar for Best Original Song Score.
Although Lionel Richie was previously nominated for an Oscar in 1982, he ended up winning four years later in 1986 for his song, “Say You, Say Me” from the movie White Nights.
Jamie Foxx is a multi-talented entertainer. He’s a comedian, he can sing and act. A true triple threat in the industry. In 2005, Foxx won the Oscar for Best Actor for his critically-acclaimed performance in Ray. He was so damn good in that movie that people really thought Foxx was Ray Charles. That same Oscar night, he was also nominated in the supporting actor category for his role in Collateral.
Three 6 Mafia
“It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” Wins Original Song: 2006 Oscars
Here’s the biggest win for hip-hop in Oscars history. The Memphis hip-hop group is beloved for its countless southern rap classics. But after 2006, they added an Academy Award winner to their resume after taking home the award for Best Original Song for their record, “It’s Hard Out Here for a Pimp” from the movie Hustle & Flow.
Jennifer Hudson rose to fame as a contestant on the show American Idol. Although she did not win, people, outside of Simon Cowell, expected her to have a solid music career. Although she has, she’s also become an incredible actress. In her debut role as an actress, Hudson took home the Oscar for Best Supprting Actress for her performance in Dreamgirls.
Common & John Legend
These beloved artists won an Oscar together for their song,”Glory,” from the movie Selma.
For someone so young, H.E.R. has accomplished feats that artists wait for their whole career. In 2021, she won an Oscar for Best Original Song for her track, “Fight for You” from Judas and the Black Messiah. The R&B singer is well on her way to EGOT status.
Before winning big at the 2022 Grammys, Jon Batiste won an Oscar for Best Original Score for his work on the Disney movie Soul.
Although Questlove’s Oscar moment was stolen by an infamous slap, the musician’s incredible documentary Summer of Soul won the award for Best Documentary feature at the 2022 Oscars.
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