Les Flammes 2024: with three awards, Aya Nakamura reigns over French “urban cultures”

She is not about to give up her crown: as expected, Aya Nakamura left on Thursday April 26 as queen, with three prizes at the Flames, trophies for “urban cultures”

Les Flammes 2024: with three awards, Aya Nakamura reigns over French “urban cultures”

She is not about to give up her crown: as expected, Aya Nakamura left on Thursday April 26 as queen, with three prizes at the Flames, trophies for “urban cultures”. As a symbol, it was she who opened the show at the Châtelet in Paris with a medley of her hits. With, already, a sparkling crown illuminating the decor behind her.

At 28, the most listened to French-speaking singer in the world has logically crushed the competition with the awards for female artist of the year, new pop album and international influence. She had already won the female artist prize in 2023, for the first edition of Les Flammes. In February, the Victoires de la Musique awarded him an equivalent prize, after having previously awarded him an anecdotal distinction.

Among the men, it was Gazo, who, like last year, was crowned male artist of the year. A trophy that he also lifted at the Victoires in February. The Flames, in the future, will have to be careful not to repeat themselves, a criticism that has stuck to the Victoires, accused of always rewarding the same artists.

Aya Nakamura's triumph comes in any case as the far right has denigrated her since the magazine L'Express suggested that she sing a piece by Edith Piaf at the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games ( Olympic Games) in Paris, July 26.

But the interpreter of Djadja – nearly 960 million views on YouTube – has illustrious defenders. In the Nouvel Obs on Thursday, actor Omar Sy makes “the distressing observation that we are here, in France; that in 2024 there will still be a debate on an artist like Aya Nakamura, whose career and great talent I salute. »

The presence of the artist at the Olympics has not been confirmed. For the President of the Republic, Emmanuel Macron, the singer would “have her place in an opening or closing ceremony of the Games”. And to add that the decision rests with the artistic director of these ceremonies, Thomas Jolly.

De Gaza à Adama

In this 2nd edition of Les Flammes, one of the first prizes that counts, that of the best concert, was awarded to SCH for its appearance at the Vélodrome in Marseille, its city, in 2023.

Then the evening took a political turn: rapper Médine dedicated his live performance to the people of Gaza, performing his song Gaza Soccer Beach, released in 2015. “There is not enough space on the walls of the theater [of Châtelet] to be able to register the names of the 35,000 victims,” he then declared, while first names appeared in the background.

The rapper is escorted by controversies, with, the latest, a tweet deemed anti-Semitic which created controversy in the summer of 2023. “Not only am I not anti-Semitic but I have also been fighting against anti-Semitism for twenty years as close as possible, on the ground,” Medina defended.

Assa Traoré, sister of Adama Traoré, also took the stage. His brother died in July 2016 in Val-d'Oise two hours after his arrest by gendarmes. “My commitment has a name, that of my brother, that of Adama,” she said on stage. The general public prosecutor's office of the Paris Court of Appeal requested in February the confirmation of the dismissal of the case in favor of the gendarmes, while recognizing "a causal link" between the arrest of Adama Traoré and his death. The decision will be made on May 16.

The Flames ceremony was broadcast for the first time on Thursday live on W9, in parallel with Twitch and YouTube.

The nominations and winners result, for the vast majority of trophies awarded in the evening, from the aggregate of the public vote and the jury vote.

Les Flammes were born in reaction to Les Victoires, who often snubbed rap and r’n’b. This new ceremony is the result of the association between Yard, a media and communications agency of which Tom Brunet is co-founder, and Booska-P, another media. Spotify, the leading music streaming platform, has been associated with the event from the start.