Burna Boy’s 30 Tattoos and their Meanings

If you like to listen to afrobeat then you must have definitely heard about Burna Boy (Damini Ebunoluwa Ogulu). The legend is looked up to by his fans for his incredible fashion sense and of course, his glorious tattoos. It is true that this singing sensation has no part of his upper body left that is not tattooed; but all these tattoos are not just stylistic quotients. They actually have deep meanings behind them that are inspired by Burna Boy’s own life! In this article, we have deciphered all the meanings behind his tattoos.

  • Psalms on Right Arm

Burna Boy Psalm Tattoo

Burna Boy has the whole Psalm 38 inked on his arm with black ink. He said that he got this tattoo during the phase of his life when he was really low and found the text very relatable.

The first one is a Psalm from the bible. I was just in a dark place and this was the Psalm that felt like I wrote it at that time.”

  • Rockstar Script on Hand

God's Love on Finger

He has a tattoo on the back of his palm that spells ‘Rock star’ and would look the same even if you turn it around. He explained it by saying, “This is the tattoo I got after my third American tour.”

  • Brick Wall Graffiti on Arm

Family Tattoo

He has a tattoo of a brick wall which is inscribed with the word ‘family’ in bold on it. Besides this, he also has the name of some of his family members on the wall. The whole tattoo gives a look of graffiti art in the tattoo format.

  • A Shining Bleeding Heart

Shining Heart Tattoo

This is a tattoo very close to his heart because it represents the fact that while something might be shining from the outside, it might still need affection and care because it might be broken.

  • Fela Kuti Tattoo on Arm

Fela Kuti Tattoo

Burna Boy considers Fela Kuti the best musician that he knows and that is why he has a tattoo of the singer on his arm. It is a close-up of his face done in black ink.

  • Nickname on his Arm

Nickname on his Arm

He has a tattoo of the nickname of what Fela Kuti and his grandfather used to call each other, i.e. ariwo ju.

  • The Hydroplane on Upper Arm

Pablo Escobar Plane Tattoo

He has a tattoo of the crashed plane that Pablo Escobar used to represent the fact that “…anything can get from anywhere to anybody, it’s intriguing”.

  • The Debut Album on Arm

Life Tattoo

Burna Boy has the name of his first album ‘LIFE’ inked on his arm which means ‘Leaving an impact for eternity.’

  • National Coat of Arms on Upper Arm

National Coat of Arms on Upper Arm

Burna Boy has a symbol for the national coat of arms on his upper arm with a representation of the River Niger and the meeting of three rivers. It also has the words Omo Niger which means ‘the child of Nigeria.’

  • Name of his Best Friend on Ribs

The name of his best friend

He has the name of his best friend Gambo, whose real name was Gabriel Serenkuma, inked on his ribs to pay a tribute to their friendship. It also has the text ‘Lives Forever’ underneath his name and a portrait right above it.

  • Aristokrat Records’ Logo on Upper Arm

Aristokrat Record Logo

He also has a logo of Aristokrat Records, the record label that found the talent of the Nigerian Singer. It is also added with ‘cottissimos’ which means ‘pious.’

  • Scarface Stewie on his Bicep

Scarface on Upper Arm

Burna Boy has a tattoo of Scarface Stewie, Stewie Griffin from Family Guy done in black shading effect. This tattoo has roots in his younger days. In his words,

I can’t even tell you why I got it. Only people that knew me in 2010 know why. Don’t jump into it.”

  • ”God’s Love” on his Fingers

God's Love on Finger

Burna Boy has ‘God’s Love’ written on the knuckles.

  • ‘Burna Boy’ on Chest

Burna Boy Tattoo on Chest

He has his own stage name ‘Burna Boy’ written on the upper part of his chest with bold black ink.

  • Wings on Chest

Eagle Wings on Chest

While he has never revealed the true meaning of the wing tattoo, we are guessing it is something very inspirational and significant like most of his tattoos are.

  • A Helicopter, Japanese Clouds, a Man with a Parachute on the Abdomen

Helicopter, Man with Parachute and Clouds

This scene could have a story as it shows survival instincts. Probably it represents hope. Burna Boy has not revealed anything about this tattoo.

  • ‘African Giant’ on his Stomach

African Giant Tattoo

Burna Boy has a bold tattoo that says ‘African Giant.’ It is also the name of his fourth studio album which was released in 2019.

  • Weed Leaf on Chest

Weed Tattoo on Chest

The Nigerian singer has a weed leaf done in simple black ink right in the middle of his chest.

  • ‘Prosper’ on Neck

Prosper Tattoo on Neck

Burna Boy has ‘Prosper’ written in a beautiful font on his neck.

  • ‘Legend’ on Bicep

Legend Tattoo

In bold black letters, Burna Boy has the word ‘Legend’ inked in.

  • ‘Wisdom’ on Arm

'Wisdom' on Arm

On the outer part of his arm, he has the word ‘Wisdom’ inked.

  • ‘Outsider’ Tattoo on Ribs

Outsider Tattoo on Ribs

Unlike his other textual tattoos which are quite bold, the ‘Outsider’ tattoo on his rib area is done in a sleek font.

  • ‘South Side’ on Upper Back

South Side Tattoo

Burna Boy has ‘South Side’ written in bold letters on his upper back. The bold texts are filled in with black and grey shading to enhance the look.

  • ‘Gifted’ and ‘Blessed’ on Chest

'Gifted' and 'Blessed' Tattoo

Burna Boy has ‘Gifted’ and ‘Blessed’ written on either side of his chest. While he hasn’t officially spoken about this ink, we are assuming that it is to pay his gratitude towards the Lord and destiny.

  • Portrait on Leg

Portrait on Leg

Burna Boy has three portrait tattoos on both his leg. Who these portrait tattoos refer to is hard to guess since he hasn’t officially spoken about it.

  • ‘Thug’ on Leg

Thug Tattoo on Leg

Burna Boy’s leg tattoos are a bit hard to decipher as they are not clear, but this text tattoo looks like ‘Thug’ written right below his knee.

  • Lion on Chest

Lion Tattoo on Chest

In between the collage of tattoos on his chest, there is a small lion tattoo hidden. It is a simple tattoo and gels well with the rest of the theme.

  • The Name of his Mother on Chest

Bose Tattoo on Chest

Burna Boy has written his mother’s first name ‘Bose’ on his shoulder. Bose Ogulu, or ‘Mama Burna,’ is an academic, businesswoman, and talent manager who looks after her son’s career.

  • Dove Tattoo on Neck

Dove Tattoo on Neck

Burna Boy has a dove tattoo on the side of his neck done in shading effect. The dove is a universal symbol of peace and happiness.

  • Unidentified Symbol on Neck

Tattoo on Neck

Burna Boy has a symbol on the other side of his neck. The singer has not revealed the significance of this symbol yet.

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