Born in 1960 a month before the independence of Benin (then Dahomey), she has been singing for more than 30 years in her paternal and mother tongues, Fon and Yoruba, as well as in French and English.

"Angélique Kidjo is a source of inspiration. She is one of the best singer-songwriters of international music," the Swedish jury said in a statement.

French-Beninese singer Angélique Kidjo in New York on September 24, 2022 © ANGELA WEISS / AFP/Archives

Nicknamed "the African diva" by Time magazine, she has already won five Grammys, the biggest awards in American music.

The British Chris Blackwell, 85, created the record company Island Records in 1959, which became legendary after welcoming Bob Marley, Cat Stevens, Roxy Music and U2.

Arvo Pärt, described at 87 as "the most performed living composer in the world" by the jury, was awarded for his invention in the 1970s of "tintinnabuli", a musical writing technique.

Founded in 1989 by former ABBA manager Stig Anderson, last year's Polar Music Prize was awarded to Iggy Pop and songwriter Diane Warren.

The prizes, as well as a sum of 600,000 crowns (about 53,600 euros), will be awarded to the winners in Stockholm on 23 May.

© 2023 AFP