With the continental Kora Awards promising to present $1 million (Sh97.2m) to the best artiste on the continent this year, and the MTV MAMAs unveiling their nominees last week, it is crunch time as the continent’s finest face off again to determine who’s the best For Kenyan artistes and their fans, there was little to celebrate after it emerged that Sauti Sol were the only Kenyan act nominated for the MTV MAMAs 2015 on a nominees list released last Thursday. The 2014 MTV EMA Best African Act winners, whose Sura Yako hit was voted the Best Song in East Africa during the Kilimanjaro Awards held last weekend, are now chasing a treble having received yet another nomination for the prestigious Black Entertainment (BET) Awards 2015 slated for June 28.
With the continental and international music awards nominees now having been unveiled, a pattern is forming as to who the continental big wigs are. Nigeria’s Wizkid, Davido and Yemi Alade, Casper Nyovest and AKA from South Africa, Tanzania’s Diamond and Venessa Mdee and Stonebwoy and Sarkodie both from Ghana, join Sauti Sol on Africa’s top music stars list this year.
Sauti Sol, for example, battle it out with AKA, Stonebwoy, Sarkodie, Fally Ipupa, Wizkid and Yemi Alade in the Best International Act: African category at the BETs.
Sauti Sol again faces Wizkid and Yemi Alade in the MTV MAMA Song of the Year category that also features Casper Nyovest.
AKA, Davido, Sarkodie and Wizkid meet again in the Best Male nomination where Diamond features with Yemi Alade, Venessa Mdee, Seyi Shay (Nigeria) and Busiswa and Bucie, both from South Africa lining up for the Best Female spot.
Sauti Sol has also been nominated for the MTV MAMA Best Group alongside South Africa’s Black Motion and Beatenberg, Nigeria’s P-Square and B4 from Angola.
From the pattern, it is clear that Sauti Sol is now East Africa’s top music group followed by Diamond. There is no arguing that Venessa Mdee is cutting a niche for herself as the best female artiste in the region with Kenyan female acts who used to dominate the event before now remaining a memory.
Even though P-Square cannot be written off, Davido, Wizkid and Yemi Alade are clearly running the show in Nigeria, Africa’s biggest music export. The likes of Seyi Shay, Patoranking, Burna Boy and Flavour are but pretenders to the throne… at least for now.
Although not picked in the recent nominations, Uganda’s Jose Chameleone stands out as a force to reckon with when it comes to continental music superiority.