Mmegi/The Reporter (Gaborone)

Botswana: 'Zeus' Gets Channel O Music Video Nomination

Game "Zeus" Bantsi has once again been nominated for the Channel O Music Video Awards, and this time around is the only local artist who has been able to make the nominees' list for the prestigious awards.

Zeus is amongst six other nominees from around Africa in the category of Best Hip Hop Video. His Gijima video will be judged against Hip Hop Pantsula's All I Need video, Okyeame Kwame's Woso video, Jay Ru's Big Boi Anthem video, Pro's Uthini Ngo Pro, and Black Rhino's Black Chata video.

While this is a competition, Zeus, who is currently managed by Tshepo "Rox" Sikwane of Big Dawg Production, is confident that with the work that they have done, he stands a good chance of bringing the award home. The young man, who seems to have a vision of where he would like to take his music, calmly explained that he does not think too much about who he is competing with, but rather looks at himself and his work and tries to make it the best.

"I don't lose my sleep over any competition," Zeus reiterated.

He further explained that he puts more of his energy on mobilising support, both locally and in other African markets, noting that they have already done much in terms of marketing his music both in Botswana and other markets in the continent. Zeus noted that while it will be a big honour for him to win the award, being nominated already is a plus as it gives him exposure, not only in Botswana, but across Africa. Asked what being nominated for an international award means to him, he simply said it shows that he is doing the right thing. He added that recognition of local musicians in international awards should be a wake-up call for stakeholders to work harder to accelerate the development of the music industry. He noted that, while music is international, and one cannot only target their home market, it is often sad to see local musicians getting better recognition outside their countries. He said the music industry in other countries is competitive, the pay is good and musicians are treated well as professionals, which in turn helps improve the quality of work in the industry. Zeus acknowledged that he might be at a disadvantage as compared to other nominees in his category given Botswana's tiny population, but quickly pointed out that he is not going to use that as an excuse. He said through the work he and his manager have done - to market his music to the rest of the continent - he is sure that he does stand a good chance. He, however, reaffirmed that while he might have many fans outside his home country, he still needs Batswana to vote for him in large numbers. To vote, viewers can either sms to +27839208400 or vote on the web at www.channelo.tv. Zeus's voting code is 10 C. The video awards have a total of 15 categories. Gijima video is available on You Tube.

The awards brought to you by Amarula Cream are scheduled to take place on October 29 at Carnival City in Gauteng and will be broadcast on DStv's Channel 320.

Last year Zeus was nominated in the Best Ragga Dance Hall category for his Imagination video.

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