29 March 2014

Zambia: Awards Should Be Transparent, Professional

THE Born and Bred Music Video Awards 2013 are finally behind us but with a lot of question marks on the list of winners. The Zambian Music Awards (ZAMA) which were held a month before the ZNBC Music Video Awards saw Lusaka musicians dominating the list of winners while Copperbelt artistes led by Macky 2 were also leading during the recently held Born and Bred awards.

People have now started stereotyping the two awards with the ZAMA being for Lusaka artistes while the Born and Bred for those on the Copperbelt, 'Kopala' artistes. It is a very unfortunate situation for Zambian music if public confidence lacks in these honours that have attracted a huge following even from non-ardent music followers.

The essence of awards is not to impress certain groupings or a region but to honour excellence in different categories of music. The awards need to win the confidence of musicians and the fans. The process of nomination and categorisation needs to be transparent to allow only the best-produced works voted for by the public.

It doesn't mean when a song is popular then the video will automatically be a hit. After the Born and Bred Music Video Awards, we now wish to see the video that emerged as video of the year compete at the Channel O Music Video Awards if sincerely it is the best video that Zambia has seen in the past year.

When it comes to the categorisation of the videos at the Born and Bred Awards, here is what the aspiring presidential candidate for Zambia Association of Musicians (ZAM) Mukubesa Mundia, aka Petersen had to say: "Born & Bred Music Video Awards category makers don't know that they don't know music genres so they repeat the same mess every year...

"I saw MC WABWINO's House song 'TIPA' in the Dancehall category, MANAS' reggae beat & chorus song with kwaito verses in the R&B category.. The Dancehall category was full of Afro hype dance like songs... ."

The Komboni Radio deejay concluded that research, consultation & music knowledge was needed in that section.

"However, congrats, the awards were cool & u pulled it off." Without doubt the staging and the event itself were awesome though the organisers need to work on live performances, especially that it is a musical show and not just any other awards.

Congratulations Chibamba Kanyama and your Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation team.

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Elsewhere, I would like to share with you some news from Jamaica where the man described as most influential artiste on the island Vybz Kartel might spend the rest of his life in prison after he was found guilty of a murder charge on March 13, 2014.

Dancehall and reggae star Vybz Kartel has been convicted of murder. In a high-profile trial under heavy security, Kartel and three co-defendants were found guilty of killing an associate, Clive Lizard Williams, in a row over a missing gun. One defendant was cleared of wrongdoing.

On Thursday March 13, Jamaican police in riot gear guarded streets outside, and parts of the capital Kingston were cordoned off in advance of the verdict to prevent any disruption by fans of the entertainer.

However, shortly before the jury started to deliberate in the afternoon, about 200 people briefly broke through barricades at one intersection shouting "Free Kartel!"

Prosecutors alleged Williams was beaten to death at the reggae performer's home in August 2011 after being lured there to answer for two missing illegal guns.

His body has never been found. Police testified they retrieved a text message from Kartel's phone saying

Williams was chopped up in a "mincemeat" so fine that his remains would never be found.

Kartel, whose real name is Adidja Palmer, has been in jail for about three years since his arrest in connection with the case.

Defence lawyer Tom Tavares-Finson had told jurors that the prosecution's case against Kartel was "dishonest" and "incompetent", noting that witness statements and a compact disc with evidence saved on it somehow went missing. After the verdict, he said he was planning to appeal on behalf of the convicted men.

Last year, another murder case against Kartel and two other co-defendants collapsed after prosecutors failed to produce evidence to support allegations that the trio killed businessman Barrington "Bossy" Burton in 2011.

In addition to the conviction, a male juror was arrested last Thursday evening on charges of attempting to bribe the jury foreman in an attempt to influence the panel to free Kartel. Authorities confirmed the arrest but gave no further details.

According to local media, the 65-day trial was the longest running criminal hearing in the history of Jamaica's circuit court system.

Kartel will be sentenced in court on April 4 2014 while the court is yet to decide if the deejay can record music in prison.

Kartel's songs are played widely in Jamaica, and many young people, especially those in blighted slums, consider him a hero of sorts.

ROAD SAFETY TIP - It is an offence for a pedestrian not to use the designated pedestrian crossing or incorrect usage. For comments; email - cleverzulu21@gmail.com

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