Nominate and Vote or Shut-up

In the early 2000 Malawi hired a Dane by the name Kim Splidsboel to be coach of the soccer national team, the Flames. If my memory serves me right, he is the man who brought up the term ‘Monday Coaches’ in our local parlance.

The thing is, there is a tendency for people to wait for a football team to play over the weekend and come Monday we start talking of how best the coach would have done to come up with either a winning team or a winning formula.

The same would be said of the Second Annual Music Malawi (MUMA) Awards where I have now seen many ‘Monday musical experts’ throwing and tossing about all sorts of accusations to the organisers and the award winners alike.

To start with the organisers did not bring us the names of the nominees if we go by the communications that have been going on as regards the awards.

From the word go, MediaCorp Limited, Tocadero Consulting as well as the Musicians Union of Malawi who were the organizers of the awards invited interested individuals to participate in the nomination of the best artists/groups/songs for the edition of the awards.

The organizers also involved media houses both print and electronic, selected clubs, music outlets and media practitioners to nominate the best act for the 2013/2014 season in each of the 13 categories.

Each participant was invited to select a maximum of ten acts in each category and thereafter a panel of judges was set up to scrutinize the given lists to come up with five in each category.

These five were then put up to a public voting. Just to jog up your memory:

In category 12 of the Best Female Artist – there were Ethel Kamwendo, Stella Mwanza, Aycee James, Princess Chitsulo, Favoured Martha

Category 11 of the Best Male Artist had Skeffa Chimoto, Lawi, Lulu, Dan Lu, and Katelele Ching’oma. Category 10 of the Best Acoustic/Jazz Artist had Lawi, Agorosso, Mawanga and Amalavi Movement and Alinafe Jimu.

Category 09 of the Best Hip-Hop/Rap Artist had Gwamba, K2B Block, Dominant 1, Tay Grin, Physics; Category 08 of the Best Reggae Artist had Truemale, Black Missionaries, Anthony Makondetsa, Sally Nyundo and Soul Raiders. Category 07 of the Best R n B Artist had Bucci, Sonye, Theo Thomson, Dan Kalima, Rhythm and Beyond, while Category 06 of the Best Gospel Artist (Female) the names up for the top spot were that of  Princess Chitsulo, Favoured Martha, Gloria Manong’a. Ethel Banda, Mada Ngoleka and on the opposite  Category 05 of the Best Gospel Artist (Male) had King James Phiri, Lloyd Phiri, Thoko Katimba, Evance Meleka, Allan Chirwa.

Lucius Banda, Gwamba, Skeffa Chimoto, Piksy, Dan Lu were put in Category 04 of the best Contemporary Afro Pop artist while in Category 03- Best of the best DanceHall Artist had Blasto, Black Jack, NesNes, King Chambiecco and Nyasa Queens lined up for the top accolade.

Agorosso, Katelele Ching’oma, Edgar  and Davis, Gides Chalamanda, Moses Makawa were in Category 02 of the Best Neo-Traditional Artist while in Category 01 of the Best New Artist had Adrian Kwelepeta, Flo-Dee, Bingo Lingo, Sangie, Mada Ngoleka.

The starting point was the nomination: if you did not want any of those that won why did you not nominate them in the first place? Some of you are of the view that others did not deserve the top spot. I share with you such sentiments.

My pick for example is Category 07 of the Best R n B Artist which had Bucci, Sonye, Theo Thomson, Dan Kalima, Rhythm and Beyond. The award was scooped by Kalima but believe you me, I have never heard of the guy before the award.

This however does not give me any right to scorn the whole process as a charade that mocked the music industry in the country. I would have settled for Theo Thomson in this category but because I did not vote for him, there was no way he would have made it. Let’s say I indeed voted for Theo, and ten voted for another, obviously he would have won.

Others claim that the nominees bought enough airtime and voted for themselves numerous times and to them this was cheating. Surely this is what we call creativity at its best especially when the rules are silent.

Otherwise take part before you start showing about the accusing finger, in short, nominate and vote but if you don’t , then just shut up!


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