Nasty C wins big at Metros
Hell Naw! That’s the surprise winner of the coveted Song of the Year Award at last night’s 16th Metro FM Music Awards. Rapper David Ngcobo, best known as Nasty C, bagged the award, bringing yet another gong to his record label Mabala Noise, a stable that he hailed as the “university of music” in his acceptance speech. It was a fantastic night for Nasty C, who walked away with several awards, including for Best Hip-Hop Album, Best Male Album and Best New Artist.
Another Mabala Noise artist, Riky Rick, clinched the award for Best Hit Single for Sidlukotini; rapper Du Boiz won the Best Music Video nod for Dope Dream; and Musa Sukwene, who signed recently with the label, won Best African Pop Album.
Another of the label’s big names, L’vovo, got kudos for Best Kwaito Single, and recent sign-on Kelly Khumalo took the Best Female Album award for My Truth.
Amanda Black, signed by label Ambitiouz Entertainment, bagged two awards: the MMA 16 Listeners’ Choice and the Best R&B Single for Separate.
Ahead of last night’s ceremony, held at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Convention Centre in Durban in KwaZulu-Natal, chaos was expected after the financial problems besetting the SABC were taking their toll on the premier radio awards function.
SABC staff told City Press yesterday that this year, Metro FM did everything it could to save costs, including using its in-house public relations staff to handle the event’s logistics.
One staff member claimed the awards were almost postponed because everything – from logistics to production – was done at the 11th hour.
“We were late for everything this year. That is why we decided to do everything in-house.”
SABC spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago confirmed the broadcaster did its best to save money this year.
“But saving costs was not the only issue. We knew we had the staff capacity in the organisation and we tried to cut the long process involved in procuring services. We cancelled a number of things, such as the Metro FM in-house magazine, as well as the comedy show, which usually takes place a few days before the awards ceremony,” he said. “It was just a contractual decision.”
The SABC employees City Press spoke to said the artists’ contracts were finalised late.
One employee added that not much was expected from the award show’s executive producer, Thokozani Nkosi, and its musical director, former Idols winner Khaya Mthethwa.
“Tonight, there will be too many church elements for a commercial radio station such as Metro FM. Do not expect a ‘wow’ awards ceremony,” the staffer said a few hours before the event began.
Despite the misgivings expressed, it was hard to imagine that performers such as Babes Wodumo, Mshoza, award-winner Black, Cassper Nyovest and Jaziel Brothers would not bring the heat.
Also on the programme were Khumalo and gospel star Brenda Mtambo, who paid tribute to legendary music couple Caiphus Semenya and Letta Mbulu.
Ambitiouz Entertainment dominated the nominations list with Black, Miss Pru DJ and Sjava, but it was not the winning record label.
It has been a bad month for Ambitiouz, with three of its biggest names – Fifi Cooper and Metro FM nominees A-Reece and B3nchMarQ – announcing their departure from the label.
A-Reece, who was recently named Lyricist of the Year at the SA HipHop Awards, hinted in his recently released single, Loyal, that Ambitiouz Entertainment artists did not get to keep their awards after winning them.
“Where the F do the awards stay at?” he rapped, adding that he was being paid less than R20 000 a month and publicists at Ambitiouz could afford to buy cars before its musicians.
“Getting monthly pay of less than 20K was never part of the plan/ PR buying cars before the artist, it doesn’t match up,” he raps.
Last year, it was reported that rapper Emtee and Cooper were revolting against Ambitiouz owner Kgosi Mahumapelo, after he allegedly seized their Metro FM statuettes and kept them in his office.
Emtee was also reportedly angry with Mahumapelo for paying him and Cooper the same bonuses in December, claiming he had raked in more money in gigs than she had.
Rumours of buying awards have also dogged the label, but Mahumapelo responded: “This is the norm in an industry controlled by few. When a formidable competitor enters the marketplace, the competition would spread malicious rumors to deliberately dent their credibility – sadly, this is such a case.”
About allegations that he kept winners’ statuettes, Mahumapelo said: “In the fortunate instance that an artist wins an award, the label will ensure that both the label and the artist have an award, even if it means a replica would be ordered from the award company.”
TV personality Khanyi Mbau looked radiant on the black carpet at the Metro FM Music Awards in Durban last night