Why Shatta Wale must win Artiste of the Year!

I know the title of this piece maybe misleading, especially when the nominees of this year’s awards have not been made public yet. I employ you to read to the end, you may get my drift.

The 15th Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMA) was launched on Thursday, January 16, at the Alisa Hotel in Accra. According to Mrs. Theresa Ayaode, the Executive Director of Charter House, organisers of the awards, the various Committees involved in all the stages of the awards have met and are planning towards the occasions.

This confirms that, Ghana is ready for nerve-wracking awards ceremony this year. It is expected that this year’s event is going to be a wonderful experience. Before I go to into the reasons for this article, let me share with you the VGMA 2014 time table for this year.

After the press launch, the VGMA will officially be launched in a grand style and the nominees unveiled via a nomination party that will take place in March 2014.

The VGMA Nominees Jam and Music everywhere Tour has always preceded the awards. This is scheduled for April 2014. For the first time in the history of the awards, the media was allowed to vote for the venue for this year’s destination.

The train this year will be moving to Tamale, but of course, there will be stopovers on the road leading to the Northern regional capital.

Still in April, members of the Academy of the VGMA, will conduct secret voting for their favourite nominees. 15 awards will be given out in the Industry Awards category at the Industry Awards Night.

The main awards event is scheduled for May, 2014, at the Accra International Conference Centre and Prize presentation held in June, 2014.

We are at the part of the year, where all attention is focused on Ghanaian musicians whose works will evaluated and recognized.

Each category of the awards has a category definition that makes it unique. All the same, a basic for all the categories is that, an Artiste will be appraised by the Academy, Board and the General Public as one with the highest audience appeal and popularity.

Shatta Wale

Shatta Wale

The word to note here is ‘popularity’. Considering that an award is based solely on popularity and huge presence in 2013, I think Shatta Wale tops every other artiste and is likely to go home with the biggest award on the night.

These are some of my reasons:

  • Hardworking: Shatta Wale epitomises hard work. When he released his first ever song ‘Moko Hoo’ years ago, there were other equally good songs released the same year from great artistes. Fast forward now, I think Shatta Wale is ruling Ghana music now. It is by sheer hard work. It doesn’t really matter how he got to the top, hard work really pays!
  • Help Dancehall: Dancehall like Reggae has not received much attention from Ghanaians over the years since the inception of the awards. This is evident in the number of categories that is available for the Reggae and Dancehall artistes. If there is attention on that genre of music now, Shatta should be acknowledged.
  • Confidence: There are lots of ills in the music industry. But, while practitioners complain to the media secretly, Shatta Wale was bold enough to air out whatever it is that was worrying him through song. Ghanaians do not like confident people but of course, Shatta Wale did not care and it has paid off!
  • Apologetic: There is time for everything on earth. There comes a time that as a human, one will regret things they have done over the years. Under such circumstances, the solution is to apologise. Shatta Wale’s apology to Charter House was timely and wisely chosen his show of the year to make amends. At the start of 2013, he cast aspersions on Charter House and ended the year with an apology to them. Also, I want to ask a question. Do people who pick awards merit winning those awards? If yes, then there is no point in linking Shatta Wale’s apology to Charter House to his song that he recorded dissing them. For me, I think his apology shows maturity. Besides, Charter House does not determine who wins an award. 
  • Holds the Queen’s Relay Baton: Even though this has nothing to do with music, one needs to be a top personality to be considered to jog or run around with the Queen’s Relay Baton, an exercise that precedes the Commonwealth Games. I understand some artistes refused the gesture because they wanted to be paid to run with the Baton. But, Shatta Wale capitalised on it and made history. 
  • Inspiration: Before his revival and perhaps becoming top of his game, lots of artistes had already made their mark. However, none commanded the level of following he has and his amassing. Let’s not forget that, he’s seen as a ‘tin’ god and worshiped in the ghettos. He’s an inspiration to many on the streets. 
  • Helping Samini: At some point in our lives, we all need a helping hand. He helped Samini to stay visible in 2013. A school of thought has it that if Shatta Wale had not attacked him and made all the accusations, would Samini have been forced to reply with a song which is now buzzing everywhere? Samini was a big artiste who was struggling for attention to stay relevant in 2013.
  • Everybody likes his ‘thing’: When some of the people he started with left the music scene, he performed at the ghettos and built himself up and waiting for his single to become a hit and catapult him to the top. In Ghana, a hit single is sure to get people to listen to other songs of yours and follow you. That exactly was what happened to Shatta Wale. Now everybody like his ‘thing’ and listening to all his songs.
  • Most Popular Song: Ghanaians must stop being hypocritical with regard to the feud Shatta Wale and Samini as to which one of them is the Dancehall King title. For me, I do not care who gets the title. I think that 2013 was a year for the artiste behind the song, ‘Dancehall King’. He made other songs looked substandard and immature.
  • Biggest ever to win: Over the past 14 years, the Artiste of the Year award has been won by some great artistes in the industry, but none of them enjoyed popularity throughout a year like Shatta Wale has. In 2013, the notch was moved further up and thanks to a certain Shatta Wale.

Sorry if I didn’t state all the reasons but you are welcome if you have a contrary opinion.

By:  Ebenezer Anangfio / Graphic Showbiz 


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