It is The Headies season once more and organizers of what is billed as ‘Nigeria’s biggest and best organized’ music awards recently released the list of nominees for this year’s ceremonies. In this series of posts, we take a closer look at each of the categories and bring our own sharp-eyed, clinical analysis to the proceedings.
We start with album of the year category. Nominees are
The Invasion- P-Square
Everybody Loves Ice Prince- Ice Prince
Super C Season- Naeto C
Nothing expresses the dismal music year that was the period under review (March 2011- February 2012) better than this sorry state of nominees for album of the year. A category that should be one of the biggest and keenly contested just manages to depress us.
P-Square’s ‘The Invasion’ may have shifted a gazillion units but it is the pop duo’s weakest effort in years and certainly lacks any real staying power- long or short term. Ditto Ice Prince’s ‘E.L.I’ which with it’s weak flow and bland set of songs, emerged the most disappointing album from the Choc City group yet. Wizkid’s ‘Superstar’ is another massive seller but his saccharine tongued, heavily autotuned delivery does not hold up anywhere beyond teen pop circles.
Which leaves us with ‘Super C Season’. Naeto C’s sophomore effort,- post-Msc degree was one of the better reviewed discs of the year and may be the safest option of all the nominees, however the February release date makes it so ancient by now, it is a wonder the organizers included it in the period under review. February isn’t the same as March 2011 however close they may be.
What should have been nominated
There seems to have been a conscious effort by the organizers (we don’t want to hear about a committee) to ignore the best albums of the year. Bez’s ‘Supersun’ was strangely bypassed, Timi Dakolo’s ‘Beautiful noise’ was not deemed good enough by the Headies team, Yinka Davies’ double disc ‘Black Chiffon’ must have been released in another planet and Etcetera’s ‘Yes I am’ was criminally overlooked. Folk singer 9ice’s double disc ‘Bashorun Gaa’ and ‘Versus’ together constituted one of the year’s most original and ingenious albums and certainly deserved a nomination at least. Sadly these gems were ignored for mediocre commercial fare.
This may or may not be entirely the fault of the organizers, (apparently, there was a call for entries)and they have to make the most of what is available to them but parading a set of nominees like this does not do much to boost the awards’ credibility.
What should win
No matter how dull the game is, a winner must emerge and in an ideal world, ‘Super C Season’ has the advantage over the others based on quality of the music.
What will win
Wizkid has been on a roll at award shows like this for some time now and it’s easy to see his winning streak continue. His ‘Superstar’ album served as soundtrack to many lives and fueled many awesome parties so it wouldn’t be surprising if he actually does win. If he doesn’t however, then P-Square would fill in nicely. They levied some nepotism/tribalism accusations at the organizers after losing out at the 2008 ceremonies but with their multiple nominations this season, all seems to have been forgiven and what better way to welcome them back to the fold than with a best album win. Not the best reasons to win but hey! We have heard of worse.
Whoever wins though, good music loses out.