AU, AFRIMA Release 5th Awards Nominees List

Public voting to commence Monday, August 27 2018

The globally-anticipated Nominees List for the 5th All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, has been unveiled by the African Union Commission, AUC, and the International Jury of AFRIMA, during a World Media announcement held on Tuesday, August 14, 2018, at the Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

The released nominees list covers the five Regional Categories divided into Female and Male categories as follows: Best Female Artiste in Central Africa; Best Male Artiste in Central Africa; Best Female Artiste in Eastern Africa; Best Male Artiste in Eastern Africa; Best Female Artiste in Northern Africa; Best Male Artiste in Northern Africa; Best Female Artiste in Southern Africa; Best Male Artiste in Southern Africa; Best Female Artiste in Western Africa and Best Male Artiste in Western Africa.

A total of 79 songs made it to the Regional nominees list.
Cameroon takes up four of the eight spots in the category for Best Female Artiste in Central Africa, followed by DRC (2), and Angola (2). In the category for Best Male Artiste in Central Africa, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) takes the lead with five spots followed by Cameroon 2 and Chad 1.

From Eastern Africa, the female category Kenya holds three spots while Uganda takes 2 with Ethiopia, Rwanda and Tanzania occupying one nomination slot respectively. In the male category, Kenya and Tanzania maintain three nominations each Tanzania ties with Ethiopia & Tanzania registering one nomination apiece.

The Algerian female artistes have a lead ahead of their male counterparts as they took four out of the six spots in the category for Best Female Artiste in Northern Africa, with Tunisia and Egypt holding one spot each. The Male category has Moroccan artistes occupying four of the eight spots, Algeria 2, Egypt and Tunisia earning one nomination each.

The Southern African region is dominated by South African artistes both in the male and female categories, with a total of nine spots, followed by Zimbabwe- 3, while Swaziland, Namibia, Malawi, and Zimbabwe take 1 spot each.

The Western region Male category is having great contenders between Nigeria and Ghana. Holding up 4 spots is Nigeria, closely followed by Ghana (3), while Guinea and Cape Verde hold 1 spot each. The Best Female Artiste in the Western region has Nigeria and Ghana in a tie of 2 spots respectively, with Benin (1), Mali (1), Senegal (1), and Cote d’Ivoire (1).

While providing insights into the process by which the entries were reviewed and graded, the spokesperson for the International Jury of AFRIMA and the Programme Director, Cameroon TV and Radio, CRTV, Mr. Robert Ekukole (representing Eastern Africa) explained that tasked with the responsibility of carefully and mindfully sieving through 8,009 entries submitted by African music professionals within the awards validity period of August 1, 2017 to August 1, 2018, “the jury members have no choice but to be thorough and deliberate about their work because we will be doing artistes and creators of these works a great injustice if we don’t accord them the review their works deserves”,
“The AFRIMA Nominees list we arrived at reflects and represents the top-notch creative expressions of music talents and professionals within the relevant regions and validity period. However, we also have a challenge where some artistes failed to enter for the awards and as such missed the opportunity to be evaluated or possibly nominated for AFRIMA”.

The AFRIMA adjudication is carried out electronically via the proprietary AFRIMA Adjudication Software, which was designed by AFRIMA in 2014, has been deployed for use since the 2015 annual adjudication process.

When public voting opens on the AFRIMA website on Monday, August 27, both continental and regional nominees in the 38 AFRIMA award categories will compete against one another for the coveted 23.9 carat gold-plated AFRIMA Trophy. Nominees will now depend on votes from their fans and followers spread across the globe to vote for their songs in an open voting process via the AFRIMA website,

From August 7, when the annual adjudication process began, the 13-man AFRIMA Jury worked painstakingly and tirelessly in assessing and grading the submitted entries which was an astronomical increase of 63% against the 2017 entries received by AFRIMA.

Speaking on the parameters considered by the Jury during the adjudication process, Jury member representing Diaspora (North America), Hadja Kobélé Keita, a music executive with work experience in international music companies like Universal Music Africa and Island Africa, reiterated the AFRIMA objective, which is about rewarding and promoting talents and creativity in Africa.
“AFRIMA has specific guidelines they follow in considering musical works that are nominated yearly, besides these guidelines, we also look out for the quality of works submitted. An artiste’s popularity will not influence the Jury’s verdict, just because an artiste has 100 million views on Youtube does not guarantee making the list, unless such works are produced with high quality and represent the continent properly. Other guidelines the Jury considers are the current trends and market position”, she further explains.

The AFRIMA’s open voting process will occur via the AFRIMA website, Music lovers will be empowered to decide which artiste/song emerges winners of the 23.9 carat gold-plated AFRIMA trophy.

The 5th AFRIMA is scheduled to hold in November 2018, other activities scheduled for the main awards events is the Africa Music Business Roundtable, a combination of musical conference and trade expo where stakeholders in the creative and arts industry come together to discuss the business of music in Africa, also the AFRIMA Music Village, a music concert and cultural festival that accommodates over 40,000 music lovers across the continent who witness live performances from their favourite African artistes.

Ayefele Sues Oyo Govt Over Planned Demolition of His Music House

Popular musician, Yinka Ayefela, has sued the Oyo State Government over the planned demolition of his Music House, a sprawling structure housing his radio station, Fresh FM.

The state government had marked the structure located on the Challenge-Toll Gate road for demolition for allegedly contravening the state ’s planning laws.

But Ayefele had approached an Oyo State High Court sitting in Ibadan seeking to stop the planned demolition.

Ayefele’s counsel, Mr Olayinka Bolanle, in an exparte motion, filed before the court, sought for an order of the court restraining the state government from demolishing the property pending the determination of the suit.

Bolanle also stated that due process was followed in the construction of the structure while relevant approvals were obtained from the state’s departments and agencies associated with land and housing.

Justice I. Yerima, however, ordered the claimant to ensure service of the court process on the respondent and adjourned the case till Monday for the hearing of the exparte motion.

Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin Dies at 76

Aretha Franklin, universally acclaimed as the “Queen of Soul” and one of America’s greatest singers in any style, died Thursday at her home in Detroit, her representative, Gwendolyn Quinn, said. She was 76.

The cause was advanced pancreatic cancer, Ms. Quinn said.

In her indelible late-1960s hits, Ms. Franklin brought the righteous fervor of gospel music to secular songs that were about much more than romance. Hits like “Do Right Woman — Do Right Man,” “Think,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” and “Chain of Fools” defined a modern female archetype: sensual and strong, long-suffering but ultimately indomitable, loving but not to be taken for granted.

When Ms. Franklin sang “Respect,” the Otis Redding song that became her signature, it was never just about how a woman wanted to be greeted by a spouse coming home from work. It was a demand for equality and freedom and a harbinger of feminism, carried by a voice that would accept nothing less.

Ms. Franklin had a grandly celebrated career. She placed more than 100 singles in the Billboard charts, including 17 Top 10 pop singles and 20 No. 1 R&B hits. She received 18 competitive Grammy Awards, along with a lifetime achievement award in 1994. She was the first woman inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, in 1987, its second year. She sang at the inauguration of Barack Obama in 2009, at pre-inauguration concerts for Jimmy Carter in 1977 and Bill Clinton in 1993, and at both the Democratic National Convention and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s funeral in 1968.

Lagos Tourism Commissioner, Ayorinde, Others Attend Humblesmith’s Osinachi Concert

Fast rising singer Ekenedilichukwu Ijemba, otherwise known as Humblesmith hosted his maiden gig tagged Osinachi Concert last Sunday, 12 August.

The event, which was held at the Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, paraded many  other notable artistes. 

The maiden concert, which had the support of the Lagos State government. 

The Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Honourable Steve Ayorinde, his wife, Temitope and the Permanent Secretary, Fola Adeyemi and other dignitaries attended the concert




Banky W Celebrates Parents’ 40th Wedding Anniversary

”Running After You” crooner Banky Wellington is celebrating his parents who are 40 years in marriage and still counting.

Banky who just released his latest song ”Running After You” which is about married people and the journey they go through says:

Do you ever think about the fact that there aren’t too many celebrations of Married life on Music Television? There’s a lot of hooking up and twerking, and a lot of dating, consummating and flirting… and there are a WHOLE lot of proposals-and-wedding day music videos.. but there aren’t too many celebrations of the married life that comes afterwards. We just kind of, focus so much on the wedding day itself, and assume, hope and pray that they lived happily ever after.

In the “Running After U” song, I tried to tell the story of how my wife and I got together. But 24 hours before we shot the video, I decided I wanted to use the video to celebrate the whole journey of marriage.
And so I drastically altered the original casting plans last minute, and called up all my married friends who were in town, to come hang out on set, have some fun together, and celebrate the decision to attempt this thing called life together. The journey of marriage isn’t always easy, but with the right person, every step ends up worth it.
If there’s one thought I’d like for people to take away, it’s that… Nobody’s perfect, but you can be perfect for each other – you just have to find someone worth trying for. Run after her, then run with her, until you conquer “forever” together. And while you attempt to do this, don’t forget to have some fun.

Banky wrote on his page in celebration of Mr and Mrs Wellington:

August 12th marked the 40th anniversary of my parents. Thankful that God kept them together through it all. It’s hard enough finding love in this world. It’s even harder to keep it. Yesterday was a good day.

Happy 40th Anniversary to the original Mr and Mrs Wellington. Somebody shld pls epp me photoshop my own Mrs Wellington inside 😭🤣❤😍😘 Thank you @marybosotu for the awesome pictures

Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin ‘Gravely Ill’ With Cancer – Report

American music legend, Aretha Franklin — who has previously struggled with her health — is very sick.

“She has been ill for a long time,” a longtime friend reveals. “She did not want people to know and she didn’t make it public.”

A source close to the singer spoke to the Associated Press on Monday to confirm that Franklin is “seriously ill,” although they did not provide any additional details as to the severity or the cause of the 76-year-old singer’s illness.

Showbiz 411 reporter Roger Friedman was first to report the singer is “gravely ill,” sharing that Franklin’s family are “asking for prayers and privacy.”

The Queen of Soul’s family also told Local 4 in Detroit that Franklin is “gravely ill.”

“I am so saddened to report that the Queen of Soul and my good friend, Aretha Franklin is gravely ill,” wrote Detroit news anchor Evrod Cassimy. “I spoke with her family members this evening. She is asking for your prayers at this time. I’ll have more details as I’m allowed to release.”

He revealed Monday that Franklin is alert and speaking, tweeting, “Just got a chance to speak to Aretha Franklin. She is resting and surrounded by close friends and family.”

According to another source close to Franklin, those in the singer’s circle were told two weeks ago that “she could go any time” and that her weight was down to 85 lbs., TMZ reported.

Another source also told the outlet that Franklin has been battling cancer, a rumor that has existed for many years, which the singer has previously chosen not to address. “I am not going to even deal with that,” Franklin previously told JET.

Ahead of scheduled concerts in March and April of this year, the singer was forced to cancel the performances under doctor’s orders.

“Aretha Franklin has been ordered by her doctor to stay off the road and rest completely for at least the next two months,” Franklin’s management said in a statement at the time. She is expected to release her next album, entitled A Brand New Me, in November.

Franklin previously announced in February of 2017 that she was retiring from music. “I will be recording, but this will be my last year in concert. This is it,” she told a Detroit TV station, before admitting that she would still take the stage at “some select things.”

Despite her failing health in recent years, Franklin returned to the stage last August for a performance at the Mann Center in Philadelphia, despite noticeable changes in her appearance that caused concern about her well-being. She also sang at the Elton John AIDS Foundation’s Enduring Vision benefit gala in November 2017.

In April 2011, Franklin sat down for an interview with PEOPLE just months after being hospitalized for an unspecified operation. Though she strongly denied having bariatric surgery, the singer — who had lost 85 lbs. at the time— did not directly address the rumors that she had cancer.

“I feel fabulous, really,” she told PEOPLE. “And I’m so thankful to all of the people who said a little prayer for me. People at the check out line in the market were telling me that they prayed for me. It’s amazing how beautiful people can be.”

On Dec. 1, 2010, a vigil was held in Franklin’s hometown of Detroit after it had been announced she was headed to the hospital for unspecified surgery. Only the night before, Franklin was nominated for another Grammy, this time for her duet with Ron Isley, “You’ve Got a Friend.”

By the middle of that month, as news spread from family members that she was suffering from pancreatic cancer, Franklin was recovering at home, and saying she was up and about — and feeling better, too. In January 2011, the Queen went so far as to pronounce the matter resolved.

Franklin also canceled six months of tour dates and personal appearances in November 2010, under doctor’s orders — a sudden announcement that both disappointed and worried her fans, who could see she was not in the best of health.

AFRIMA Receives 8,009 Entries For Its 5th Edition

As AU commends Africa’s Creative Industry for enthusiastic participation
The 5th edition of All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, in partnership with
the African Union Commission, AUC, has received 8,009 songs/videos on its
online portal as entry submission closed at 1159hour (WAT) of August 1,
2018. This year’s submission sets a record as the highest number of
entries from African artistes, music producers, songwriters, Disc Jockeys
(DJs), video directors among others, since the inception of the most
prestigious music event in Africa.
The progress and increase of 63% against the 2017 edition of 4,816 entries
is a positive marker that has elicited satisfaction from the African
Union, the International Committee of AFRIMA as well as the Jury members
Out of the entries received this year, Eastern Africa tops with 45%
followed by Western Africa with 34%.  Southern, Central and Northern
Africa had 13%, 6% and 2% respectively.
Reacting to the development, the Acting Director of Social Affairs, African
Union Commission, Mr. Machacha Shepande, congratulated Africa’s creative
industry sector for participating in the 5th All Africa Music Awards Entry
Submission campaign opened on May 25, 2018.
“The AU commends the creative sector of Africa for participating so well
in the AFRIMA entry submission process which closed on 1st August 2018 and
in ensuring that the music industry remains relevant for the sustainable
growth of Africa’s economy which the African Union (AU) is championing
through the cultural and creative agenda.
The receipt in the All Africa Music Awards platform, this year, of over
8,000 of entries across the five (5) regions of Africa shows clearly the
growth and importance of this continent wide platform in the promotion and
development of the cultural and creative industries on the continent more
specifically the creative industry of music. The significant rise in the
entries has also shown that African talents spread across the continent
are awakening to the call to promote our cultural and creative industry
continentally as well as to the world at large. The continent’s creative
industry can only grow when we give relevant support to our creative
talent and craft.
Thus, the AUC calls upon AU Member States, and other stakeholders in the
music industry to continue supporting its efforts in the development and
promotion of the creative economy sector through the All Africa Music
Awards (AFRIMA) platform and other Pan-African cultural initiatives”, Mr.
Shepande concluded
Similarly, a member of the International Jury of AFRIMA representing
Central Africa, Mr. Bob Ekukole, expressed a poetic insight while lauding
the effort of the African music industry in entering their works for the
annual AFRIMA entry submission process; “The muse of music seems to
happily hover over the hills and valleys of our beautiful continent with
AFRIMA as the fulcrum. With 8,009 entries, it is a resounding believe in
AFRIMA’s vision, dream, growth and acceptability by the African artistes
worldwide to communicate Africa to the rest of the world via art, culture,
music, tourism and entertainment.
The renowned media and music professional who is the Director, TV
Programmes and Production, Cameroon Radio and Television, CRTV, added that
AFRIMA’s persistence in believing in African talents and their aspirations
is yielding a tremendous platform for excellence in music, a source of
inspiration for the African continent’.
The 5th AFRIMA entries submission ended following a window period of May
25 – August 1, 2018 and a validity period that works must be produced and
released within the year under review i.e August 1, 2017 to August 1,
2018. The entries will be screened by the 13-man jury of AFRIMA whose
members are drawn from the five regions of Africa (two each from the
Northern Africa,
Southern African, Eastern Africa, Western Africa and Central Africa) and
one African each represents the Diaspora – Europe and America and a
representative of the African Union in the person of Mrs. Angela Martins
who also is the Head of Culture of the African Union Commission.
The Jury’s task will be a week-long adjudication process from August 7 to
15, 2018 which includes: Screening, Categorising, Grading, Selection and
announcement of nominations into the thirty-eight (38) Regional and
Continental categories of the award that will emerge winners of the AFRIMA
23.9 carat gold plated trophy.
In partnership with the African Union, AFRIMA is set to uphold the strong
presence of African cultural heritage in the international scene, through
its musical creativity and talents, while also stimulating conversations
among Africans and between Africa and the rest of the globe about the
great potentials and values of the African musical and artistic heritage
for the purpose of creating jobs, reducing poverty, calling the attention
of world leaders to Africa and promoting the positive image of Africa to
the world for global competitiveness.
The main events which include AFRIMA Music Village, Africa Music Business
Summit and the 5th AFRIMA Awards will hold in November 2018. These events
will be broadcast live to over 84 countries around the world.

Yeni Kuti Wants Trump To Deport Man Who Deserted Femi’s Band In US

Retired dancer, Yeni Anikulapo-Kuti, has called on President Donald Trump to deport the bassist who allegedly absconded from her brother’s band in the United States of America.

Andrew Aghedo reportedly abandoned Femi Kuti’s Positive Force band 20 minutes before a performance in New York on Sunday.

The disappearance unsettled the band but the other members were eventually able to go ahead with the performance.

Meanwhile, the New York show went on without any visible glitches as guests were thrilled by Femi Kuti and the remaining members of the band.

The show, which was part of the One People, One World tour, was described as the biggest so far in the United States leg of the tour following similarly successful runs in Boston, New Jersey and Toronto.

An obviously disappointed Yeni, who used to dance with the band, could not help but call out the alleged deserter on social media.

In a series of messages posted on Instagram, the 57-year-old known as YK Power called Aghedo a betrayer and said she hopes Trump deports him back to Nigeria.



Femi Kuti’s Band Member Disappears In US

Afrobeat star, Femi Kuti, has revealed that a member of his band, Aghedo Andrew, disappeared 20 minutes before a performance in the United States of America on Sunday.

In a post to Instagram on Monday, Femi revealed that the show was almost ruined because the bassist was supposed to play with him.

“My bassist Aghedo Andrew nearly ruined my concert yesterday in New York @SummerStage, He disappeared (absconded) 20mins before show time.

“I want to thank the rest of the band for standing strong and giving one of the best shows of the tour.

The 56-year-old musician, however, managed to pull off an electrifying show with the rest of his Positive Force at the Central Park, New York

Femi rendered a number of hit songs which included songs from his recently released 10th studio album, One People, One Worldsuch as, ‘Truth’, ‘Africa 4 Africa’, ‘Nothing to Show For It’, ‘Evil People’, and ‘Corruption Na Stealing’.

The show marks the sixth concert in Femi’s One People, One World global tour and his performance generated raving reviews from guests.



AIT To Launch Next Best Thing On TV Tomorrow

Unveils Osasu, Ohimai as hosts of ‘The weekend’

Osasu Igbinedion and Ohimai Amaize will on Saturday, July 21, unveil a new TV show, ‘The Weekend’ on African Independent Television (AIT).

The contemporary show is focused on analysing entertainment, lifestyle, and political topics.

The show will air every Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 10am.

The Chairman of DAAR Communications Plc, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, labelled the show the next best thing Nigerians have been waiting for.

He said: “We are very excited about this new brand. We have taken our time to put this together and we are very confident that it will revolutionize breakfast television in Nigeria.

“The show is the next best thing Nigerians have been waiting for as far as weekend television programming is concerned,” Dokpesi said.

Show host and Producer of ‘The Weekend’, Osasu Igbinedion said, “I’m excited for the launch of The Weekend – coming to your screens very soon! It’s going to be epic.”

Ohimai Godwin Amaize, who is making his debut in broadcasting, co-host of ‘The Weekend’ said, “This is a brand-new opportunity to do something fresh and radically different. I’m looking forward to this show. I can’t wait.”