The 6th edition of All Africa Music Awards, AFRIMA, in partnership with the African Union Commission, AUC, has received 8,157 songs/videos on its online portal as entry submission closed at 1159 hour (WAT) on Friday, August 2, 2019. This year’s submission continues in the record-setting precedent of previous editions amassing the highest number of entries from African artistes, music producers, songwriters, Disc Jockeys (DJs), and video directors among others, since the inception of the biggest music event in Africa.
The 2019 submissions which opened worldwide on May 15 exceeded the 2018 submissions by 148 entries. Of the 8,157 entries submitted this year, Western Africa leads the pack with 38% of the total entries followed by Southern Africa with 24%. Eastern Africa, Central Africa and Northern Africa have 20%, 14% and 4% respectively.
Meanwhile, following the end of the 6th AFRIMA entry submission, the 13-man International Jury of AFRIMA will arrive Lagos, Nigeria on Wednesday, August 7, 2019 for the week-long adjudication process from Wednesday, August 7 to Tuesday, August 13. The AFRIMA Jury’s responsibility involves screening, categorising, assessing, grading and selecting into the 36 different Regional and Continental awarding categories nominees who will vie for the 23.9 carat gold-plated AFRIMA trophy.
AFRIMA hospitality partner, Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria, will provide a secure venue for the eminent International Jury members who represent the five regions of Africa, the Diaspora (Europe and North America) and the African Union Commission.
Guided by transparency and fairness, each of the Jury members will bring their span of experience and professionalism to play and utilize their boundless knowledge of African music, culture, and entertainment, to collectively arrive at artistes and/or recordings on the 6th AFRIMA Nominees’ List that reflect the creative energy and output of African music talents between the music review period of August 1, 2018 to August 2, 2019. After this process is concluded, the 6th AFRIMA Nominees’ List would be unveiled during a World Media Conference scheduled for Wednesday, August 14 at the Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The AFRIMA Jury member occupying one of the slots for Eastern Africa is Tanzania’s Joett, a veteran vocal coach and artiste development manager whose song writing skills earned him registered membership of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP). On the other hand is Tabu Osusa from Kenya. The veteran music professional has spent more than three decades in music production and promotion. He has chaired several musical projects within and outside Kenya.
Representing Central Africa from Democratic Republic of Congo, DRC, is Charles Tabu, a Music Executive, with wide experience in artiste management and promotion. Charles has worked with major record labels across the continent including Sony, Universal and Warner. The second jury member for Central Africa is Bob Ekukole, a renowned Cameroonian media and music professional with 29 years of experience in media and broadcasting. He is currently the Director, TV Programmes and Production, Cameroon Radio and Television, CRTV.
Northern Africa is represented by Omar Essaidi, a Moroccan music programmer and artistic director. He brings to bear his practical experience as judge/juror for several musical contests in Northern Africa.
Zimbabwean radio DJ and Lawyer, Delani Makhalima, takes up one of the two slots for Southern Africa. The entertainment & media executive has also honed his professional experience in song writing and music composition in the region. Filling the other slot is South Africa’s music professional and concert promoter, Chris Syren who is the co-founder and director of Making Music Productions (MMP), a music production company that has played a vital role in music promotion in South Africa.
Western Africa representatives include Olisa Adibua, prolific broadcaster, music executive and talent manager from Nigeria and David Tayorault, a Côte d’Ivoire music legend, whose work in the music industry has influenced the jazz, blues, soul, zouk and Brazilian samba genre in Western Africa countries.
Representing the Diaspora-Europe is Rita Ray, a UK-based BBC Radio 3 presenter, International Music Curator and popular Club DeeJay. Her counterpart representing Diaspora-North America is Hadja Kobélé Keita, a music executive whose career spans experience in Artiste and Repertoire management and Public Relations with Universal Music Africa/Island Africa. The African Union Commission is represented by Angela Martins, the Head, of the Culture Division of the AUC. Mrs. Martins, who is a citizen of Mozambique, is a professional African Culture Analyst and an African music enthusiast.
Speaking on the 2019 entry submission and adjudication process: Mrs. Angela Martins said: “AFRIMA, the Pan-African initiative and music platform is gaining greater momentum, continental visibility and recognition. This can be verified by the increased number of entries received for its 6th Edition, to be held in November 2019.
The African Union Commission congratulations the international Committee of AFRIMA for this achievement for the promotion and development of the continent’s Creative Economy. The Commission would like to once again express its strong support to AFRIMA as it plays a key role in recognising and awarding myriad of music talents on the continent.
In the same vein the AU Commission welcomes and salutes members of the AFRIMA jury who will start the important Adjudication Process on the 7th of August in Lagos, Nigeria. The role of the AFRIMA Jury is Crucial to ensure fairness and transparency of the continental prestigious awards”.
Also reacting to the entries received for the 6th AFRIMA, Central Africa Jury member, Charles Tabu, expressed excitement that more artistes within and outside Africa we getting more involved in AFRIMA submissions.
“Once again, we have proof that the talents coming from the Diaspora and from the continent have taken over AFRIMA. It is their platform, their awards and AFRIMA is all about rewarding Africa. As an AFRIMA jury member and an African music professional, I am so proud and amazed to see the number of entries in 2019 surpasses what we had in 2018. This a huge improvement from the 2,025 entries received in the first edition of the awards in 2014. I am waiting to see the quality, creativity and surprise talents we will discover during the adjudication in Lagos”.
In partnership with the African Union, the awards recognising and rewarding musical creativity and talents of Africans is scheduled to hold in November 2019 during a four-day fiesta of music, glamour, Afrocentricism and entertainment in the official awards Host City.
The four-day AFRIMA event commences with the Welcome Soiree followed by the AFRIMA Music Village, the Host City Tour, the Africa Music Business Summit, the exclusive Nominees Party and concludes with the live Awards Ceremony. Fans of African music globally can follow along and take part in the AFRIMA 2019 events on social media, live stream on the AFRIMA website, the AFRIMA App and by tuning to over 84 television stations which are AFRIMA partners.