Preparations for the 2011 SALAX Awards are on a higher gear as Ikirezi Group Ltd, the official organisers of the music awards announced the nominees for the awards ceremony slated for January 31, at Petit Stade in Remera, Kigali City.
Initially, it was planned that this year’s awards would include a Diaspora segment to the categories with awards for the Male/Female Diaspora artiste. However, the segment was excluded on the last minute which triggered anger among some Rwandan artists in the Diaspora.
The nominations were carried out by showbiz journalists from various media institutions in the country. Some Rwandan artists living in the Diaspora expressed their discontent towards organizers of the annual event by creating a discussion on their facebook walls asking why they missed out on the list of nominees.
Dada Cross who lives in Minneapolis, Minesota is among Rwandan artists living in the Diaspora who was angered by the decision. On her facebook wall, she wrote:
“We work hard by writing and producing songs day and night for our fans in Rwanda. Why don’t they value our efforts? I was really irritated by the decision. This year’s edition without a single Diaspora artist is meaningless. They should organize another meeting so that we can also be included. We are many, for example Lil P, Rick Boss, Paf K, myself ofcourse, Jayels and many others. But they decided to ignore us and undervalue our efforts. This is not fair to us. I have to say this”.
Dada Cross has released a new song called ‘Riderman’ which created debate among music lovers in Rwanda questioning whether Dada is in a love affair with Rwanda’s HipHop artist Riderman who recently also released a new song called Facebook. Riderman clarified saying that the reports and speculations are false.
Mike Karangwa, the Chairman of Ikirezi Group Ltd explained that it was important for showbiz journalists to conduct the nominations as they are well conversant with the artistes.
Reacting to the grievances raised by Rwandan artists in the Diaspora, Karangwa said:
“We were not able to include them among the nominees as planned before. In our meeting with showbiz journalists in Rwanda, we found out that there were no tangible music achievements realized by artists in the Diaspora which would qualify them to this year’s Awards”.
Some of the criteria for selecting a nominee were as follows: the artiste/group must be Rwandan, whose studio work was produced between January1— December 2011; their songs must not have featured in the previous editions.
SALAX Awards are intended to honour the most successful artists in Rwanda’s music industry.
Male Artiste of the Year
Female Artiste of the Year
Group of the Year
Hip-hop Artiste of the Year
Afrobeat Artiste of the Year
R&B/Pop Artiste of the Year
Upcoming Artiste of the Year
Gospel Artiste of the Year
The Blessed Sisters
Audio Producer of the Year
Lick lick (Unlimitted Records & The Focus Production)
Clement Ishimwe (Kina Music)
Junior (Line-Up Studio & Bridge Records)
Pastor P (Narrow Road Studio & Rafiki Records)
Video Director of the Year
Bernard (The Zone)
Gilbert K. (The Benjamins)
Arnauld (Arnold Films)
Meddy Saleh (Press it)
Song of the Year
“Aho ruzingiye” by Kamishi
“Bella” by Dream Boys feat. Kitoko
“Mumutashye” by Dream Boys feat. Jay Polly
“Twanze gutoberwa amateka” by Kizito Mihigo
Traditional Artiste of the Year
Best Video Clip of the Year
“Warambeshye” by Kamishi
“Umfatiye runini” by Urban Boys
“Bella” by Dream Boys feat Kitoko
“Inshuti” by Danny feat Knowles
Album of the Year
“Umuvandimwe” by King James
“Umugabirwa” by Kamishi
“Igicaniro” by Rider Man
“Iwacu” by Jay Polly.