What does this year’s Headies say about the state of the Nigerian Music Scene?

The full nomination lists have just been made available for the 13th HEADIES Awards ceremony that will be taking place on the 19th of October at the Eko Convention Centre, Victoria Island Lagos. It was revealed that only musical works released within January 2018 and June 2019 was considered for this year’s award show.

So in review, I will be revisiting last year’s nomination list in comparison to this year’s list. The aim is to simply verify if there has actually been a detectable atmosphere of growth within the Nigerian music scene since that time.

BEST RECORDING OF THE YEAR

A non-voting category for the best recording (that meets the judges’ requirements of excellence; songwriting, production, rendition) by an artiste or group in the year under review.

  1. Adekunle Gold – Ire
  2. Patoranking – Heal D World
  3. Brymo – Olanrewaju
  4. Teni – Uyo Meyo
  5. Burna Boy – Ye

Butterflies – Omawumi
Halleluyah – Funbi
Ponmile– Reminisce
Heaven – Banky W
Joromi – Simi (Winner)

The nominations for this year’s category for best recording looks more competitive compared to last year’s nominations. Take out Joromi which won last year and replace it with each song nominated at this year’s headies and they stand a solid chance at emerging as winner.

BEST POP SINGLE

A category for the best pop single in year under review (by single individual or group).

  1. ‘Ye’- Burna Boy
  2. ‘Wetin We Gain’- Victor AD
  3. ‘Fake Love’– Starboy ft Duncan Mighty, Wizkid
  4. ‘Case’ – Teni
  5. ‘Jealous’ – Fireboy DML
  6. ‘Baby’ – Joeboy

Mad Over You – Runtown
All Over – Tiwa Savage
Yeba – Kiss Daniel
Iskaba – Wande Coal and DJ Tunez
If– Davido (Winner)
Fia – Davido

The two Davido tracks nominated in this category last year are classics and they stand heads and shoulders above the rest of the nominations, so I think if it was released this year it would still make a good claim at winning regardless of the competition. But unlike last year the competition is firmer this year and it would not be totally ridiculous if Davido hypothetically did not end up winning it if they were both released in the year under review at the 13th Headies. Therefore again the nominations in this category indicates an improved overall atmosphere in the Nigerian music scene.

PRODUCER OF THE YEAR

An individual responsible for producing the most acclaimed song or album in the year under review.

  1. Phantom – ‘Ye’ by Burna Boy
  2. Ozedikus – ‘Dumebi’ by Rema
  3. Spellz – ‘Askamaya’ by Teni
  4. Killertunes – ‘Fake Love’ by Starboy featuring Duncan Mighty and Wizkid
  5. Kel-P Vibes – ‘Killing Dem’ by Burna Boy featuring Zlatan

(Fall, Mama) Kidominant (Winner)
(Iskaba, Malo) Spellz
(If, Rara) Tekno
(Maradona, Come Closer) Sarz
(Yawa, Virtuous Woman)– Masterkraft

BEST RAP ALBUM

A non-voting category for the best album by a rap artiste or group in year under review.

  1. ‘Moral Instruction’ – Falz
  2. ‘Crown’– AQ and Loose Kaynon
  3. ‘A Study On Self Worth: Yxng Dxnzl’ – M.I Abaga
  4. ‘Clone Wars, Vol. IV (These Buhari Times)’– Show Dem Camp

27 – Falz
Trip To The South – Erigga
El Hadj – Reminisce (Winner)
The Playmaker – Phyno
The Glory – Olamide
Rose – AQ

Well, the rap industry is in a very questionable state at the moment and it reflects largely on the nominations this year compared to last year. It is the first one so far that a clear improvement might be difficult to cite.

BEST R&B/ POP ALBUM

A category for the best r&b/pop album in the year under review (by single individual or group).

  1. rare. – Odunsi (The Engine)
  2. Outside – Burna Boy
  3. No Bad Songz – Kizz Daniel
  4. Mayor of Lagos – Mayorkun
  5. About 30 – Adekunle Gold

Sounds From The Other Side – Wizkid (Winner)
Timeless – Omawumi
Simisola – Simi
GOLD – Adekunle Gold
Ijele The Traveller – Flavour
This Is Me – Niniola

Here again, the growth is evident, the albums nominated this year’s award records growth in the artists and in turn the naija RnB/pop scene.

BEST MUSIC VIDEO

A voting category for the best conceptualist, best directed and most exciting video in the year under review. This award goes to the video director.

  1. ‘Dangote’ (Burna Boy) – Clarence Peters
  2. ‘Available’(Patoranking) – Clarence Peters
  3. Ire’ (Adekunle Gold) – Aje Films
  4. ‘Talk’ (Falz) – Prodigeezy
  5. ‘Jaiye’ (Ladipoe) – 88 Factor

Ma Lo – Tiwa Savage Ft Wizkid (Meji Alabi)
Focus– Humblesmith (Clarence Peters)
Come Closer – Wizkid (Daps) [Winner]
Been Calling – Maleek Berry (Meji Alabi)
Yolo – Seyi Shay (Meji Alabi)
Like Dat – Davido (Daps)

I would say that this year’s nominations don’t quite live up the quality of videos that were nominated in the same category last year.

BEST R&B SINGLE

A category for the best r&b single in the year under review (by a single individual or group).

  1. Tipsy’ – Odunsi ft. RAYE
  2. ‘Serenade’ – Funbi
  3. Uyo Meyo – Teni
  4. ‘Wishes and Butterflies’ – Wurld
  5. ‘Gimme Love’ – Seyi Shay featuring Runtown

Tonight – Nonso Amadi
Folashade – Praiz
Let Me Know – Maleek Berry
Romeo & Juliet – Johnny Drille
Love You Baby – Banky W
Smile For Me – Simi (Winner)

 

BEST COLLABO

A voting category for the best r&b, pop or hip-hop collaborative track (including cameos).

  1. ‘Like’ – Reekado Banks featuring Tiwa Savage, Fiokee
  2. ‘One Ticket’ – Kiss Daniel featuring Davido
  3. ‘Fake Love’ – Starboy featuring Duncan Mighty, Wizkid
  4. Killin’ Dem’– Burna Boy featuring Zlatan
  5. ‘Amaka’– 2baba featuring Peruzzi

Ma Lo – Tiwa Savage ft Wizkid (Winner)
Temper Remix – Skales ft Burna Boy
Juice – Ycee ft Maleek Berry
No Forget – Adekunle Gold ft Simi
Come Closer – Wizkid ft. Drake

NEXT RATED

This category is a voting category for the most promising act in the year under review.

  1. Rema
  2. Joeboy
  3. Fireboy DML
  4. Victor AD
  5. Lyta
  6. Zlatan

Maleek Berry
Mayorkun (Winner)
Dice Ailes
Johnny Drille
Zoro

LYRICIST ON THE ROLL

A non-voting category for the rap artiste with the best lyrical depth and performance on a single song or album.

  1. YCEE – ‘Balance’
  2. Boogey – ‘Implode’
  3. Paybac – ‘Implode’
  4. Ghost – ‘Crown’
  5. Tec –‘Crown’
  6. AQ – ‘Crown’

You Rappers Should Fix Up Your Lives – MI (Winner)
Political Science – AQ
Liquor Night– Boogey
Industry Nite – Erigga

 BEST STREET-HOP ARTISTE

A voting category for the artiste whose songs are inspired by the streets. Such song should captain lingua, which may also be originated by the artiste and popular on the street.

  1. Erigga – ‘Motivation’
  2. Chinko Ekun – ‘Able God’
  3. Zlatan – ‘Leg Work’
  4. Barry Jhay – ‘Aiye’
  5. Lyta – ‘Time’

Penalty – Small Doctor (Winner)
Wo – Olamide
Sai Baba – CDQ
Shekpeteri – Idowest ft Dammy Krane, Slim Case
Pass The Agbara – Skuki
Legbegbe – Mr. Real ft Idowest, Kelvin Chuks, Obadice

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

A non-voting category for the best album (solo or group) in year under review, that meets judges’ requirements of excellence (songwriting, production, rendition and impact).

  1. About 30 – Adekunle Gold
  2. Outside – Burna Boy
  3. Moral Instruction – Falz
  4. No Bad Songz – Kizz Daniel

Simisola – Simi (Winner)
GOLD – Adekunle Gold
Klitoris – Brymo
Ijele The Traveller – Flavour
Sounds From The Other Side – Wizkid
The Playmaker – Phyno

  ARTISTE OF THE YEAR

Most critically and commercially adjudged artiste in the year under review. Overall most successful artiste in the year under review.

  1. Burna Boy
  2. Wizkid
  3. Davido
  4. Tiwa Savage
  5. Falz

Davido (Winner)
Wizkid
Olamide
Simi
Tiwa Savage

SONG OF THE YEAR

A voting category for the most popular song in the year under review.

  1. Ye’ Burna Boy 
  2. ‘Dumebi’ Rema
  3. ‘Wetin We Gain’ – Victor AD
  4. ‘Fake Love’Starboy ft Duncan Mighty, Wizkid
  5. Case’Teni
  6. ‘Leg work’ Zlatan
  7. ‘Baby’Joeboy
  8. Jealous’ – Fireboy DML

Penalty – Small Doctor
Wo – Olamide
If– Davido (Winner)
Yeba – Kiss Daniel
Mad Over You – Runtown
Fia – Davido

ROOKIE OF THE YEAR

A voting category for the rookie of the year who has had a successful year musically, with the absence of an album in the year under review.

  1. Crayon
  2. Buju
  3. Barry Jhay
  4. Oxlade

Kidi
Air Boy
Teni (Winner)
Junior Boy
Peruzzi

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