Saturday, October 3, 2009


I've been thinking: maybe we should suggest a change of name for the organizers of MOBO. That is, from MOBO to MONO.

Yeah, instead of Music Of Black Origin, it should now be known as Music Of Nigerian Origin. Or how else would you reward the undisputable fact that Nigerian music and artistes are the hottest commodities from Africa today?...Okay, just kidding!

But, it is noteworthy that Nigerian artistes have been dominating MOBO for the past three years. First it was Tuface, then 9ice swept MOBO Best African Act, now it is our very own NNEKA as MOBO Best African Act 2009! The 2009 edition was held in Glasgow, UK.

Abegi, everybody give Naija people three Gbosas jare... Gbosa! Gbosa!! Gbosa!!!

Nneka’s musical influences include Afro-beat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Bob Marley and Lauryn Hill. She also cites writer and human rights activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa as an inspiration. Just before she travelled to attend the MOBO awards in the UK, the singer and song writer told me about her musical influences. ‘They express themselves in a very simple manner,” she said. Nneka is obviously a gifted artiste with a lot of musical depth. Her gritty style, haunting voice and political lyrics have already won her a worldwide audience.

"I hadn't even heard of the MOBOs until two weeks ago," said the 27-year-old, who described herself as a daughter of the Niger Delta region. Born and bred in Warri, Nneka is a study of the sheer power of determination to succeed. She has beauty, brains, brawn, and an amazing talent. One of her songs, "Heartbeat", has also been nominated for Channel O Awards in the following categories: Most Gifted FEMALE VIDEO/Most Gifted NEWCOMER VIDEO/Most Gifted WEST AFRICAN VIDEO. Watch out for that too. One thing looks certain though, the world is going to hear a lot more from this gifted and beautiful Nigerian artiste (she also paints).

"It will help more people hear about my music,” she said about her winning the MOBO award. “But it's not about me it's the continent and its music." Amazing. No matter where a diamond is, it would always shine through to farther places. And there is no bigger stage than a global audience for Nneka to shine through.

Despite her mixed parentage, German/Nigerian, Nneka is passionate about Nigeria as her motherland. “If you’re not proud of where you’re coming from or who you are as a person, how would you expect someone else to be?” She said to me earlier, just before she left for the MOBO Awards. Nneka’s albums include Victim of Truth (2005) and No Longer at Ease (2008).

Once again, Congratulations, Nneka! Keep representing Naija at the top and making us proud!


Best African Act - Nneka

Best UK Act - N-Dubz

Best Newcomer - JLS

Best Song - Beat Again by JLS

Best Album - N-Dubz

Best DJ - Trevor Nelson

Best Hip Hop - Chipmunk

Best R&B - Keri Hilson

Best International Performer - Beyonce

Best Video - Beyonce, Single Ladies

Best Reggae - Sean Paul

Best Jazz - Yolanda Brown

Best Gospel - Vic Tizzle

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