Artists hyped over NAMAs 2020 nominations

By Rosalia David

THE organisers of the Namibia Music Awards 2020 recently announced the nominees from among the best of the best in Namibian music over the past year, and artists such as PDK, Rose BLVC, KP Illest and Ethnix topped the list.

Confidente this week spoke to a few musicians who made the cut to find out how they feel and what the nomination means to them.

Hip Hop artist KP Illest, who gained six nominations for his ‘Faith and Favour’, a 13-track album that chronicles the trials and tribulations of his journey, described the nomination as a blessing as he had worked hard throughout the year to deliver his best work.

“I feel very happy for the nominations I got, especially those for my album because I really had put in my all into this album and to be nominated among the five best albums in the country just shows my improvement and growth, so I couldn’t be happier,” he said.

Another artist who is ecstatic over his nomination, is Otjiwarongo-based DJ Castro, who was nominated in the Best House category for his first album, ‘Revolution’ as well as Best Newcomer and Artist of the Year.

“It is still unbelievable for me and my team, I am still shocked because I don’t think this ever happened in history where a Namibian DJ is nominated like that. I am humbled and cannot thank God enough. Just being recognized to be part of the biggest awards in the country is more than enough for me.”

Castro added that he still gets goosebumps every time he remembers that he was nominated in three categories, describing the feeling as having something of a ‘placebo effect’.

The Trio, comprised of Patrick Mwashindange, Dion Auala and Kamtonyo Andreas (PDK), also scooped six nominations with their newly released album, ‘Grateful’ and said they were more than happy as it has never happened before.

“We are grateful, like the album said, at least with six nominations one can walk away with one or two [awards], you never know,” said Patrick.

Speaking to the duo named ‘Ethnix’ about their five nominations, Etjo said, “ We are honoured, happy and grateful. Above all, the nomination to us serves as a token of appreciation and a recognition from the NAMAs and we are beyond ecstatic that our hard work is finally paying off.”

Songstress Adora expressed her enthusiasm, saying she had been in a pool of nominees before but she is now excited and  looking  forward to finding out what the NAMAs 2020 have in store for her this time around.

“Being nominated in the NAMAs is something huge because it is the biggest platform in the country and somehow contributes to one’s brand through publicity while exposing our music to higher grades. I am excited and nervous at the same time,” she said.

Adora further applauded the NAMAs for giving opportunities to upcoming musicians, as well saying that the grand finale surely proves that it is all about talent. “It also shows that there is really not much difference between new artists and the established musicians. We are on the same scale and this year’s awards [show] is indirectly telling us to pull up our socks and remain relevant.

Artists such as Cassidy Karon, Joharetha, and Sally Boss Madam also gained four nods each while Berthold Mbinda, Dixon, DJ Castro, and Sunny Boy earned three nominations each.”

Speaking to an upcoming musician Jona David who is nominated for Best House for the first time, he said he is honored to be selected and never thought he would make the cut.

“NAMAs is unpredictable, it is my first time applying and I am already nominated, even if it is one category, I am very much excited to see what Is going to happen,” he said.

This would be the 10th edition of the NAMAs and the last for MTC before calling it quits, an announcement that was made by Tim Ekandjo, MTC’s chief human capital and corporate affairs officer and chairperson of the NAMAs last year.

NAMAs 2019 Female Artist of the Year Lize Ehlers was nominated for the second time in the ‘Best Female Artist of the Year category and was selected for Artist of the Decade category.

Producers such as Andrew on the Beat, DJ Kboz, Hoppy Mwiya, Sam Niigungo and Solani are also competing against each other. Diop, One Blood, Blossom Queen and Allen Jonathan also got nominated for Soukous Kwasa.

Contacted for a comment, Blossom said she is having the time of her life in Malaysia and was not ready to comment about the NAMAs yet.