VGMA – We still don’t get the basics

There have been lots of reviews on the awards and this here is mine. I must say though that after 15 years we still run the music awards as though it was the first time. Too many basic errors are made and just when I felt we were going to build upon last year’s, we slumped again and moved back into marking time mood. Yes, Charterhouse has put in a lot of work but that doesn’t mean we should applaud them just yet, especially when the mistakes keep recurring.

I am just a regular chap who had a TV and watched the awards from my bed but I wasn’t too happy with this year’s music awards and this is why.


When I first saw the promotion that said 20 top local acts and 3 international acts under one roof I got worried. The umbrella event is the Ghana Music Awards Festival. Before the climax last Saturday night/Sunday dawn, there had been the nominees jam, and the industry awards night. So what we were scheduled to have was an awards night. You know, the night where you reveal who has won what and hand them their glass or wooden plaques and all? I think we had a concert instead of an awards night because there were simply too many performers on the night. Worse, they didn’t seem to have received this memo as they didn’t seem to perform within the alloted time. All we needed was about 5 or 6 really top acts who had proven over time to have the niche for the big event. You do not try your luck on a nite like that. But what we had was a pool of artists, some of whom didn’t seem prepared. Will return to this in a bit.


The myriad of artists and what seemed the free hand to be on stage for hours on end meant that the event that had started late – as always – will drag on for one and two and three and four and five and six and seven hours. I know buying airtime for a live event is expensive. Yes I know Charterhouse own a TV station so may choose not to count the cost of showing the event as part of their operational cost. But BET owns a station too and none of their many awards ever goes beyond 3 hours. Or I lie? There was no reason why we had to sit through a 7 hour event.

That must stop. We have for years run this for hours on end but chale that must stop.


The issue of time is one that worries me a lot. We seem to have accepted the sad situation that when a Ghanaian event is scheduled for X time, it will start 3 hours later. I suppose tickets had start times on them; invited guests were also told when gates will open and when they should be seated. Organisers also had a year to prepare for the show.

Now how about this:

Charterhouse gets bold and starts the show at the advertised time even if our almighty celebrities are yet to take a shower from home. The music awards is one of those shows everyone who feels he is somebody wants to attend. So the audience wants to be there. Now imagine some celeb getting ready to enter a shower and sees on TV that the show is on. if event organisers do not learn how to instil discipline in audiences they won’t learn. Of course we are in deeper trouble if Charterhouse themselves cannot be ready.

Yes we all keep complaining about why the show runs that late but I think part of the blame is on audiences setting their own time.


Undoubtedly the loudest and biggest artist over the last calendar year was Shatta Wale. It’s been relatively easy to predict the ultimate winner of the awards over the last few years. So having the biggest act missing from the showpiece was a huge disappointment. Shatta has claimed that he charged organisers 70K and they ‘refused to pay’ in his own words – as though he had the birthright to demand and get whatever he wanted. I am not getting into the matter of who was offered what and who refused what. But I know having him missing from the event took some shine off the event.


As far as I am concerned Davido is one of the most talented artists I know and though he doesn’t necessarily need the dough, he is nonetheless basking in massive success and riches right now. But dude is horrendous when it comes to performances. He was terrible, lip synced a lot and what he succeeded to do was to jump around holding his crotch. Somebody please tell him that he had better up his game in the onstage category or miss out on a lot of things.

Inyana too was very average and somehow he thought the audience was going to cheer him on after doing that to Auntie Lizzy, sorry I meant Sister Yvonne Nelson. I frankly don’t think we must necessarily have a Naija act all the time. I recall Wizkid flopping last year as well.


The KOD I know wasn’t the KOD I saw this year. He seemed disinterested and to me I didn’t quite feel him. Then he kept in making basic errors like ‘keep voting’ even after KPMG had handed him the final results. He says on my wall that he was following a script. Script was wrong then and it means someone at Charterhouse failed to do his or her work properly. I have seen KOD handle various shows and to me he is on my top 5 MCs in Ghana but on this night, he didn’t do it for me. Usually he would have had all of us liking and cheering the selfie thingy for example but this time out, because I think he wasn’t himself the prelude to the selfie was flawed and we ended up asking “what was the point?”.

I have often been accused of going too hard on people that we believe are supposedly trying to do away with their beautiful African skin in a bid to look Caucasian. She managed to attract a little more nicknames than the famous Accra Great Olympics Football Club. Check this out;

Eazzy broni
Eazzy Rosalinda
Eazzy Marie Cruz
Eazzy Olympics
Eazzy Mashie
Eazzy Nkonsonkonson
Eazzy Ayitey Powers
Eazzy co equal
Eazzy platform
Eazzy Tweeeeaaa
Eazzy VGMA
Eazzy Michael Jackson
Eazzy Deluxe Paintey
Eazzy Brazil 2014
Eazzy Vybz Kartel

And the list goes on. May be make up was too much, may be lighting was too much. May be everything was too much. End of the day though, her look and performance as MC was very average and she added nothing on the night. But hey, she’s an artist so we can forgive her and take it like that.

How long are we going to be ‘taking things like that’?


I have touched on this a bit already. Really, why do we need 23 artists to perform at an awards night? I have said before that if we want to name it Ghana Music Awards Concert then let is do so. On the night, some of our artists didn’t seem to have been ready. Perhaps with the exception of Sarkodie and Sonnie Badu I am not sure any of them delivered well enough. Yes they were alright but for a night such as this they owed it to themselves and their fans to go beyond average performances. Ladies and gentlemen this is the Ghana Music Awards. It is a big deal. It should not be treated anyhow.


We repeated the disco lights from last year. Yes we know we do not have the ideal venue for an event like this but this is surely not the best way to use what we have. Lighting was terrible and seemed inappropriate most of the time.

Same goes for sound. My TV is not spoilt and judging from social media comments, sound was indeed poor especially at the start of the show. I am tempted to see these things happen but then I do not want to justify mediocrity.


I was relieved not to have seen somebody on the red carpet with a mic. Amanda and Black Boy did good but again, I wondered if it didn’t drag too much and whether all those who turned up there had to be there.


There’s something wrong with that phrase. Anyway, some people looked adorable in what they wore and others seemed to have forgotten where they were going. I don’t know why one of my favourite highlife artists cane there wearing boots and shorts and a jacket but someone says he was on point. I disagree. But then I am not the fashion police.

***to be continued***

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