The 13th Annual Metro FM Music Awards were held in Durban at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Conference Centre on Saturday 1 March, 2014. The awards' theme was "Celebrating 20 Years of Beat", and the event had the audience dancing through two decades of South African musical history. The show, produced by the events division of Blue Moon, was a spectacle of never-before seen collaborations showcasing musical diversity, as well as celebrating 20 years of democracy in SA. Viewers at home watched on SABC1 or, for the first time, via a live stream on YouTube. For the second year in a row, comments by fans on Twitter, using the tag #MMA13, saw the event trend globally.
At 20h00 the lights of the Luthuli Conference Centre dimmed, the audience hushed and a host of musicians showed their love and respect for the late Nelson Mandela in a moving tribute. The first live musical collaboration of the evening followed, sweeping the audience off their feet as Zahara, Winnie Khumalo and Team Khaya took to the stage. Fans on Twitter were moved by Zahara's performance, which began with Song for Mandela
, sharing comments such as: "Zahara is performing a special and heart moving tribute to Tata Nelson Mandela." Another comment about Ms Khumalo's performance was, "No one else could perfect a Brenda Fassie song other than Winnie Khumalo!"
The evening's running order was safely in the hands of the much-loved Metro FM DJs and emcees for the evening, Pearl Thusi and Phat Joe. What they wore and their cheeky banter gave the audience all the more reason to continue the tweeting frenzy.
Uniquely crafted performances specifically designed for the #MMA13 event continued throughout the evening and included a musical mash-up from MiCasa that saw them perform their huge hit Jika
, as well as the classic Bongo Maffin track Thathis'gubu
with TKZee's We Love This Place
. Another stand-out musical partnership was between Maskandi "King" Phuzekhemisi and Durban favourites L'vovo and Zakes Bantwini. The performance opened with tap dancers dancing to an instrumental intro of Mdu's TsikiTsikiYo
with Phuzekemisi playing Imbizo
on guitar, ending with Zakes's new track Ghetto
. Metro FM fans loved the different dynamic, sharing tweets like this one: "Bab' Phuzekhemisi's performance at the Metros was ERRRRTHANG hey, still love that song, love his music. True Legend."
The next magical moment in SA musical history came from Da Les and AKA, who did Heaven
together, followed by Dream Team doing Tsekede
and ending off with Ifani who sang Milli
. Asked how Blue Moon managed to bring so many diverse artists together, Director of Events, Deana Heslop-Mthembu, said, "The Metro FM brand is popular and powerful, so musicians are proud to be showcased at the awards. Also, most of the artists we asked to perform understood what the spirit of 'Celebrating 20 Years of Beat'
meant and were keen to do a bit of experimenting and collaborating to show off our musical history."
The final performances certainly took viewers down memory lane as Trompies, Thebe, Mandoza, TKZee, Zola, Unathi, Professor and Big Nuz managed to incorporate favourite Kwaito songs like Jezebel
into one epic performance, asking the audience "Waar was jy?" when each of these tracks were rocking dance floors across the country. One tweeter stated: "The Kwaito legends' performances were the highlight of the night."
The big winners of the evening were Mafikizolo, who scooped three awards for Best Produced Album and Best Pop Album for Reunited
, as well as the coveted Best Group Award. The final showdown before the curtain fell was between DJ Kent, The Arrows, Revolution, Black Motion and Uhuru, who set the stage alight (helped by the lasers and the pyrotechnics) with Spin My World Around
going into Noqatiko
and ending off with Y-Tjukuja
Heslop-Mthembu believes that great teamwork was the basis for the fantastic energy of the show; from Dreamsets doing the stage and lighting, The Project preparing all the AV material and SoulProviders doing social media, to the dedication of the Show Director, Darren Hayward, and, of course, to the Skokona Productions team who were responsible for the live broadcast." Once we had the technical details in place, the spirit of the performers, winners and the passionate MetroFM fans took the event to another level. At one stage, not only was #MMA13 trending globally on Twitter, four other Twitter trends were Rob Byrne, #UHURU, Danny K and Mafikizolo - all part of the show - it was amazing!"
From the beginning of the awards ceremony, with celebrities strutting their stuff on the black carpet, through to the amazing faces giving out the awards, (legends such as Sipho Hostix Mabuse and Randall Abrahams) Blue Moon endeavoured to make the evening an unforgettable experience. Managing Director of Blue Moon, Michelle Caldeira, says she is pleased at the outcome, "I am proud of our team and suppliers. With limited pre-production time they delivered a highly original and entertaining event which did justice to the quality of the MMA13 nominees and winners. The power of partnership, commitment and passion came together, and we were delighted to see firsthand how well received the event was via Metro FM's social media platforms."
13th Annual Metro FM Music Awards Winners:
Best Hip Hop Album: Kwesta for Dakar
Best Male Artist: Culoe De Song for Exodus
Best Collaboration: Uhuru, featuring OSKIDO, Professor & Dr Buks for Y-Tjukuja
Best Compilation Album: DJ Euphonik for For the Love of House Vol. 5
Best Newcomer: Happy for Ahead of Time
Best Styled Artist: Vusi Nova
Best Female Artist: DJ CNDO for Finest Lady of House Vol. 5
Best Urban Jazz Album: Nomfundo for Kusile
Song of the Year: Uhuru for Y-Tjukuja
Best Duo/Group: Mafikizolo for Reunited
Best RnB Album: Danny K for Good Look
Best Dance Album: Heavy K for Respect the Drumboss 2013
Best Produced Album: Mafikizolo for Reunited
Best Music Video: KhuliChana for Mnatebawen
Best African Pop Album: Mafikizolo for Reunited
Best Urban Gospel Album: TakieNdou for Psalmist
Best Kwaito Album: Character for Self Control
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