The BET Awards will air tomorrow night (June 26 2016). At first I had wanted to write about what seems like Africa’s need to be recognized by the American music industry but I felt I needed to discuss something a bit more important.
For the past few weeks people have been talking about the category for Best International Act (Africa) and the artists that have been nominated this year. For some reason people have been shocked to learn that MzVee is the only artist nominated from Ghana. Some feel she doesn’t deserve to be on the list. They feel there are other artists that are more worthy of the spot than her. I have even heard people say other (male) artists who don’t even have a record label deal should have been nominated over MzVee to represent Ghana.
I disagree. It’s about time a woman from the music industry in Ghana was nominated and MzVee is a great choice.
MzVee didn’t just enter the industry yesterday, she started out in the girl group D3. They had a song Good Girls Gone Bad. The song was ok, but forgettable. MzVee on the other hand stood out in the group as the lead singer who sang in a Dancehall style.
When the group broke up MzVee went solo and came out with her first song Borkor Borkor. The video and song were great for a debut. Since then MzVee hasn’t stopped making music and collaborating with other artists in the industry. She has two albums to her name since going solo. Her sound and look are unique. She is versatile and able to sing and collaborate with a variety of people.
For MzVee to have been nominated in this category means she and her team worked very hard to prove that she deserved to be there.
The Ghanaian music industry is saturated with male artists, many who should not even be doing music. The number of women working and succeeding at music in Ghana is small in comparison. To be a woman and be in the industry you have to work twice as hard and put out amazing content in the form of songs and videos to get half the recognition. A female artist can’t have a video where it’s her and 10 of her friends standing around with drinks in their hand while girls twerk in a corner.
MzVee’s videos are detailed, colourful and always have her looking impeccable. At my last count she had 12 music videos out (and this is not including her features on other people’s songs)
People are acting like this nomination came out of nowhere but she has been nominated for many awards in Ghana and outside the country. Last year she was nominated for Best International New Artist at the BET Awards so it would only be natural for her to move forward into the main category.
We should be proud and embrace the fact that MzVee has been nominated instead of doubting her music ability and the hard work she has put in to get her name out there to a wider audience. I wish her all the best tomorrow night.
Other artists in the catergory with her are Wizkid (Nigeria), Yemi Alade (Nigeria), Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania), Serge Beynaud (Cote D’Ivoire), AKA (South Africa), Black Coffee (South Africa) and Cassper Nyovest (South Africa).