Leading musician JK and gospel artistes Abel Chungu and Israel, formerly Exile, are leading nominations in the Zambian Breweries-sponsored Mosi Zambian Music Awards (ZMA) to be held on April 11 this year, with three nods each.
JK has been nominated for Best Mainstream Artiste and Best Dancehall Album and Best Mainstream Album for his Telemundo effort, while Abel is competing for Best Gospel Male Artiste as well Best Gospel Album and Best RnB Album for Love Unleashed. Israel is a finalist for Best Songwriter, Best Gospel Male Artiste and Best Gospel Album Exile to Israel.
There are also nominations for the likes of P-Jay (Best Songwriter), Mampi (Best Female Artiste), Suwilanji (Best Gospel Female Artiste) and Roberto (Best Mainstream Album).
But obviously, questions will be asked about categorization, particularly for such categories as Best Live Album and also in the Best Dancehall category, where JK – who is definitely not a dancehall artiste nor is his album Telemundo – has been nominated.
Also, the likes of Roberto will probably feel disappointed that he is not nominated for Best RnB Album after his Amarulah did so well. The argument will be that they are popular awards.
Otherwise, some categories like Best Hip-hop, which is one of the fiercely contested for, has not been announced. The finalists will be announced on the awards night, yet voting opened on Friday.
Anyhow, other nominees are: Best Traditional Music Album comprising Malizu by Tasila Mwale and Chachacha Oyamba by Matthew Tembo; Best Live Album (Moments of Truth by Afro Red, Chachacha Oyamba by Matthew Tembo and Muli Yesu by Northmead Assemblies of God); Best Sound Engineer (Ringman, Ben Blazer and Brian Mission Press); Best Studio Sound Producer (Ben Blazer, Jerry Fingaz and Magg44); Best Lead Guitarist (David Kasochi, Jerry Fingaz and Sheba Chintu) and Best Keyboard Player (Lazaras Zulu, Mutamula Mwale and Samuel Nyambe).
Best Drummer has Charlie Chax, Eston Mwape and Smith Phiri; Best Traditional Indigenous Instrument (Rodrick Mungala, Grace Ngándu and Moses Muchindu); Best Songwriter (Israel, Mulenga Kabaso and P-Jay); Best Zed Beats Album (My Nyopola by Wills and Pupwe Chulu by Stain Da Industry); Best Gospel Album (Love Unleashed by Abel, Exile to Israel by Israel and Ulukombo Lwamweo by Suwilanji); Best Mainstream Album (Telemundo by JK, Time Bomb by T-Sean and Heart of a Lion by Chef 187) and Best Female Gospel Artiste (Stay Zimba, Rachael Nanyangwe and Suwilanji).
Best Gospel Male Artiste has Abel Chungu, Israel and Pompi; Best Mainstream Male Artiste (JK, Roberto and Chef 187); Best Mainstream Female Artiste (Mampi, Scarlet and Brisky); Best RnB album (Love Unleashed by Abel, Nafika by F-Jay and Zimandola by Stain Da Industry); Best Reggae Album (Bouncing Ball by Peter Bob, Freedom by Chris Aka and The Teacher by Milz).
Best Dancehall Album (Five Star by General Ozzy, Telemundo by JK and Time Bomb by T-Sean) and Best Kalindula Album (Amalango by Gina Hidie, Ndevu by Liseli Sisters and Abakali Bakali by Sansamukeni).
For Best Collaboration, there is Kumalila Ng’oma by Chef 187 and Afunika, Alangizi by Kantu and Slap D and Basazibe by Mampi and Judy; Best Choral Album (Wileka Umuntu by Busokololo, Amakwebo by Great Chronciles and Pa Lupili by Mt Sinai).
The Best New Artiste category has Kantu Siachingili, Wills and Urban Hype; Song of the Year (Belinda Nafwa by Chester, Mama Rebecca by Macky II and Kalilole by Cleo Boy; and Best Band has Amayenge, Uncle Rex and band, and Elect Band.