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Still On The Headies’ Next Rated Award Category.

Mr. Ayo Animashaun and his team at Smooth Promotions are known for pushing the envelopes. Before his Hip Hop World Magazine; the Ikebe Super, Prime People and Classique were the entertainment publications of the good old days but something was missing, none of the above magazines reflected hip hop, a genre of urban music that is shaping the world today. Ayo Animashaun was visionary with his magazine, the man pioneered hip hop publication in Nigeria. Hip Hop World Magazine inspired Bubbles, Phat, Blast and a host of others.

Musical video countdown and Talk shows with average sets were the heights of entertainment contents for television in this country until Ayo once again debuted Hip on TV, a magazine program on national television. The production and packaging distinctly presented Hip on TV as a true break from the norm. Other shows like Dynamic on TV followed Ayo Animashaun’s innovation.

For those of us who study the entertainment scene in Nigeria, Hip Hop World Awards now known as Headies without a doubt has been one of the best platforms to honour musical excellence in the country. Most of the music players usually say Headies is Nigerian’s Grammy. But with the reactions that trailed the choice of winner of the Next Rated category during the 10th edition of the Headies, it clearly shows that age does matter; you cannot divorce youthful exuberance from youngsters.

Davido, a former winner of the Headies Next Rated category, had suggested that Lil Kesh should pull a Kanye at the Headies if he does not win in the category, “LIL KESH IS THIS YEARS MVP!!! IF DEM NO GIVE YOU PULL A KANYE ON DEM!!’’ the Aye singer twitted. And behold when Next Rated 2015 Headie Award went to Reekado Banks a scene was created as Lil Kesh’s boss pulled a “Jagaban”. Olamide did not stop there; he took his grievances to twitter. And the social network buzz could be crazy as a lot characters jumped on the bandwagon.

No one will forget @Baddestdjtimmy in a hurry; this twitter user rubbished everything the Headies stood for. The Baddestdjtimmy accused Mr. Ayo of collecting money to influence the choice of awardees, he continued by saying his live telecast of the award looked like NTA channel 10’s production, @Baddestdjtimmy’s tweets were quite harsh. To worsen the situation some blogs credited the tweets to Dj Jimmy Jatts.

The infamous tweet christened “open letter” had to be refuted by the veteran Dj to clear his name from the mess, “The publication on an online blog about DJ Jimmy Jatt writing an open letter to The Headies is quite false, impersonating and unlawful. Never did I write any letter or address those issues, therefore, everyone who has posted wrong information is advised to retract.’’ DJ Jimmy Jatt responded.

But come to think of it, for the whole industry to be talking about the Headies, it shows how relevant the award ceremony is. And it will be wise if the artists who are celebrated by this body do not tarnish the beautiful image and name the organizers had built and created over time through hard work, innovation and determination. Here is a list of the winners of the Next Rated category since inception: Asa(2006), Overdose(2007), Wande Cole(2008), Omawumi(2009), Skuki(2010), Wizkid(2011), Davido(2012), Sean Tizzle(2013), Patoranking(2014), Reekado Banks(2015).

It was in the year 2008 that a brand new car was introduced as part of the trappings that come with the Next Rated Award. Cars are valued in many societies of the world and in ours; a brand new car is a sign of success.

From the list above, only Overdose appears to be on some form of break in the music scene. It must have been difficult for the rapper to compete in this era of indigenous rap music. Even with his hiatus from the scene Overdose is a respected emcee. Skuki is another name from that list, the duo Tumininu and Atewologun Laolu-Ogunniyi known as Skuki had not been able to achieve a major hit ever since their next rated confirmation but they stay visible through musical videos. Apart from Overdose and Skuki, it has been musical blessings on blessings for the rest of the artistes on that list. And with Reekado Banks on Don Jazzy’s corner, chances are Reeky would do just fine.

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