The nominees for the 11th edition of Groove Awards were unveiled Tuesday, April 26 at the Kenya National Theatre in Nairobi.
The event’s big surprise is the conspicuous absence of the names of gospel bigwigs Bahati and Willy Paul in the list of nominees.
Bahati did not show up at the event. Willy Paul on the other hand, attended the ceremony at KNT, but left in a huff once the full nominees’ list was unveiled.
This came as a shocker to many attendees as they could be heard discussing in hushed tones the noticeable exclusion of Willy Paul and Bahati from the Groove Awards 2016 nominees’ list.
Last year June, Bahati was the biggest winner of the annual feting ceremony when he bagged four awards – instantly making him the ultimate gospel celebrity of 2015.
Bahati’s hit song Barua proved to be a charmer in 2015, bagging the singer three of the four awards he received in total.
Barua won in the Video of the Year, Song of the Year and Most Downloaded Skiza Tune categories. In addition to the three Bahati also took home the Male Artist of the Year award.
His gospel nemesis Willy Paul walked home empty-handed in all the categories he was nominated in. Bahati’s spectacular win fuelled the then already-existing antagonism between the gospel pair.
Well, the tale is different this year as neither Bahati nor Willy Paul will have the platform to prove who runs the show.
Groove Awards organizers ostensibly reached the decision not to feature the pair in 2016 Groove Awards after Bahati and Willy Paul spent a better part of their second half of 2015 antagonizing each other – an example that obviously isn’t Christian in nature. Perhaps the two will feature in the nominations list of 2017 after they completely bury the hatchet.
The following are three categories that Bahati won in last year, but will not be able to defend the accolades this year; since he was not nominated:
Male Artiste of the Year: Daddy Owen, Eko Dydda, Guardian Angel, JFAM, Ljay Maasai and Pitson.
Song of the Year: Afadhali Yesu-Size 8, Ndio Yako-Gloria Muliro, Ngori-Kelele Takatifu, Niache Niimbe-Pitson, Nikupendeze-Mercy Masika and Vanity-Daddy Owen
Video of the Year: 5 Stones-Recapp, Afadhali Yesu-Size 8, Haina Budi-Eko Dydda, Natamani Nikuone-Laura Karwira, Roho Wako-Janet Otieno and Vanity-Daddy Owen.