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NO-SHOWS HIT HAPILOS DIGITAL MUSIC AWARDS!

BY BRIAN BONITTO—
Associate Editor
Auto & Entertainment
bonittob@jamaicaobserver.com

 

A FULL house of guests turned out for the seventh annual staging of the 21st Hapilos Digital Music Awards at the Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston, St Andrew, on Tuesday night. However, only a few winners showed up to collect their prizes in the 21 categories up for grabs.

Christopher Birch, winner of the Top Dancehall Riddim Award for the Moskato Riddim

Christopher Birch, winner of the Top Dancehall Riddim Award for the Moskato Riddim

The ‘no-shows’ included: Alkaline (Top Male Artiste, Most Streamed Artiste, and Most Downloaded Artiste); Spice (Top Female Artiste); Tommy Lee Sparta (People’s Choice Award — Artiste); Rvssian (Top Record Label — Head Concussion Records, Privado — Top Collaboration, and Top Vevo Video); ZJ Sparks (Top Female Producer — Twelve 9 Records); Omari (Top Gospel Song — Wave); Conkarah (Top Reggae Single — Treat You Better); ZJ Chrome (Top Reggae Riddim — XOXO Riddim); and Konshens (Top Dancehall Single and Most Downloaded Single — Bruk Off Yuh Back).

Spice, Rvssian, ZJ Chrome, Omari, and Konshens sent acceptance speeches via video.

Nathaniel Wright, 21st Hapilos’s label manager, gave a reason for the winners’ low turnout.

Kedon Whyte with his Top Compilation Award for Hitmaker Muzik: The Hit Vol 1

Kedon Whyte with his Top Compilation Award for Hitmaker Muzik: The Hit Vol 1

“The awards used to be held in May. But this year, due to circumstances beyond our control, we had to shift it to August… and most artists go on tour in August. So going forward, it’s going to be held in May. Many persons came to the event late as well,” he told Jamaica Observer yesterday.

“But overall, it was a great success in terms of support. We had government representatives and corporate support.”

Kedon Whyte, principal of Hitmaker Muzik, was elated at securing the Top Compilation Album award. His Hitmaker Muzik: The Hit Vol 1 outshone the competition of Markus Records and Armzhouse Records.

“Numbers don’t lie. This album went into the iTunes Reggae Chart and peaked at number 5 on the Top 200 chart. We give thanks that the awards is authentic and we, who put in the hard work, can reap the benefits. It’s a good look!” Whyte told the Jamaica Observer.

Nathaniel Wright, 21st Hapilos’s label manager

Nathaniel Wright, 21st Hapilos’s label manager

The Top Dancehall Riddim went to Birchill Records’ Moskato Riddim. Label owner Christopher Birch shared his formula for success.

“Mosakto rhythm was the most popular rhythm. It was fun, it had energy and a vibe that was kinda different… It stood out as I wasn’t going with the crowd… In the music business, it’s always about what’s new, as people will always gravitate towards something new. Sometimes it’s a risk but you have to experiment,” said Birch. “Going forward, fans should expect more music, fun tracks, nothing too dark, because I’m a fun person.”

Other winners included Foota Hype (Social Media Icon); and Anju Blaxx (People’s Choice Award — Producer).

Mr G

Mr G

The evening took a sombre note with a video tribute to singjay J Capri, who died in a car crash in December 2015. She was 23.

Her tearful mother, Ordella Carwin, had a challenge in composing herself. A cheque of $121,000 was presented to J Capri’s alma mater, Wolmer’s Girls’ on behalf of the artiste’s foundation.

The event received an energy boost from Elephant Man’s set. Jiggy, Nuh Linga, Willie Bounce, Signal Di Plane, and Pon Di River found favour among guests.

Other performers included Alaine, Alozade (who was a last-minute stand-in for Tommy Lee Sparta), Barbee, Mr G, and Fully Bad.

21st Hapilos Digital Distribution is a dancehall and reggae online distribution company based in Manhattan, New York, and Kingston, Jamaica.

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