Rapper EL came to the Vodafone Ghana Music Awards, held at the Accra International Conference Centre on 7 May, with eight nominations. He had received the highest nominations for its 2016 edition. He performed his hit song 'Koko' and left with five awards, the highest number of awards on the night.
Among his awards was one for Artist of the Year, continuing the dominance of rappers in that category. The second most successful artists on the night were another rapper, Sarkodie, and singer Bisa Kdei.
Both took four awards. Bisa Kdei’s hit song ‘Mansa’ won him half his awards in the Best Highlife and Most popular song of the Year categories. Sarkodie’s ‘Bra (with Pat Thomas) and ‘Hand to Mouth’ won him half of his. He performed the latter song to an engaged crowd. Other winners include Stonebwoy and Kofi Kinata, who took the songwriting award and was named Best New Artist.
Nigeria’s Wizkid put in a performance, going through a medley that included ‘Ojuelegba’, his chorus on the R2Bees’ song ‘Slow Down’ and the Femi Kuti assisted ‘Jaiye Jaiye’. He ended his performance by announcing Mr Eazi, R2Bees and Efya as signees to his StarBoy record label. He also won the African Artiste of the Year category.
Highlife great AB Crentsil was honoured with the Lifetime achievement award. Once again men dominated the awards. Although she was nominated for seven awards, Mz Vee won a single award, Best Female Vocalist of the Year - the only category excluding male performers.
Full list of winners below:
- Traditional Music Group of the Year - Tessa Music Group
- Instrumentalist of the Year - Justice Williams
- Sound Engineer of the Year - Kaywa
- Best Music for Development - Gasmilla
- Lifetime Achievement Award - AB Crentsil
- Songwriter of the Year - Kofi Kinaata
- Gospel song of the Year - Nicolas Omani Achaempong
- Highlife Song of the Year - ‘Mansa’ (Bisa Kdei)
- Reggae Dancehall Song of the Year - ‘Go Higher’ (Stonebwoy)
- HipHop Song of the Year - ‘Hand to Mouth’ (Sarkodie)
- Hiplife Song of the Year - ‘Yewo Kurom’ (Atom)
- Afropop Song of the Year - ‘Minaa bo Po’ (EL)
- Gospel Artiste of the Year - SP Kofi Sarpong
- Highlife Artiste of the Year - Bisa Kdei
- Hiplife/HipHop Artiste of the Year - EL
- Reggae Dancehall Artiste of the Year - Stonebwoy
- Best Female Vocalist of the Year - MzVee
- Best Male Vocalist of the Year - Pat Thomas
- Best Rapper of the Year - Sarkodie
- African Artiste of the Year - Wizkid
- Best Collaboration of the Year - ‘Skolom’ (VVIP)
- Best Group of the Year - VVIP
- Music Producer of the Year - EL
- Music Video of the Year - ‘Shelele’ (EL)
- Record of the Year - ‘Bra’ (Sarkodie ft. Pat Thomas)
- Best New Artiste of the Year - Kofi Kinaata
- Vodafone Most Popular Song of the Year - ‘Mansa’ (Bisa Kdei)
- Album of the Year - Breakthrough (Bisa Kdei)
- Artiste of the Year - EL