Sauti Sol bags MTV EMA Best African Act award

Thursday October 23 2014

Sauti Sol is this year’s Best African Act at

Sauti Sol is this year’s Best African Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards. PHOTO| FILE| NATION MEDIA GROUP 

Sauti Sol is this year’s Best African Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards. The Kenyan Afro pop group is the first Kenyan act ever to receive this award, validating both them and Kenyan music as a force to reckon with globally.

They beat other African artistes — Davido (Nigeria), Diamond (Tanzania), Toofan (Togo) and Goldfish (South Africa) — and are now the sole African ambassadors at EMA.

They have made it into the final voting phase, the prestigious Worldwide Act Award category, as one of 10 international Worldwide Act nominees.

FANS STILL HAVE TO VOTE

But there is still a ways to go. To win in the Worldwide Act category, fans will have to vote from today until next Wednesday.

If Sauti Sol does win, that announcement will be made in Glasgow, Scotland, at a live show on November 9, 2014, hosted by rapper Nicki Minaj.

The boys at Sauti Sol are no strangers to winning or to international recognition, having been nominated for the Channel O Africa Music Video Awards, the UK’s BEFFTA Awards and others. Previous winners of Best African Act have included 2Face (2005), Freshlyground (2006), D’Banj (2007 & 2012) and LCNVL (2013).

Sauti Sol has continuously showed how a group can harness the power of social media. They engaged fans on Facebook and Twitter, thanking and rewarding them for voting.

After their win, the band received congratulatory tweets from fans who are all too eager to support and celebrate an immensely talented band of entertainers whose understanding and execution of music has been a cut above the rest from the very beginning.  

The tech-savvy group went on an all-out internet campaign for votes to get this far. They audaciously asked the president if he had voted, to which he replied that he had. A move that undoubtedly encouraged his more than half a million twitter followers to follow suit in endorsing the group.

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Who are they?

Bein-Aimé Baraza (vocals), Willis Chimano (vocals), Delvin Savara Mudigi (vocals, drums) and Polycarp Otieno (guitar) formed Sauti Sol in 2005 in Nairobi.

The quartet has performed at numerous festivals (Blankets &Wine, Rift Valley Festival) and in 2012, was picked to perform all over the country under the Niko Na Safaricom Live tour. But that’s not all.

They so far have two albums out – Mwanzo and Sol Filosophia – and an EP released in 2012. Their latest album, Live and die in Afrika, comes out this year, the latest single from it being 'Sura Yako'.

Over the years, the boys have proved to be great performers, sending fans into frenzies and gaining the respect of fellow artistes.

They all have university degrees in various fields ranging from Actuarial Science to Journalism and Banking, an indication of their appreciation for a solid education.