Gospel singer Daddy Owen was named Artiste of the Year at this year’s Kisima Music Awards held on Friday at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre.
And as he had promised, he dedicated his award worth Sh2 million to fellow musician Denno, with whom he sang the winning song “Mbona”.
“Sh1 million will go to Denno and the other Sh1 million will go to the Mbona campaign we started together,” Daddy Owen said.
Most of the nominated artistes snubbed the event that has been held under controversial circumstances, and the only winners present to receive their awards were Daddy Owen, Nameless, Nonini and Otieno Aloka of the Kanunga Eteko fame.
Camp Mulla, P-Unit, Avril, Wyre, Jose Chameleone from Uganda and Sauti Sol completed the list of winners but did not attend the event.
Camp Mulla won in two categories — Best Upcoming Artistes and Urban Artistes of the Year for their song Party Don’t Stop.
Nonini won the Hiphop Artiste of the Year and Video of the Year along with his video director Willy Ousu for the song Colour Kwa Face.
Wyre took home the gong for Ragga Artiste of the Year (Guarantee), Avril won the Boomba Artiste category (Kitu Kimoja), Nameless took the Fusion Artiste (Coming Home) and Lifetime Achievement awards, Otieno Aloka got the Benga Artiste award, and P Unit and Sauti Sol won Collaboration of the Year (Gentleman).
Chameleone was awarded the East African Recognition award.
However, many of those who paid the Sh2,000 fee to enter the event left before the winners were announced.
Those who spoke to the Sunday Nation said there were too many performances by artistes who were not popular.
The lead-up to the 10th edition of the Kisima Awards has been marred by controversy. A few months back, artistes had expressed their disappointment with the event, alleging that it is run by selfish people who were making money off musicians and did not care about growing the music industry.
Although Daddy Owen asked the Kisima secretariat not to nominate him, they went ahead to give him four nominations. DNA, whose song Maswali ya Polisi is riding high, also declined his nomination, saying it was not a reflection of his fans’ views.
“My fans have accepted my song throughout East Africa, and that’s the biggest award,” he said earlier.
Size 8 and Grandpa Records also declined their nominations for personal reasons, while rapper Cannibal said that the song he was being nominated for, Mafans, had been released two years ago.