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I liked all the films especially the one for Superman [“This is Joe”] and the last one which was longer [“ Frontman ”]. I look forward to at...

Thursday, September 25, 2014

HOW MANY ROCK BANDS FROM KENYA WERE NOMINATED FOR THE AFRIMA AWARDS?



I first stumbled upon the AFRIMAs at their stand, during AITEC’s 2nd BFMA (Broadcast Film Music Africa) festival which took place in May of this year. After a minute or two of perusing through their pamphlets and brochures, it was quite evident that there was no rock ‘n’ roll category. I mentioned this omission to the lady at the stand and we then had a short discussion about rock music in Africa: how there were hundreds of rock bands all across Africa, of course with many of them in Southern Africa, but also more than a handful in East Africa (especially in Kenya) and a number in West Africa and even in Northern Africa. She promised to look into the prospect of adding a rock genre. 

Yesterday, I received an email from AFRIMA, listing the nominees of the various awards. I looked through the first pages, my heart sinking, thinking to myself, “Just the usual culprits. No rock ‘n’ roll category. No big surprise there…” But then I was suddenly, very pleasantly surprised when I saw the Parlotones mentioned and then Lo and Behold! An “African Rock” category! Yay! 

It was bitter-sweet though. Yes, there was a rock category but alas, no Kenyan bands were represented. Why is this when in the other categories such as hip hop, inspirational, etc, Kenyans feature prominently? Is it that the people in charge are not aware that there are Kenyan rock bands making quality rock music? Or is that, as usual, they ignored Kenyan rock bands? Or perhaps the fault is with the Kenyan rock bands; did they not submit their songs/videos? I will definitely begin an investigation to find out the answers to the above questions.

The following are the bands nominated in the “Best African Rock” category 

AFRIMA 2014: NOMINEES LIST                            
CATEGORY: BEST AFRICAN ROCK
ARTISTE
COUNTRY
TRACK
Dear Zim
Zimbabwe
Indiana
Shadow Club
South Africa
Melanielectriclove
Shaun Jacobs
South Africa
End of the Road
The Parlotones, featuring KhuliChana
South Africa
Sleepwalker

Van Coke Kartel
South Africa
Moregloed

I am yet to listen to any of these songs but once I do, I will do an in depth analysis, including how Kenyan rock songs measure up against them. I know for a fact that the Parlotones are a pretty good band.
I first heard of the Parlotones when I was in South Africa (late 2004 to late 2006), thanks to their cynical yet beautiful song called “Colourful”:

I get so nervous I stutter stutter
I am so clumsy I fumble stumble
I’m not some handsome knight in shining armour
I’m colourful, I’m colourful

Apart from being nominated in the “Best African Rock” category, the Parlotones have also been nominated for three other awards namely: Album of the Year” with their album “Stand Like Giants”. They will be competing with their countrymates Mafikizolo (album: “Reunited”). The Parlotones have also been nominated for “Songwriter of the Year” for the song “Sleepwalker”, which was co-written with Khuli Chana, Jon Savage and J. Nubrega. They will be competing with “Personally” and Nigeria’s “Pull Over”. Personally, I think more effort went into writing “Pull over” than “Personally” but that’s just my personal opinion. :-) 

 “Sleepwalker” has also been nominated for “Song of the Year”

All the best to the Parlotones!

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