“So I didn’t win a MOBO after having the highest-selling urban single of the year and selling over 1 million singles this year,” fumed Tinchy Stryder last night, via Twitter. “F the MOBO’s”.
F indeed. After 13 years, the MOBOs – once a worthy and respectable celebration of black music – have atrophied into a shallow, celebrity-obsessed, tragic excuse for an awards show.
Let’s review last night’s ceremony, shall we? It all began with a performance from the aforementioned Tinchy Stryder. Good call – except, er, his microphone wasn’t working properly. Perhaps the organisers should’ve invested all that Lebara Mobile sponsorship money in a decent sound system, instead of flying Keri Hilson over to present.
After that, Donaeo, Egypt and Gracious K were allowed all of 15 seconds of the BBC’s precious airtime. From then it really went downhill. The nadir? When presenter Reggie Yates – Reggie Yates! – cut to that notable urban music expert Peter Andre backstage. I’m sure Katie Price wasn’t the only one laughing long and hard at the screen.
Which brings me on to the most epic fail of all, the awards themselves. Now, I know I’ve written about Dizzee and Tinchy turning their backs on grime, but surely they deserved recognition for what they’ve achieved in the past year? Instead we saw the likes of X-Factor rejects JLS and ghetto-superstars N-Dubz win a slew of awards.
Unsurprisingly, people are angry. Within hours of the ceremony finishing, an online petition surfaced on Twitter, entitled ‘Tinchy Stryder + Dizzee Rascal Got PARRED’ (ie robbed).
The thing is, I believe there is a value in the MOBO’s. Potentially, it could shine much-needed mainstream light on under-exposed genres. For example, UK funky has been the biggest sound to take over the black music scene in the past 12 months. You’d think a platform such as the MOBOs would really embrace that (as they did with garage, So Solid Crew et al, years ago). But no. They chose to honour N-Dubz instead.
Here’s how the awards should have looked.
Best UK Male: Dizzee Rascal
Best UK Female: Estelle
Best Video: Bashy ft H Boogie – ‘Your Wish Is My Command’
Best UK Funky Act: Donaeo
Breakthrough Grime Act: Tempa T
Single Of The Year: Gracious K – ‘Migraine Skank’
Collaboration Of The Year: Giggs & Mike Skinner – ‘Slow Songs’
Best Hip Hop Act: Giggs
Crossover Artist Of The Year: Tinchy Stryder
Best DJ: Logan Sama (KISS)
International Male: Drake
International Female: Jazmine Sullivan