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King or 1Gad, who sits on TGMA throne?
King or 1Gad, who sits on TGMA throne?
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King or 1Gad, who sits on TGMA throne?

DANCEHALL artiste Stonebwoy and Terminator hitmaker, King Promise, have been tipped as favourites to win the 25th Telecel Ghana Music Awards (TGMA) Artiste of the Year when the event comes off at the Grand Arena of the Accra International Conference Centre (AICC) on Saturday, June 1.

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Perhaps, for many in the auditorium on the night, the statement: “And the winner of Telecel Artiste of the Year is…” might be ordinary but for the two artistes and their fans, it will definitely be the most anticipated.

This year, six artistes, namely Stonebwoy, King Promise, Nacee, Sarkodie, Black Sherif and Kuami Eugene, are competing for the topmost prize of the awards scheme organised by Charterhouse and sponsored by Telecel.

As has been happening over the years, even though there are a number of nominees vying for the award in the category, the Artiste of the Year race has always been a straight fight between two artistes.

King Promise and Stonebwoy ‘rivalry’

Stonebwoy also known as 1Gad has 13 nominations, the highest in the TGMA this year and his records in the year under review make a good case for him.

Stonebwoy’s highlights in the year under review include his collaboration with Angelique Kidjo on Manodzi. He also performed around the world and his concert at the Accra Sports Stadium was one of the biggest last Christmas.

In addition, his single Into The Future, made great waves, landing enviable spots on streaming platforms.

For his part, King Promise’s Terminator song did a lot of magic in Ghana and beyond, amassing 41 million views on YouTube and sparking a viral TikTok challenge too.

 He also remixed Terminator with Jamaican rapper and singer Sean Paul and Nigerian star Tiwa Savage, resulting in another banger. ( Related article The King’s crowning moment is here? )

Favourite artistes

Singling out Stonebwoy and King Promise as favourites is not a means to downplay the works of the other nominees in the category.

Notable mention of such cases were in 2020 when the argument of who deserves Artiste of the Year was a face-off between Kofi Kinaata and Kuami Eugene. It wasn’t different in 2021 when gospel singer, Diana Hamilton beat KiDi, who came across as a stronger contender that year.

Last year, it was another head to head battle between gospel singer, Piesie Esther and Black Sherif; the latter is the reigning Artiste of the Year.

 The created rivalry always generates interesting conversations on social media with their “campaign managers” touting their respective achievements.

While many anticipated a repeat of what happened in 2021 and last year with the gospel music fraternity making a strong case for their artistes, it appears the ‘energy battery’ ran low this year, leaving gospel act, Nacee, who arguably had one of the biggest songs in the year under review  virtually out of the race.

Well, the blame has been left squarely at the doorstep of The Table of Men, an all-men group of gospel music executives, who aim at projecting activities of gospel artistes and their music.

But in the words of the PRO of the group, Kwame OB Nartey, “… for Piesie, we all joined her ride. We didn’t go pulling her. She was excited about it and she showed so much enthusiasm about the award. So all we had to do was just to plug in and make it big”.

His statement couldn’t be far from the truth. In 2021 and 2023, Diana Hamilton and Piesie Esther were in everyone’s face. Thanks to the energy from their respective camps.

Anyway, the twist in this year’s Artiste of the Year race is that but for Nacee and King Promise, the other four nominees have been title holders.

Sarkodie is a two-time holder in 2010 and 2012, Stonebwoy in 2015, Kuami Eugene won in 2020 and Black Sherif is the reigning champion.

The anticipation is building, and the excitement is palpable. One thing is certain - the winner will be an artiste who has made a significant impact on the music industry in the past year.

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So come Saturday, will the king wear his crown or the Gad will take it home? Will there be any surprises? Who wears the Artiste of the Year crown? ‘Stay tuned’.

 

 

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