The 2017 edition of the All Africa Music Awards (Afrima) has received an overwhelming response after receiving 4,816 entries from African music artistes and music professionals at the close of the two-month entry submission process.
The African Union and the International Committee of Afrima had opened the 2017 Afrima call for entries on 8 May 2017 giving an opportunity to African music artistes, record producers, songwriters, video directors and music journalists to enter their qualified works on the Afrima website and the awards’ social media platforms. Entries for Afrima 2017 closed on 17 July.
This response of 4,816 entries is an astronomical increase from the 2,714 number of entries received in 2016 which amounts to a whopping 77.25% increase compared to last year.
Analysis reveals the regions with the highest entries as East Africa, with 47% of the total entries, and West Africa, with 30%. This immense progress is a positive marker and has elicited satisfaction from the African Union, the International Committee of Afrima, the regional and country directors of Afrima.
Expressing his excitement at the high number of entries in 2017, Afrima’s international advisor and member of its International Committee, Mr Rikki Stein, stated: “This is tremendous news, indicative of an increasingly healthy music industry across Africa, particularly from a creative perspective. Afrima is plugged in to the aspirations of the African continent, providing a platform for excellence in the field of music and a source of inspiration and encouragement for its associated fields of endeavour; songwriters, producers, sound engineers, distributors, publicists, marketers, photographers, videographers, stylists, journalists, bloggers, DJs and on and on”.
Stein, who was a friend and manager to the late African music legend, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, also added, “As one by one, African artists are making their mark in the wider world, acting as ambassadors of their countries and their culture, the eyes and ears of that wider world are opening and turning towards Africa as the source of much more than entertainment. In its finest form, as will be evident amongst Afrima nominees and eventual winners, they provide an antidote to negativity and cynicism, offering a healing form for ailments of heart and spirit; what Fela used to call, ‘the underground spiritual game’”.
Following the close of entry submission is the screening and adjudication processes which will end on 8 August. The 13-man Afrima jury will review the 4,816 entries to determine the works of African talents that are adjudged on merit to be on the Afrima 2017 nominees list.
Afrima 2017 will be held from Thursday, 9 November to Sunday, 12 November 2017 with a live broadcast to 84 countries across the world.