The much awaited Ghana Music Awards 2012 nominations are out and a decision taken by the VGMA Board is already raising questions as to whether indeed they took the right decision for the right reasons.
Public Relations Officer Mrs. Juno Abena Ehigie-Dadson, revealed on Peace FM’s “Entertainment Review” that the VGMA Board has decided to disqualify one of the most popular songs at the moment, R2Bees’ single “Agyeii” which features Sarkodie and Nana Boroo.
According to Juno, the Board disqualified the song based on the fact that it contains sexually explicit lyrics. “This year, only one song was disqualified by the VGMA Board which is the R2Bees’ “Agyeii”. She said several other songs which were mostly sang in Ghanaian languages were listed as containing sexually suggestive lyrics, but after listening to all the songs and getting interpretations from several people, the board voted and a majority of the members thought the lyrics in “Agyeii” were too explicit, so it should be taken out of this year’s awards.
Asked to explain further why, among all the songs listed, only “Agyeii” was taken out, Juno said “We took it out as a song that contains sexually explicit lyrics and violence”. She stressed that this has nothing to do with R2Bees as artistes because they are a wonderful group, the song “Agyeii” is very creative and above all very popular but the lyrics are where the problem is, adding that it was not a one-man decision but that of the entire board.
Juno disclosed that the board had three different meetings on three different days, where they listened to that particular song over and over. They argued back and forth still they finally voted to take it out.
Host of the programme, Kwasi Aboagye, asked why “Agyeii” has been disqualified but “Yenko nkoa” by Eduwodzi which contains similar lyrics, was considered ok, Juno said that issue came up concerning lines in the song which were sung in “Ewe” but after speaking to over seven different individuals, Ewe linguists and ordinary Ewe natives and a majority of them believed that the Ewe lines in the song were sexually suggestive but not sexually explicit. So Eduwodzi’s “Yenko nkoa” which features Stay Jay was passed, with the majority of the board members agreeing to it.
Questioned as to why “Agyeii” as a song has been disqualified whereas R2Bees as artistes have been nominated in the “Artiste of the year” category which is the topmost award among other categories, for the same song which has been disqualified, Nii Aryetey Hammond of Charter House responded that “They are not being awarded for the song but they are being awarded as artistes. It is not based on the song that they are being awarded but the song gave them the chance to enter the categorization. That song has been dropped but as artistes they don’t perform only one song when they are on stage”.
Nii said the board took this decision not to stop anybody from being creative but even if the musicians decided to do profane songs, they should also do radio edit versions which can be aired on radio anytime.
“We are not saying that people shouldn’t come out with explicit lyrics but we are saying that when you do that, let me buy the album and it will be my choice to go and listen to it at home. However, what you put out, you must have a radio edit because when you have the radio edit, I don’t have an issue with it because there is a radio edit and that is what will be entered into the scheme, but not the explicit one”.
George Quaye of GH One Entertainment TV who was also on the show said he believed that board did this to educate musicians and encourage them to do a radio edit of their songs.
“The whole idea is to educate people but we don’t want to limit creativity. If any musician feels that the only way he can pass on a message in his music is to be sexually explicit, we are not saying don’t sing it. You can still sing your explicit lyrics but all we are saying is that the song that will be enjoyed by both the young and old should be a bit polished”.
When Peacefmonline.com contacted R2Bees manager Ike, he said they will not make any comment on the matter.
Meanwhile Peacefmonline.com investigation reveals that other songs like “The thing” by Atumpan featuring Bradez, “Wope dodo” by Yaw Siki, “Last One by Tiffany featuring Castro, “Shahee wowo” by Stay Jay, “Sokode” by Keche were all listed by the board as songs which may possibly contain suggestive words, but after all the deliberations only “Agyeii” was disqualified.
R2Bees were nominated for “Artistes of the year”, “Group of the year”, and “Hiplife/Hip hop artistes of the year” in this year VGMAs.
Watch video of the controversial “Agyeeii” below: