About this time last year, The Con published an article, “The Con Declares the South African Music Awards Finish and Klaar“. In it we argued that the SAMA awards had become a giant joke that rewards the mediocrity that is the established music industry at the expense of independent artists who have no label backing. We argued that often the most interesting music in South Africa was coming from these independent artists. Perhaps someone was listening or maybe the SAMA’s got better judges this year, because in 2014 it seems that a few real music gems got nominated amongst all the usual commercial dross. Below we identify the nominated artists we feel are worthy of being recognised for their work in 2013 and a few that were not nominated, but we feel deserve some credit.

First up, let’s deal with the artist that The Con tips to win big at this year’s SAMA awards, Nakhane Toure [You can read The Con's interview with Toure from last year here]. Toure is nominated in four different categories, Album of the Year, Male Artist of the Year, Newcomer of the Year and Best Alternative Album. We believe that Toure could quite possibly win all four of these, especially when you take a look at the artists he is up against. We have picked him to win three of these awards, however, leaving some space to recognise Chris Letcher’s brilliant EP Hyperbalist. After all it’s a little perplexing to figure out how an alternative album can be nominated as album of the year, which begs the question, alternative to what? 




Male Artist of the Year

The Con’s Pick: Nakhane Toure – Brave Confusion

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Connell Cruise, Kabomo, Matthew Mole, Vusi Mahlasela, Nakhane Toure

Newcomer of the Year

The Con’s Pick: Nakhane Toure – Brave Confusion

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Gangs of Ballett, iFani, MuzArt, Naima Kay, Nakhane Toure

Album of the Year:

The Con’s Pick: Nakhane Toure – Brave Confusion

SAMA 2014 Nominations: DJ Kent, Mafikizolo, Mi Casa, Naima Kay, Nakhane Toure


Dear Reader


Female Artist of the Year

The Con’s Pick: Dear Reader – Rivonia

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Dear Reader, Judith Sephuma, Naima Kay, Rebecca, Zahara




Duo or Group of the Year

The Con’s Pick: BCUC – Journey – The Uncontainable Fire Within

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Gangs of Ballet, Goodluck, Mafikizolo, Mi Casa, The Parlotones




Best Rock Album

The Con’s Pick: Die See – II

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Gangs of Ballet, The Parlotones, Shadowclub, Van Coke Cartel, The Black Cat Bones


Chris Letcher


Best Alternative Album

The Con’s Pick: Chris Letcher – Hyperbalist

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Dear Reader, Death by Misadventure, Die See, Nakhane Toure, Chris Letcher




Best Rap Album

The Con’s Pick: LV – Sebenza (feat Okmalumkoolkat, Spoek Mathambo and Ruffest)

SAMA 2014 Nominations: AB Crazy, iFani, Kwesta, L-Tido, Molemi


Uhuru - Our Father by SharingaNews


Best Kwaito Album

The Con’s Pick: Uhuru – Our Father

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Alaska, Big Nuz, Character, Mandoza, Tzozo




Best Dance Album

The Con’s Pick: DJ Spoko – Ghost Town EP

SAMA 2014 Nominations: DJ Kent, Lulo Cafe, Mi Casa, Uhuru, Zakes Bantwini


Project Elo


Best Jazz Album

The Con’s Pick: Tumi Mogorosi – Project Elo

SAMA 2014 Nominations: Marcus Wyatt Quartet, Shane Cooper, Sisa Sopazi, Zim Ngqawana, Tumi Mogorosi


DJ Ganyani


Song of the Year

The Con’s Pick: DJ Ganyani - Xigubu


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3 Responses to “Who Really Deserves a SAMA in 2014?”

  1. Mandla
    April 28, 2014 at 8:00 am #

    When an artist comes through, he identifies him/herself with a genre… It is as shortsighted as is it necessary devil, because then it’s easier for the market to identify with what you are doing as an artist. With that being said, if you guys have Nakane losing his identifying award, he can’t win best male, and can’t win album of the year because Chris would’ve already shown that he has the better album…

    • Lloyd Gedye
      Lloyd Gedye
      April 28, 2014 at 8:11 am #

      Hi Mandla, Thanks for pointing this out. I guess the point we were making is why is Nakhane in “alternative” and if so, what is his music an alternative too.We generally find the categories quite perplexing, as in what makes Die See an “alternative album” and Van Coke Cartel a “rock album”. Also what makes Big Nuz a “kwaito album” and Uhuru a “dance album”. What makes The Parlotones a “rock album” instead of a “pop album”. The craziest example was when BLK JKS won for best “english rock album” in 2010, when they sing in multiple languages, with English not being the most often used. Their music also incorporates so many music styles, besides rock. Anyway our post is all hypothetical anyway as we said the SAMAs are a joke and we gave some of our awards to people who were not even nominated.

  2. MusicCritique
    May 2, 2014 at 5:20 am #

    The SAMAs have become a joke! They need to be called UNIVERSAL MUSIC awards because if u pay close attention to the winners…the ones who won big…they are either signed by universal or their independent label has a close relationship, either Distribution and publishing done by Universal. Last year iy was SONY and Universal. Its sad that a artist like Mafizolo who had two singles that sounded exactly the same should bag 7 awards!!! Totql and utter nonsense. But hey, im just one person… But there really is something cooking.there with RANDALL ABRAHAMS sitting on the SAMAs board and also MD of universal music. Iys no wonder universl artists