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My Rant: MOBO's don't care about the 'B'?

I wasn't gonna comment on this a) I didn't watch it (watched Beres and Tarrus in real life) and b) I think I've missed the boat. In the blogging world "It's better never than late" as I criticised MOBO's twitter for the other day after posting Estelle's old video as "new". But you know what? I'm gonna do it 'cos I just watched this (one of the disclaimers to the aforementioned rule is "unless you're bringing something fresh") over at MadNews where I almost flooded her comments box with this.

First off, I'm not sure if it was the editing but I didn't get MissLaLa's point about "They don't care about the MOBO's, they've got BET".

Actually, the real first off is people shouldn't really comment on things they don't care about in real life.

Moving on, do the MOBO's care about Black music? Well, by glancing at the list over the past couple years you will see some dodgy songs by Dizzee, Tinchy and a few others included in nominations that aren't of black origin sonically. They're straight euro-house songs or bland as brown bread pop. But then you ask yourself, what dictates if it's black music; instrumental or artist. In theory, a songs publishing is 50/50 split between producer & songwriter, therefore the artist should count too, right? So, (playing devils advocate) if an artist comes from a black music background, does that make it from black origin?

I don't actually know the answer to the above lol. Only created it as I write this post. I'll need longer to think about it. Maybe by the time we get to the end of the post.

Continuing on, would Jessie J's 'Do It Like A Dude' be considered MOBO if she were black? Once again I don't know if the song can be considered MOBO anyway because there are influences from many places. Her doing the live "urban" circuit blurred her lines anyway. Had she sprung up like Best Hip Hop nominees Rizzle Kicks doing it like a dude, I doubt people would have been happy.

Black music has changed too. R&B for example is more like house than r&b and more black acts have turned to anything that sounds like it makes money.

My problem isn't whether an artist like Jessie is considered MOBO, I think someone as big in the pop world as her who will win awards everywhere else kills the true meaning of MOBO. Jessie J won 4 MOBO's, all the pics I saw in national papers were of Jessie J and nothing much else. I wouldn't nominate her for more than one or two awards personally because she's a massive mainstream artist. You can say "Ahh you can't do that!" Hear what, I would!

Hear why; black artists rarely win Brit awards. Not saying it's because they are black, it is what it is. Urban artists (of all races) don't have the same impact on charts as rural music artists. Commentators say "You have MOBOs we don't have MOWO's", I ask them about NME, Q and Brits. I'm lying? Didn't think so. Plus, I'm sure it was white people that named it black music as an excuse to say they don't play it?

And this is why MOBO's are still needed if they are worked correctly. In the past, Craig David, Lemar and Beverly Knight have been good artists that have done extremely well for black music artists, however, they are always bettered by rural music counterparts at shows like the Brits. Even when Brits created the Urban award they gave it to Joss Stone, c'mon man (yea, Lemar went on to win it too but you get my point). Two years ago Tinchy Stryder was one of those who fitted in the category of good for urban, probs should get Brits, but snubbed. Cool, we understand that but MOBO's snubbed him too!

This year has been the year of Wretch 32. Two top 5's and a #1 from someone not many believed in last year. Everyone and their granny thought Wretch would sweep up, but, oh, he didn't win a thing. All he could tweet was "Speechless" (click here to see other artists reactions). Someone of that caliber is who should be sweeping the awards. That is what the MOBO awards were set up for. Celebrating the achievements of those who won't get rewarded anywhere else (UMA's don't count I'm afraid). Even someone like Katy B could get a shout for an award. She's had a good year. And award the upcoming artists we see making waves on the internet, pushing through to mainstream.

Theoretically that shouldn't happen. Public voting excuse is a bag of bollocks. We, the public, vote when we buy records. Awards should be (as) impartial (as possible) experts telling us who they think are the best.

In conclusion, do MOBO's care about the B? To some degree, obviously but not as much as they care about the P££ (a.k.a. pee a.k.a. pounds). They don't feed the root so how's the tree gonna grow?

And that right there rounds up the rant.

If you'd like a laugh, read the first ever Twitter Review which coincidentally about the 2010 MOBO Awards here. Hilarious

Final thought: I wonder if Blue, Another Level, BackStreet Boys, even the Spice Girls would be eligible for MOBOs today. They've made music of black origin like 3-time MOBO winners JLS and 4-time winner Jessie J...


  1. Hey Mr Sparks, I was talking about the American market not caring about the MOBOs. They cut me off mid-sentence, so I look like im talking about something else lol


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