No gospel awards to Bajans

high note


Barbados failed to come away with any of the coveted trophies from the 2014 Caribbean Gospel Music Marlin Awards held in the Bahamas last Saturday evening.

Losing out were recording artists Neesha Woodz, who was nominated in three categories –– Calypso-Soca Vocal Performance/Female (Adrenaline), Pop Vocal Performance Of The Year (More Precious) and Soca Recording Of The Year (Adrenaline); and the group A Few Good Men, nominated for Dance Recording Of The Year for their track Never Fall.

Neesha Woods
Neesha Woods

Receiving the top prize for Calypso-Soca Vocal Performance/Female was St Croix, US Virgin Island’s Harrella H. Goodwin for her song Hallelujah, with the Bahamas’ Lynn Terez Davis winning the category Pop Vocal Performance Of The Year with her selection Beautiful.

Neesha was also beaten out in the Soca Recording Of The Year category by Trinidad and Tobago’s Joel Positive Murray, whose track Blessing After Blessing got the judges’ approval. As far as the judges were concerned, A Few Good Men’s nominated song for Dance Recording Of The Year was not good enough to stop Trinidad and Tobago’s Rizon’s Higher Level recording.

A Few Good Men
A Few Good Men

Even though A Few Good Men did not win, their manager Tracy Joseph told High Note she was grateful to the event producer Kevin Harris for seeking them out as he appreciated the work of the group. Joseph acknowledged the high standard set by the organizers, which she said continues to get better every year. She is hoping A Few Good Men, along with John Yarde and Pasquin, whom she also manages, would be nominated for next year’s Marlin Awards.

Manager of Neesha, Orlando Newton, said it was interesting that for the first time a number of Barbadian artistes were nominated for the awards.

“We hope that next time, going forward, more would be able to enter and get more exposure,” added Newton.

The awards meanwhile were dominated by Positive who went to the event with a record number of nominations –– 13.  He swept those categories by winning eight of them, including the key ones like Album Of The Year (Forever My King), Reggae Recording Of The Year (Sweeter), Soca Recording Of The Year (Blessing After Blessing), Song Of The Year (Blessing After Blessing) and Reggae Vocal Performance Of The Year/Male (Better Must Come).

Joel Positive Murray
Joel Positive Murray

Sherwin Gardner, who performed at this year’s Barbados Gospelfest’s Ultimate Gospel at Farley Hill National Park, won one of his 11 nominations for Calypso-Soca Vocal Performance Duo/Group for We Now Start, featuring JPrince, who also performed at the same local festival.

DJ Nicholas, who is also familiar to many Barbadian gospel music fans, took away two awards in his 11 nominated categories. He won Dancehall Recording Of The Year for Cut It Off and Packaging Of The Year for School Of Volume.

The Calypso Recording Of The Year has gone to Sean Daniel’s Magnet, while Isaac Blackman’s Blessing Me, has taken Calypso-Soca Vocal Performance Of The Year/Male. Blackman is the Trinidadian artiste who in 2009 won several Marlin Awards, including one for Song Of The Year for his global anthem To The Ceiling.

He received ten nominations this year, including Album Of The Year (World Changers), Calypso/Soca Vocal Performance Of The Year/Duo/Group (Sweet Music) and Packaging Of The Year (World Changers). His latest soca single Blessing Me earned him nominations for Calypso/Soca Vocal Performance Of The Year/Male, Music Video Of The Year/Male, Soca Recording Of The Year and Song Of The Year.

The Producer Of The Year has gone to Reuel Lynch of Trinidad and Tobago. Other awards went to Kevin Downswell of Jamaica for Contemporary Recording Of The Year; Gates Praise-1st Church Of The Open Bible for Choir/Chorale Recording Of The Year (T&T), Chesternique featuring Sammi Starr for Contemporary Vocal Performance/Duo/Group (Bahamas); Kezie Peters for Contemporary Vocal Performance/Female (T&T); Sammi Starr for Contemporary Vocal Performance/Male (Bahamas); Jamaica’s Stitchie for DJ Vocal Performance Of The Year; Bahamas’ Bruce Hyppe for Hip Hop Recording Of The Year; Halle featuring Stacs for Hip Hop Vocal Performance Of The Year/Duo/Group (Bahamas); Bruce Hyppe for Hip Hop Vocal Performance Of The Year/Solo (Bahamas); Solomon Jabby for International Caribbean Album Of The Year (US); Lyrically Blessed for Inspirational Recording Of The Year (Bahamas); Roge Abergel & Kingdom Culture featuring Nigel Lewis for International Caribbean Recording Of The Year; Avion Blackman of Trinidad & Tobago for Music Video of the Year/Female; Rizon also of T&T for Music Video Of The Year/Male; Lytie of Jamaica for New Artist Of The Year; Shem Meluce featuring Linda Chocolate Berthier of St Lucia for Pop Recording Of The Year; Kevin Downswell of Jamaica for Praise & Worship Recording Of The Year; J Square of T&T for Reggae Hip Hop Recording Of The Year; Positive featuring Nikki Rymple for Reggae Vocal Performance Duo/Group (T&T); Kristine Alicia for Reggae Vocal Performance/Female (Jamaica); Avion Blackman for Reggae/Pop Recording (T&T); Kerron Ennis for Rock Recording (Jamaica); Robyn Hinds for Traditional Recording (Turks & Caicos); James Palacious featuring Marvin Henfield for Traditional Vocal Performance/Duo/Group (Bahamas); Shanique Thurston for Traditional Vocal Performance/Female (Bahamas); and Colyn Major for Traditional Vocal Performance/Male (Bahamas).

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