Our prayers have been answered - ZCC musicians
The ZCC gospel music fraternity is claiming victory after receiving two nominations at the 26th annual SA Music Awards (Samas) following "25 years of discrimination".
ZCC gospel artists who last year launched a campaign to have their music recognised by SA's premier music awards told Sowetan that the "victory" is only the beginning.
Two acts from the genre were nodded for Best African Indigenous Faith Album last week when the Samas announced their nominations.
The acts are renowned group Wacha Mkhukhu Wachumlilo and musician Matsobane Maifo.
"By just nomination it feels like we have achieved so much because for years this music was not taken seriously. It is a big honour and I would like to thank the God of Mount Zion who continues to guide us and look over us," said Ndumiso Mabena, lead vocalist of Wacha Mkhukhu Wachumlilo.
Spokesperson for the movement Moeti Seruteng added: "We are humbled and pleased to announce that after years of lack of recognition and respect for the ZCC gospel music genre all that is finally coming to an end."
Yesterday, Samas organisers, the Recording Industry of South African (RiSA), maintained that they never ignored the genre. "Every genre is weighed by the number of entries to justify its continued existence.
"It is only when there is a consistent increase of number of entries that a category is upheld," RiSA spokesperson Lesley Mofokeng said.
The movement said they will continue to demand an independent category.
"We will not tire out nor will we relinquish this fight until there is an independent category on the awards for this particular genre, which for many years was reduced to the 'other genre'," Seruteng said.
"Nothing better would honour our late legends who carved the way for this genre and in this instance we refer to the late Nkosana Kodi, Lucas "Mojeremane" Xale, Oleseng Shuping, Matlakala Ramathoka, to name but a few."
Mofokeng said that it wasn't impossible that in the future the genre could get an independent category at the Samas. "The message has always been that if there is a consistent and high number of entries over a long period, then an independent category may be considered," Mofokeng explained.
Sowetan reported last year how tensions built between Samas and ZCC gospel fraternity over the alleged snub of their music.
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