Big Nuz took home three statuettes at the South African Music Awards (SAMAs), held at the Sun City Resort in the North West province.

The triple win proved that post-apartheid urban youth genre kwaito has staying power. The Durban-based trio scored a coup by beating out Afro-Soul veteran Busi Mhlongo, jazz artist Selaelo Selota, hip-hop outfit Teargas and international Afro-rock hotshots Blk Jks for the album of the year title.

The SAMA was for Big Nuz's album "Undisputed" (Afrotainment/Kalawa Jazmee/Universal SA) which also took home the award for best kwaito Album. A track from the album, "Umlilo" featuring Tira, added a third SAMA to Big Nuz's tally when it scored the highest number of votes in the MTN record of the year category - the only public-voted category at the annual event organized by the Recording Industry of South Africa (RISA).

The bulk of the 60 categories are voted for by a panel of 207 judges, drawn from various sectors of the industry. Only the lifetime achievement award, best-selling album, the digital categories and the newly added international achievement award are decided by the SAMA 16 Steering Committee made up of representatives of RiSA's members.

Lifetime achievement went to Afrikaans pop star Carike Keuzenkamp, and the late Afro-Roots singer and songwriter Jabu Khanyile, while best-selling album was awarded to Afrikaans pop singer Bok van Blerk for the album "Hart" (Mozi Records). The singer - whose 2006 anthem "De La Rey" courted controversy for its support of a Boer War general - paid tribute to the SAMAs "for showing South Africans can unite across different genres."

Best-selling mobile music download and best-selling ring back tone were both awarded to house artist DJ Cleo for the track "Hands Up" (from the album "Es'Khaleni Unit 5" released by Will of Steel). Best-selling full track download went to Afrikaans pop artist Kurt Darren and his track "Af En Af" while Darren's "Kaptein" was named best selling true tone. Both are taken from the album "Uit Die Diepte Van My Hart" (Select Music).

Soweto Gospel Choir was named the winner of the first-ever international achievement award. The Choir has won two Grammy Awards for albums "Blessed" and "African Spirit" (Universal).

Other notable winners include Afro-Soul artist Lira who added to her triple haul in 2009 with two more SAMAs - this time for female artist of the year for "Live In Concert: A Celebration" (Sony Music) and best global chart DVD for "Live In Concert: A Celebration" (Sony Music). The other top five category winners were Jaziel Brothers whose "The Journey" (Sheer) earned the Afro-soul duo the duo or group of the year SAMA, Black Coffee whose "Home Brewed" (Universal) saw the house DJ named male artist of the year and Tshepo Mngoma, a jazz artist whose debut "People and Places" (Big Fish Music) earned him the title of best newcomer.

Best rock album (English) was won by the Parlotones for "Stardust Galaxies" (Sovereign) while best pop album (English) saw 17-year-old Axene take the SAMA for her debut "16" (Mike Fuller Music). Dear Reader got the nod for best adult contemporary album (English) for "Replace Why With Funny" (Just Music) and best alternative music album (English) saw Blk Jks winners for their album "After Robots" (Just Music).

For a full list of winners go to http://www.samusicawards.co.za

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