The home crowd is likely to show strong support for domestic artists at this year's 2010 MTV Africa Music Awards in Lagos: Nigerian acts have earned 13 nominations in total.

Among these were three nominations for duo P-Square (artist of the year, best group and best video for "E No Easy", a collaboration with J. Martins), and two nominations each for 2FACE (best male, artist of the year), Wande Coal (best Anglophone, best male) and Banky W (song of the year, best video for "Strong Ting").

South Africa is represented by seven artist nominations, starting with hip-hop duo Jozi for artist of the year, as well as fellow hip-hop acts Teargas (best group) and JR (song of the year for "Show Dem"). The country's dance and kwaito contingents are strongly represented with Black Coffee earning a nomination for best male, Big Nuz up for best Anglophone, Liquideep up for song of the year ("Fairytale") and the Parlotones in the running for best video ("Life Design").

A host of east African artists are also in the running including Kenyan Gospel crossover artist Daddy Owen who is nominated for the first time in the best Anglophone category.

Rihanna, Eminem, Drake and Rick Ross are nominated in the best international category.

The ceremony takes place at the Eko Expo Centre in Lagos on Dec. 11.

The inclusion of categories catering for Africa's Lusophone and Francophone artists underlines MTV Network Africa's business intentions in these markets.

"It is true that we are now also looking to strengthen our presence in these two markets," Alex Okosi, senior VP and managing director at the Johannesburg-headquartered MTV Networks Africa, tells Billboard.biz. "As a business, it has always been important to us to reflect the music tastes of the entire African landscape."

Fally Ipupa leads the Francophone charge, weighing in with four MAMA award nominations - the most of any artist in the third outing for these awards. The new generation Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) artist - who is also performing at the ceremony - is up for artist of the year, best male, best video ("Sexy Dance") and best Francophone.

Angolan artists Cabo Snoop and Paul G are nominated in the best Lusophone category alongside Mozambique's hip-hop artists Lizha James and Dama do Bling. James also picked up a nomination for best female in a category that also includes the DRC's Barbara Kanam and both Sasha and Nneka of Nigeria.

Okosi says he believes the 2010 nominees list is the most "interesting and different to date".

"It is great to see Fally Ipupa getting so many nominations and I am a big fan of Cabo Snoop from Angola. I am also pleased to see a crossover gospel artist like Daddy Owen from Kenya getting recognition," Okosi says.

The 2010 MTV Africa Music Awards is sponsored by Zain in association with MasterCard.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboardbiz

Print