Black artists don’t just make hip hop – why recognition of metal, punk, rock and emo by Mobo is long overdue
, 2022-11-29 17:04:56,
Alternative music has been having a moment – from successful vinyl represses by bands from days gone by, to the announcement of the festival Sick New World which features a line up of alternative music icons.
Cue the introduction in 2022 of an “alternative music” category to the Mobo Awards, an annual British music award ceremony which celebrates achievements related to black music.
The heart of this genre includes the artistry and talent of many black musicians, the DIY spirit of black punks, and the staying power of black women in heavy metal, whose substantial recognition in the music industry is long overdue.
As the podcast On Wednesdays We Wear Black (which addresses “… everything from sex, racism and gigs to myspace emo fashion”) reminds its listeners, alternative music has a rich black history.
Since 1996, the Mobo Awards have been dedicated to honouring black music against the predominantly white backdrop of the British music and media industry. Which begs the question: why has it taken so long to introduce an “alternative music” category?
From the margins to the mainstream?
As is indicated by the range of nominees for the first “alternative music” Mobo Award (Big Joanie, Bob Vylan, Kid Bookie, Loathe, Nova Twins, Skunk Anansie), black alternative musicians have been active for decades and have inspired and supported these new emerging acts.
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