The First Annual Madison Hip-Hop Awards took place at the Barrymore Theater on Friday, November 5th. The crowd was estimated at nearly 300 but the enthusiasm and excitement filled the house.
The advance buzz on this event was practically nil. Efforts to promote it where restricted to online resources, word-of-mouth and the promotional efforts of 93.1 The Jamz. The post-reporting has been even less, demonstrating how completely out-of-touch the mainstream music reporting has become on the subject of local hip-hop music.
There were approximately 100 nominees who were chosen by a nominee committee. Awards were presented in eighteen different categories. Performers included Star Persons, Krucial Impak, dumate and members of First Wave.
But the real winner was Madison hip-hop itself. Though there are sure to be those who would criticize the organizers of the event for earning nominations (particularly L.O.S.T. S.O.U.L.S. and Top of the Map Entertainment), there were no visible problems with any of the presentations. Besides, somebody had to get this thing started and they certainly deserve props for doing so. The vibe was so overwhelmingly positive that it made this event a pure joy to attend.
Like the Madison Area Music Awards (which represents nearly twenty genres of music in the Madison area including hip-hop), the Hip-Hop Awards were set up as a benefit, in this case, Toys for Tots. Speculation was no-doubt made about the Hip-Hop Awards being a reaction to the MAMAs but the truth is that the MAMAs consulted with the organizers from the start, offering advice and even assisting in setting up a similar online voting system. The two organizations are hopeful that together, more recognition can be given to Madison-area hip-hop artists and that ultimately, they work in concert to serve the community, both in an artistic sense and a charitable sense.
The complete list of winners is below:
Next Generation: Young Deucez
Promoter of the Year: Top of the Map Entertainment
Producer of the Year: DJ Pain 1
DJ of the Year: DJ Pain 1
Mixtape of the Year: The Refund Hosted by INAR & CAL40, mixed by DJ Pain 1
R&B Artist of the Year: Young J. Diamondzz
Fan of the Year: Bruce “Moose” Johnson
Grinder of the Year: DJ Pain 1
Best Live Venue: High Noon Saloon
Hip-Hop Dancer of the Year: Erika Bozak
Street Artist of the Year: Face
Collaboration of the Year: They Don’t Know Cory ‘O.Dot’ Park ft. Jesse Lester
Album of the Year: The Dot.U.Mentally (of Cory Park) Cory ‘O.Dot’ Park
Song of the Year: Love Your Body Young J Diamondzz ft. LUV and DJ Pain 1
Most Influential: DJ Pain 1
Hip-Hop Group of the Year: L.O.S.T. S.O.U.L.S.
Hip-Hop Duo of the Year: 9 Delegates
Hip-Hop Artist of the Year: Cory ‘O.Dot’ Park