Maskandi singer Khuzani “Indlamlenze” Mpungose who won Ukhozi FM’s song of the year contest has promised to address the station’s followers on Thursday evening.
Taking to social media, he said he would be live on his social media platforms to address several issues following an uproar over his radio contest victory. In what he terms “Address to the Nation”, Khuzani says he would talk about the song of the year controversy, Ukhozi FM and Blue Nation. The latter are his legion of loyal supporters who are known for dressing in blue T-shirts or sweaters and track pants.
On New Year’s Eve, Khuzani was booed and pelted with missiles on stage when he was to perform his song Umjolo Lowo which won the Ukhozi FM song of the year contest.
The incident happened during the Gumba Festival hosted at the Umhlathuze Sports Complex in Richard’s Bay, northern KwaZulu-Natal.
He was jeered and embarrassingly ignored when he tried to entice the crowd to sing along. What was envisaged to be a joyous crossover party with a song turned into a damp squib.
Revelers could be heard shouting and yelling at festival programme director and Ukhozi FM DJ Tshatha Ngobe after announcing Khuzani had won the controversy-tainted competition.
It’s not clear why Khuzani was attacked but it could have been a case of sour grapes. Many in the crowd had been rooting for Thukzin’s iPlan or Paris by Mthandeni “Igcokama Elisha” Manqele to win.
Crossover song a hotly contested terrain
The three songs were finalists in the contest whose winner was voted for by Ukhozi FM listeners. Khuzani won massively with 993 667 votes, while Mthandeni bagged a competitive 746 338 votes. Thukzin was a distant third with a mere 90 422 votes.
The song of the year concept refers to the summer hit song which is played on the stroke of midnight on December 31 to usher in the New Year. It is a culture which is adopted by all SABC vernacular radio stations. However, the idea has since been taken to another level at Ukhozi FM where listeners vote for the New Year song, aka song of the year.
It is has therefore become a hotly contested terrain at SA’s biggest radio station in recent years so much that it attracts controversy and sparks anger.
Elsewhere in South Africa, the biggest hit of the summer was Keneilwe by Master KG featuring Nkosazana Daughter. The song, a remake of an old hit by Dalom Kids, won song of the year accolades at stations including Thobela FM, Munghana Lonene, Motsweding FM and Lesedi FM.