Yvonne Chaka Chaka’s Backing Vocalists and Session Musicians Awards is back


The Backing Vocalists and Session Musicians Awards (BVSMA) return after a two-year break.

Yvonne Chaka Chaka birthed the platform which is utilised to honour and appreciated talents who are keen to sustain the music industry, especially those who work behind the scene.

The music icon can relate to the struggles of most backup musicians.

“I was found by Phil Hollis in 1985 when I was 19 years old, and I tried to perform as a backing vocalist, and I was paid R30. I thought it would not work for me,” she said.

“A song cannot be complete without the guitar, drums and backing vocalists. Otherwise, we would all be singing acapella. These people are the heart of music making and it is important to honour them and let them know that they are valued, and frontlines cannot make it on their own,” Chaka Chaka tells ZiMoja.

This year’s edition will be staged at the Soweto Theatre in Jabulani, Soweto on Sunday, 5 February 2023.

Musicians who have worked from 2000 and 2005 will be awarded for their immense contributions.

There are nominees in 13 categories including Rookie of the Year, Best Lead Guitarist, Best Piano and Keys, Best Female/Male Backing Vocalist, and genres such as Best Reggae Artist, Best Jazz Artist, and Best Traditional Artist.

Yvonne urged brands to come sponsor the event.

“I urge people with deep pockets to come to the party. We give them R25 000, but no award ceremony in South Africa gives them that amount,” she says.


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