For this, it announced nominees on October 1, 2019. This came after it called for artists to submit their music for consideration on September 24, 2019. The last event held in the first quarter of 2019. Through the years, the Headies have not been without moments of madness.
To celebrate the Headies, here are the top 10 mad moments in the history of the headies;
2016: Wizkid snubs Eva Alordiah’s fiancee, Caesar
In 2016, Wizkid was walking into the venue for the Headies when Eva Alordiah’s fiance, Caesar tried to hug him. He was snubbed in favour of Alordiah who sat beside him.
Wizkid later denied it, but the drama had become meal for social media.
2011: eLDee smoking a cigar while hosting
In 2011, Nigerian rap legend, producer, podcaster, and IT consultant, eLDee The Don had just released his fourth studio album, Is It Your Money. He was then contracted to host the 2011 Headies alongside Nigerian actress, Rita Dominic.
As he carried out his duty as host, he smoked a cigar for fun. While the world is now woke and social media would have hailed him if it happened in 2019, it was slightly risque in 2011.
2010: Terry Tha Rapman wins Best Rap Single
In 2010, Nigerian rap legend, Terry Tha Rapman won best rap single. It was seen as an upset by many who felt other nominees deserved it. Other nominees in the category were, ‘Ako Mi Ti Poju’ by Naeto C, ‘Somebody Wants To Die’ by M.I, ‘Owo Ati Swagger’ by Cartier, and ‘Finest’ by Knighthouse.
Another source of rancour was that ‘Pon Pon’ by Dagrin didn’t even get nominated.
2011: Julius Agwu jumping around with Modenine when the latter won Lyricist on the Roll
Nigerian rap legend, Modenine has won a record seven Lyricist on the Roll awards at The Headies. Until Vector broke the mould with his win for, ‘Angeli’ in 2012, the rapper also won five of those in a row.
In 2011, as he was about to celebrate one of those wins, Julius Agwu started jumping around himand almost took the shine off Modenine and his win.
2008: Muma Gee grabs the mic from M.I while he was giving his speech for his first award
Before Kanye West vs Taylor Swift at the VMAs, there was Muma Gee vs. MI Abaga. In 2008, MI Abaga won his first Headie for ‘Crown Mentality’ – the category was Best Rap Single.
While he was giving his acceptance speech, veteran Nigerian artist, Muma Gee grabbed the mic from MI and said whatever it is that she wanted to say.
2013: Sean Tizzle wins ‘Next Rated Artist’
In 2012, Nigerian singer, Sean Tizzle became the toast of music lovers with his hit single, ‘Sho Le.’ In 2013, he was named the Next Rated Artist at the Headies ahead of Burna Boy, Seyi Shay, Phyno and Dammy Krane.
When he was announced, he ran unto the stage like a man possessed and prostrated on stage. He then ran around the stage like a man in a haze before collecting the microphone to give the most awkward speech ever.
2013: Burna Boy falls off stage while performing with Dammy Krane
At the 2013 Headies Awards ceremony, Burna Boy fell down whilst performing his hit track ‘Like To Party.’ Dammy Krane was also on stage at the time. On the night, both acts also the Next Rated award to Sean Tizzle.
The drama started a few days prior when people felt Burna Boy subbed Nigerian actress, Tonto Dikeh‘s attempt to make music. Burna Boy made some less than favourable remarks about ‘wack artists’ who go about ‘releasing noisy wackiness’ and how ‘death is the least’ such people deserve. When he fell, people felt Dikeh had found vindication.
2010: Wande Coal wins five awards
In 2008, Nigeria singer, Wande Coal won Next Rated Award at the Hip-Hop World Awards (Now Headies). In 2009, he released his classic, Mushin2Mohits. By 2010, he got seven nominations and won five awards – including artist of the year – at the Headies.
That remains the record number of wins – in one night – till date.
2005: D’Banj performs with a towel
In 2005, Nigerian legend, D’Banj was the toast of Nigerian music. He had just released his album, No Long Thing – It was a darling of the Nigerian mainstream.
Thus, he was booked to perform at the Hip-Hop World Awards (now Headies). Nigerians in diaspora had seen his ability to wow a crowd with amazing stage craft at the Independence day concert only a few months prior.
What came next remains one of the most iconic moments in the history of Nigerian awards. He came onto the stage with only a towel – the crowd (especially women) went mad. Bovi tried to recreate that moment at the 2016 Headies, but the joke eluded a lot of viewers.
2015: Don Jazzy vs Olamide
Although a lot of artists have left the awards in their feelings and celebrated their wins with speeches about, ‘Finally,’ this drama unfolded and peaked right before our eyes. YBNL CEO, Olamide was arguably Nigeria’s hottest artist at the time. MAVIN Founder, Don Jazzy was a legend who got Special Recognition on the night.
It was December 2015 and we had some of most keenly contested categories in a while. The biggest drama began with one of the biggest upsets in Headies history – we still talk about it today. MAVIN Records’ then signee, Reekado Banks won the Next Rated category over Lil Kesh who was signed to Olamide’s YBNL at the time. By far, Lil Kesh easily had the better year.
When Reekado won, a large portion of his time was spent hugging Lil Kesh and giving him shout-outs. Reekado appeared as shocked as the audience. When then YBNL act Adekunle Gold won Best Alternative Song for ‘Sade,’ the YBNL contingent flooded the stage with native attires and hands filled with red cups.
After Adekunle Gold was done with his speech, he handed the microphone to Olamide who seized the moment to air his grievances on the Next Rated Award which was presented just moments earlier. He ranted on behalf of Lil Kesh who had prostrated on stage before Olamide just moments earlier.
With an initial jovial demeanour, he said, “Let’s be honest, this award belongs to Lil Kesh, because Lil Kesh is our own Next Rated artist. F**k that shit!…. The streets ti take over. Every f**king single was a hit back to back. From ‘Lyrically’ to ‘Shoki’ to ‘Efejoku.’ Ko ni dafun iyalaya anybody.”
He then dropped the microphone and walked off the stage throwing middle fingers like gang signs. When Don Jazzy accepted his Special Recognition Award, he said that he only came to the Headies to support his children (artists). He also said that he could buy them cars if they wanted to.
In the end, he said that, “Egbon Olamide, if you want the car, come and collect it. Thank you” and walked off. The night ended with Don Jazzy being told not to come to Mainland, Lagos. It had to be settled by Billionaire, Alhaji Aliko Dangote.