The Dove Awards recently revealed which artists got nominations for various categories. For the Christian Hip Hop community, the “Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year” category is a big deal. We want the best projects to represent our genre at award shows and something recently happened that has many believing our wish wasn’t granted. When a Christian Hip Hop connoisseur takes a look at what records made the “Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year” category for the 2013 Dove Awards, they cannot help but wonder how Manafest’s Rock project, Fighter, was included in a list that consisted of music by urban heavyweights like Lecrae (Gravity), Andy Mineo (Heroes For Sale), KJ-52 (Dangerous), and Trip Lee (The Good Life). How did that happen? Fighter is clearly a Rock album.
Manafest, a 3-time Juno nominee, has a history of releasing authentically Hip Hop records, but his latest project, Fighter, just does not fit the mold of those tracks. If you go to iTunes and look at the Manafest records available, you will find projects that are categorized as Hip-Hop/Rap (Mislead Youth and My Own Thing). So, this article is not to say that Manafest isn’t a dope emcee because he has a nice catalogue of solid Hip Hop, even though it’s been years since his last Hip Hop release. This is to say that Fighter, by Manafest, wasn’t the best choice for a “Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year” Dove nomination because it’s not a Rap/Hip Hop album and there are plenty of albums released in that category which created a significant impact on the music industry and deserve recognition. Many within Christian Hip Hop are eager to hear an explanation for how Manafest’s Fighter was nominated for “Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year.” DaSouth.com recently got an opportunity to ask Rick Greene (founder of Infinity Distro), Chris Hauser (Radio Promoter), and Ken Farley (GMA Dove Awards Rock/Rap & Hip Hop Screening Committee) about this whole situation.
Here are their explanations for how Fighter managed to nab a Hip Hop nomination:
“I oversee the process but I need more information from people who were in the room deciding whether the record was eligible based on content.” – Chris Hauser (Head of the Awards & Criteria Committee)
Chris helped us in major ways with recommendations on who to speak with and more. Check out some of the statements we were able to acquire in regards to Fighter getting a nomination for “Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year.”