Musicians including Dave, Little Simz, and Ghetts have been honoured at this year’s MOBO Awards.
The ceremony, which showcases the best black music in the UK, Africa, the Caribbean, and beyond, also hailed London rapper Central Cee as the best drill act.
Rapper Dave won album of the year after picking up the most MOBO nominations for his critically-acclaimed second album, We’re All Alone in This Together.
Little Simz won her first award as best female act, while Ghetts won the best male act, at the 24th annual ceremony.
MOBO founder and CEO Kanya King explained the introduction of the new drill category to Sky News: “What’s important is for the MOBOs to be a driver of progress and to really celebrate the music that young people are into.
“Drill is a dominant genre, and we wanted to be able to celebrate the artistry.”
Drill has been blamed by authorities for encouraging youth violence, a claim refuted by Big Narstie, who said in 2018 that it is “unfair” that the genre was being linked to stabbings and shootings in the capital.
In the same year, the Metropolitan Police ordered YouTube to remove at least 30 drill videos from its platform, claiming they incited gang violence.
The MOBO Awards 2021 were streamed on YouTube from 8pm on Sunday, with Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock and comedian Munya Chawawa hosting this year’s show.
The full list of winners:
Album of the year – Dave We’re All Alone In This Together
Best male act – Ghetts
Best female act – Little Simz
Best newcomer – Central Cee
Song of the year – Tion Wayne and Russ Millions featuring Arrdee, Bugzy Malone, Buni, Darkoo, E1, Fivio Foreign and ZT – Body
Video of the year – Lagga – M1llionz
Best grime act – Skepta
Best R&B/soul act – Cleo Sol
Best hip hop act – D Block Europe
Best drill act – Central Cee
Best international act – WizKid
Best performance in a TV show/film – Micheal Ward as Franklyn in Small Axe
Best media personality – Chunkz and Yung Filly
Best gospel act – Guvna B
Best African act – Wizkid
Best reggae act – Shenseea
Best jazz act – Sons Of Kemet
Best producer – JAE5