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  • Writer's pictureJohn Adams

First-ever Caribbean Music Awards held in Brooklyn

The first annual Caribbean Music Awards was held on Thursday at King’s Theatre in Flatbush, Brooklyn. Hosted by Wyclef Jean, the show was a vibrant and spirited celebration of all music, people, and culture with roots in the West Indies.

“I’ve been to the Grammys, MTV Awards, all kinds of awards around the world. This is the only award show I feel so comfortable,” Clef told the audience at the top of the show.

“Tonight is a very, very important night as we celebrate the Caribbean region. Tonight is history,” the Haitian music mogul said. “They steal our culture and they change the name of it. They call it ‘pop.’ Tonight, we’re taking everything back to the Caribbean.”

Unlike other major music awards like the Grammys or Billboard Music Awards, the Caribbean Music Awards recognized artists from Caribbean music genres, including Soca, Dancehall, and Kompa, among others.

Award recipients were chosen by fans, who had opportunities to vote for their favorite songs, artists, and music videos online, months before the event.

Below are the winners announced on the night.

Overall Awards

People’s Choice Award: Kees Dieffenthaller

Artist of the Decade: Vybz Kartel

Dance Song of the Year: Bounce – Ding Dong

Soca Awards

Best New Soca Artist: Tempa

Best Soca Collab: GBM

Impact Award: Viking Ding Dong

Collaboration of the Year: GBM Nutron (feat. DJ Spider) – Down Dey

Kompa Awards

Band of the Year: Klass

Reggae and Dancehall Awards

Impact Award Reggae: Kabaka Pyramid

Video of the Year: Next to Me – Popcaan (feat. Toni-Ann Singh)

Female Artist of the Year: Spice

Best New Artist: Samora

Collaboration of the Year Reggae/Dancehall: Skeng (feat. Nicki Minaj) – Little Miss

Album of the Year: 438 by Masicka

Performer of the Year: Dexta Daps

Special Honorees

Lifetime Achievement Award: Machel Montano

Kompa Music Award: Mikaben

Elite Icon Award: Beres Hammond

Humanitarian Award: Buju Banton

Elite Calypso Music Award Honoree: David Rudder

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