414-Hip Hop artist "Zulu Boy" perfoming live at the 1st annual hip hop awards held at Braamfotein last night(Wednesday) 21.11.2012 Picture:Dumisani Dube

AFTER an almost two-hour wait, the lights finally dimmed to give hip hop stars a chance to shine at the first annual South African Hip Hop Music Awards.

The ceremonies began with Zuluboy and Riot, a former member of Gang of Instrumentals, performing a song called Baba Ba Xolele as if pleading with the audience to forgive the bad lighting and disorganisation.

Before the show, those who walked the red carpet had expressed an optimistic view of the initiative taken by the organisers.

One of them was leading SA rapper Proverb, who said he couldn’t care less about the naysayers.

“We don’t have something like this,” he said. “It’s bad enough that hip hop isn’t united.”

The divisions were made clearer earlier in the day when AKA, nominated in eight categories including song of the year, publicly snubbed the awards, stating he had not been informed of his nominations in time.

He was nominated for best male and album of the year. Khuli Chana won.

Other big winners of the night were Reason’s Do it Like I Can for song of the year and Khuli Chana, and Notshi’s Tswa Daar for video of the year. Both were absent.

The audience momentarily forgot the woes of the awards when Pule, the white s’khotane, and his sidekick J-Boboza had everyone in stitches. He outshone many of the nominees and winners.

Sparkz from The Reptiles, who won best dance crew, had only pleasant things to say about the awards, saying they meant a lot to them even though they had been to bigger events.