The IRAWMA nominations reveal dancehall deejay Mavado leading with a nod in eight categories, Beres Hammond and Elephant Man each with seven nominations, Etana and Queen Ifrica grabbing five nods, followed by Mr. Vegas with four nominations. Other nominees include Shaggy, Machel Montano, Morgan Heritage, Duane Stephenson, Damian Marley, Stephen Marley, Ziggy Marley, Wyclef Jean, Serani, Jazmine Sullivan, Luciano, Tony Rebel, Tarrus Riley and Stitchie, among others.
Ephraim Martin, president of Martin’s International & Associates and producer of the annual IRAWMA’s, says that some 30 countries in the Soviet Union and about 45 countries in Africa are just a fraction of the many places and media outlets that tune in to the IRAWMA’s each year. Voice of America (VOA), the official external radio and television broadcasting service of the United States federal government, keeps a log of the winners each year.
The 28th IRAWMA’s takes place on Sunday, May 3, 2009, starting at 6:00pm for VIP ticket holders, and 7:30pm for general admission. This year the ceremony will be held at the state-of-the-art York College Performing Arts Center, located at 94-45 Guy R. Brewer Boulevard in Jamaica, Queens, NY.
Tickets for the made-for-television celebration are now on sale at ticketmaster.com or 800-745-3000, and from IRAWMA at 877-9-REGGAE, and also from the York College Performing Arts Center’s box office at 718-262-2840. Advance VIP tickets are $150 and general admission tickets $75, with more at the door.