Melissa, Karen, Masterpiece shine at AMD ’16

Masing (standing, centre) with members of Masterpiece (front row) after the presentation of the awards. With Masing are (standing, from right) Mussen, Salang and Snowdan. — Photos by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

Masing (standing, centre) with members of Masterpiece (front row) after the presentation of the awards. With Masing are (standing, from right) Mussen, Salang and Snowdan. — Photos by Muhammad Rais Sanusi

KUCHING: Two artistes and one band bagged the most awards at the Dayak Music Awards (AMD) 2016 here on Saturday, hosted by Dayak Artistes and Musicians Association (Dama).

Iban songbirds Melissa Francis and Karen Libau, and rock group Masterpiece each took home three awards at the grand ceremony that took place at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK).

Unlike the 2014 show where Gabriel Fairuz Louis individually won the most categories, Melissa, Karen and Masterpiece had to share the honours this time around.

Melissa claimed the ‘Most Popular Song’ and ‘Best Ballad’ awards for her hit ‘Sepenuh Nyawaku’, and ‘Best Iban Song’ with ‘Andau Pengerindu’; while Karen’s chart-topper ‘Karam Ba Ati’ earned her the ‘Best Pop Song’, ‘Best Female Vocals’ and ‘Best New Artiste’ awards.

Masterpiece’s triple win consisted of the ‘Best Iban Album’ award for ‘Ngarap Ka Nuan Nikal Pulai’, and ‘Best Vocals for Duo or Group’ and ‘Best Performance’ awards for ‘Ngap Sayot’.

The rockers could have emerged the biggest winner of AMD 2016 had it not been for Bidayuh band Mezzavoce, whose number ‘Paded’ won the ‘Best Rock Song’ award – a category many Dayak music lovers expected Masterpiece to conquer.

For Kuala Lumpur-based Bidayuh singer Michael Gayut, his trip back to homeland was well worth it as he won ‘Best Single Song’ and ‘Best Male Vocal’ awards with ‘Kubur Cinta’.

“It feels good to be back home and winning this. I am also glad that there are such things as this prestigious award for Dayak music because it helps Dayak musicians,” he said when interviewed by hosts Salleh Mohidin and Diana Ann Sylvester at the event.

In other categories, the trio of Embat Lala, Monica Elen and Harry Usup Umbar took home the ‘Best Lyrics’ award, while Harrington Suring William won the ‘Best Music Video’ award.

Other winners were Hairee Francis (Best Music Arrangement for ‘Sepenuh Nyawaku’), Masan Kaya (Best Album Cover for Sullivan’s ‘Pengerindu Lama’), Ezra (‘Ezra’ for Best Bidayuh Album) and Carrie Geres (Best Bidayuh Song with ‘Tenggie Ku’).

Notably, three honourees received the prestigious ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’, which is a special recognition accorded to veteran Dayak musicians from the three main sub-ethnic groups – Iban, Bidayuh and Orang Ulu – for their immense contribution to Dayak music development.

The recipients were Lake Himang Anyie representing the Orang Ulus, Antonio Jawi representing the Ibans, and Cindy Nifkiman Ahid representing the Bidayuhs.

Meanwhile, popular actor of Bidayuh descent, Zachery Francis Ubu – known more popularly by his screen-name Zac X-Factor – received a special award for his accomplishment in acting. Prior to his transition to the screen, Zac was a member of a Malaysian boy-band sensation ‘X-Factor’.

The highlight of the awards night was the performance medley by popular Indonesian singer Cita Rahayu – more popularly known as ‘Cita Citata’.

The songstress’s energetic persona and mesmerising showmanship got things heated up, especially when performing her ‘dangdut’ hits ‘Goyang Dumang’, ‘Sakitnya Tuh Di Sini’ and ‘Perawan Atau Janda’.

Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Masing was present to officiate at the opening of the awards show.

“The AMD is definitely a good platform for Dayak musicians to develop their talents in performing arts such as music. This is because this award seeks to recognise and acknowledge the best of those involved in the Dayak music industry,” he remarked at a brief press conference held before main event.

Masing was accompanied by Assistant Minister for Agriculture Malcolm Mussen Lamoh, Julau MP Datuk Joseph Salang Gandum who is also 1M Sarawak Advisory Council chairman, Balai Ringin assemblyman Snowdan Lawan who is also Dama president, and Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) Women’s chief Dato Sri Doris Sophia Brodie.

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