Discussions about the relevance and objectivity of music awards have been ongoing for generations. Some argue that music awards are unfair, others believe that they play a crucial role in celebrating and boosting creativity. Regardless of your side of the argument, the GAFFA Awards are one of the most acclaimed in the Danish music scene. Interestingly, it is not some sophisticated board but the GAFFA readers themselves who select and vote for the nominees. The nominations cover the Danish and international music scene, with the winners revealed at the grand ceremony.
The 2020 edition will take place on 26. February in GAFFA’s hometown Aarhus, hosted by the renowned stand-up comedian Melvin Kakooza.
Rebecca Lou, Vola, When Saints Go Machine and Dizzy Mizz Lizzy have all been announced to perform at the Awards.
The votes are accepted until 31. January (you can vote here). We wonder who will get yours as we look through the long lists of nominations and try to make our choices.
Danish release of the year
2019 has been quite a fruitful year for Danish music. “The Ocean” by Go Go Berlin, “Bell of Wool” by Blaue Blume, “Amager Forbrænding” by Carl Emil Petersen, “Altid Sammen” by Efterklang, “Diamond Grid” by IRAH and “Superposition” by Kill J are just a handful of incredible albums that have been in heavy rotation in our playlists. It is so hard to choose!
Danish band of the year
This nomination includes a lot of our best-loved artists, too: Rebecca Lou, Lowly, Shy Shy Shy, When Saints Go Machine and more. It is especially heart-warming to see Blaue Blume on the list. They came back from a hiatus with incredible grace and most certainly have a lot to show.
Danish soloist of the year
Without a doubt, here one of our votes goes to Pleasure Raft. Finding out about The Attic Sleepers disbanding was disappointing, but Mathias Barfod continued to release music just as beautiful, special and moving. Another two votes are split to share, as there are so many great choices: from Penny Police, enchanting us with her latest album “Be Lucky”, Where Did Nora Go who came back with a lovely new EP at the end of 2019, our long-time favourites Kill J and Oh Land, to the emerging artist Ea Kaya.
New Danish name of the year
Out of many rising stars who were shining bright in 2019, Søren Manscher stood out to us. His debut album “Det er balancerne der holder sammen på det hele” is delicate, poetic and an absolute pleasure to listen to. Justifiably, it was also nominated for Danish pop release of the year.
Another amazing emerging artist is Ea Kaya, who has all the the potential to follow into MØ’s footsteps, but in her own rhythm and style. Rebecca Lou, with unapologetic attitude and energy, are also on the list of the most interesting new acts in the Danish music scene.
Other notable nominees are Søn, Jada and Mr. Koifish.
Danish hit of the year
When “Som Fluer” by The Minds of 99 came out, it did not sound particularly special compared to their older work. However, getting to hear it live at Royal Arena, made us comprehend the power of this song. “Vanilla” by Blaue Blume, “4AM” by Ea Kaya, “Bankende Hjerter” by Barselona and “Baglaens” by Lowly are other wonderful songs, and we hope that one of these takes the prize!
Danish live band of the year
The Minds of 99 took this award before and spent 2019 proving over and over again how much they deserved it. There is nothing quite like a Minds show – they are one of the most energetic and captivating bands in Denmark, and it would be understandable if they win in this category again. However, Go Go Berlin, Lydmor, Efterklang and MØ are strong competitors, each having an unparalleled stage presence and unique approach to live music. We were lucky to catch all of them live, and we can confirm that each of their concerts was remarkable.
Danish songwriter of the year
Carl Emil Petersen has long since won us over with his poetic lyrics and haunting metaphors. His sophomore solo album “Amager Forbrænding” was exactly what we hoped it would be. Getting to talk to him before his acoustic solo concert made one thing clear: he puts his heart and soul into songwriting, and, perhaps, in this category, that is the most important part.
Once again, the name of Blaue Blume comes up when we think of the most skilful songwriters in Denmark at the moment. With their latest album, they show the ability to build fragile and truly moving texts and melodies.
The same can be said about Penny Police, who also deserves attention and your vote in this category. She masterfully gets her message across through her lyrics without dramatising and making noise, and that really sticks with the listener.