MOBOs’ Global Expansion

The organisers of the UK’s Music Of Black Origin awards are looking at global expansion and the first target is reported to be Berlin.

The Independent On Sunday says the awards – which celebrate music of black origin by artists of any nationality – are also looking at venues in South Africa and Singapore.

“Europe seems to be the logical next step, and Berlin would be our first choice as there is a distinct hunger for urban music out there,” MOBO founder Kanya King told the UK weekend paper.

“There is a huge R&B influence from the U.S. soldiers that were stationed in Berlin, it’s very cosmopolitan. Global expansion would offer a welcome addition to our UK activities.”

The move could be controversial. Last year was the first time the awards ceremony was staged outside London, and its critics claimed the Glasgow show couldn’t find enough stars interested in traveling to Scotland.

This year’s awards will be held at the Liverpool Echo Arena Oct. 20, following a pro-Merseyside campaign on Facebook.

Rapper Tinie Tempah leads the way in the nominations with four nods. The 21-year-old south Londoner is up for best song for debut single “Pass Out” and best video for follow-up “Frisky,” as well as best newcomer and best UK act.

U.S. stars Rihanna, Black Eyed Peas, Beyoncé and Alicia Keys are all nominated in the best international category, but it is not yet known whether any will perform at this year’s awards.