The German Music Industry Association has finally abolished its ECHO Awards after the world-wide indignation about the award given to rap duo Kollegah and Farid Bang, who used anti-semitic, misogynist, homophobe lyrics, contemptuous of human dignity. Numerous artists had returned their awards, and presumably nobody would ever again have accepted such an award.
The brand ECHO has been damaged so strongly that the Association announced a new award in all three categories, classical, pop and jazz. The awards are to be transferred in an own new structure. In the course of that, the groups involved up to now will also end their activity. The criteria of the nomination and price assignment are to be changed entirely.
The president of the ‘International Classical Music Awards’, Remy Franck commented on the decision to abolish the ECHO price: « We welcome the abolition of the ECHO, that was one home-made award given by the industry itself, and thus kind of a crooked artifice. Alongside ICMA, the only international and completely independent price, there is space for national awards. Together with our Jury they can contribute to the promotion of the music industry. But ultimately, the credibility and the value of the price is depending on the independence of the jury. Whether this will be guaranteed for the successors of the ECHO, remains to be seen. »