Singapore's Benjamin Kheng up for Best Southeast Asia Act at MTV Europe Music Awards

Singer-songwriter Benjamin Kheng is in the running for Best Southeast Asia Act at the 2020 MTV EMA. PHOTO: SONY MUSIC SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - Singer-songwriter Benjamin Kheng is in the running for Best Southeast Asia Act at the 2020 MTV EMA (Europe Music Awards).

The ceremony will be aired on MTV Asia (Singtel TV Channel 350, StarHub TV Channel 533) on Nov 9 at 9.40pm.

Fellow Singaporean and electronic music artist Jasmine Sokko won the prize in Spain last year (2019), beating out popular regional acts such as Malaysia's Yuna and Indonesia's Rich Brian.

EMA winners are decided by the public and fans can vote at this website.

Kheng, a member of home-grown pop quartet The Sam Willows, released his debut solo EP, A Sea That Never Stops, in June. It has garnered 2.5 million streams across various streaming platforms.

The Sam Willows were up for the same award in 2015, 2017 and 2018.

The 30-year-old singer says that he was surprised to be nominated alongside Indonesian singer-actress Agnez Mo and Filipino indie band Ben&Ben.

"If someone ever told me I'd get nominated in the same category as Agnez Mo and Ben&Ben, I would have shouted "fake news". It's an incredible honour to be in their esteemed company and I'm going to go eat a lot of ice cream to celebrate."

The other nominees are Malaysian hip-hop group K-Clique, Thai singer-actress Violette Wautier and Vietnamese singer Jack.

The Sam Willows, formed in 2011, have released a self-titled EP (2012) and two albums, Take Heart (2015) and I Know, But Where (2018).

Their music has topped the local iTunes music charts and the band have done gigs at festivals such as SXSW Festival in Austin, Texas, and SummerSonic in Tokyo.

Kheng, who released his debut single, Wicked, in November 2019, is expected to release his next single in early 2021.

He is also known for his acting.

His credits include roles in productions such as 2014's Ah Boys To Men: The Musical and Dick Lee's 2017 musical film Wonder Boy.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.