Nigerians’ understanding of ‘investment and its benefits’ in show business is quite different from ours. These are the people following the strict rules of becoming successful showbiz people.
But here in Ghana, we believe there’s NO MONEY in the industry. We believe our predecessors never made money, they are broke, and so on. We believe there’s no money in the industry so there’s no need to invest in our art.
Investment is the key. These Nigerians are taking over our market because of investment.
In my last interview with DJ Mensah, he told me when he’s playing in the (Ghanaian) clubs, Nigerians come to him, tip him and ask him to repeat Nigerian songs. And it’s the truth. Nigerians are everywhere in our clubs and pubs, on radio and TV stations giving tips to get their songs aired over and over again.
I have witnessed this myself. My own friend (name withheld) was paid tens of thousands of cedis to promote Mayorkun’s hit song “Mama”. My friend was on the streets, pubs, clubs, radio and TV stations giving huge tips. The least he gave was like 1,000 cedis. And guess what, that song is one of the biggest songs in this country.
Last two weeks, Mayorkun was in this country and performed at three different venues in one night. He’s reaping the benefits, right? That is an investment for you.
Secondly, we have to attack our topsy-turvy system instead of Nigerians. Nigerians are innocent for God sake!
Wizkid, Patoranking, Timaya, and all the innocent people we are attacking have done nothing. The only wrong they did is INVESTMENT. These guys are pumping money into their career because they believe in it and that’s why they are making it big.
Even these same artistes are giving our artistes hits in terms of collabos. Just check Sarkodie’s hits for the past 3-4 years – they are full of Nigerians. These people are partially holding down our industry.
Let’s attack our system and the people making things hard for our artistes to reach the top. Radio DJs are being underpaid. Some receive as little as 300 cedis monthly so what do you expect? They can easily be influenced by the Nigerians to play their music.
We spent GHC 2 million on research and we don’t even have a 2-metre square national recording studio that will give discounts to up and coming musicians to record their breakthrough songs.
There’s no support system for our musicians even though we have MUSIGA, GHAMRO, Audiovisual Rights Society of Ghana (ARSOG), Creative Arts Council, etc.
Attack the system that allows 50-70% foreign music on our radio and TV stations – attack the system that underpays our DJs – attack the system that can’t track airplay and pay royalties to our artistes – attack the system that can’t create laws that would favour us more than foreigners – attack the corrupt system!
And if you want to talk about individual investors, I will say check yourself and your attitude. Some of our artistes are so ungrateful, disrespectful, egoistic, arrogant and can’t be trusted so no one will lend them money to invest in their music. Our artistes can’t say a common ‘thank you’ to sound engineers, bloggers, promoters, and DJs for helping their songs to explode. They will rather diss them so how do you get their help?
Attacking and beefing Nigerians won’t solve the problem. Leave them alone, they are innocent!!!
David Mawuli, is a Ghanaian journalist and blogger