Kenya has in the past years witnessed tremendous growth in music with groups like Sauti Sol being feted on International platforms, artistes like Nyashinski and Khaligraph also making it to the AFRIMA nominations list this year.
Unfortunately the growth in the continental and national music has not been in tandem with the growth of artistes.
While local media houses grow their ratings and audiences by playing the great music produced and done by the Kenyan artistes, most of them are not giving back by paying royalties to the Music Copyright Society.
This is despite other countries in Africa registering steady growth in royalty collection.
Royalty payment has in the recent past caused an uproar among the artistes who are oblivious of the challenges that the copyright group is facing in collecting royalties.
At the funeral of Musician John DeMathew’s funeral President Uhuru Kenyatta to honour the artistes by paying their royalties.
And as Kenya joins the rest of the continent in marking the Africa Copyright And Management Day, the Music Copyright Society is on Saturday planning to visit various media houses to engage them on the status of royalty collection and the importance of paying royalties.
“This is the second edition of Africa Copyright and Collective Management Day. This day is celebrated to draw attention to the vibrant contributions of creators and copyright to the lives of millions throughout Africa and beyond,” said MCSK CEO Micah Kulati.
Accompanying the MCSK officials to the media houses will be at least 20 artistes including MCSK Ambassador and Julius Owino popularly known as Majimaji.
“There s need to get copyright laws and gains to improve the lives of musicians across Africa and we can only do this by creating awareness tomorrow on need the need to pay royalties,” said Majimaji.
“#TheMusicBusKE will see artistes play very loud music in a very hot matatu (Nganya) to create music awareness. So I call on all the other musicians to join us in the hashtag and help us create the awareness,” said Majimaji.
Under the hashtag #TheMusicBusKE the team will seek to engage the media managers in a round table talk in a bid to get them realise the need of dutifully paying the royalties.
Some of the media houses MCSK is planning to visit are Radio Africa Limited, Royal Media services, Nation Media Group, Media Max and the Standard media Group.