Ghanaian musicians have been advised to join and support the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA). This is in view of current developments in the industry which will require among other things strong unions and effective collecting agreements with users of music. According to Thomas Dayan of the International Federation of Music (FIM), with physical sales of music going down and streaming and other digital services on the increase, musicians are not receiving commensurate compensation.
Speaking at the Music Business Seminar organized by MUSIGA as part of this year’s Ghana Music Week Festival, Mr Dayan indicated that even when top acts like Pharell Williams chalked 43 million streams for his smash hit “Happy” he received a measly $2,700. He added that a survey conducted in Europe revealed that of over 3,000 performers who took part in a survey, 65% declared that they had received no income or had received less than 5% of their incomes from internet distribution.
He therefore suggested that in addition to having strong union, other measures musicians could initiate to protect their interests include seeking a change in the copyright laws.
Another speaker at the seminar, Oumar Diagne an international event consultant, booking agent and artiste manager advised Ghanaian musicians to carefully choose their managers and ensure that these managers have the required skills to manage their careers to ensure that they can develop their full potential. Mr Diagne advised musicians aspiring to go international to develop their fan base and also create hit songs in Ghana.
This year’s music business was on the topic “Talk Music Business – The West African Experience.” Participants at the seminar included musicians, artiste managers and other industry players.
This year’s Ghana Music Week is under the theme “The Role of Music in Promoting Tourism.”