This is one of the major problems in the industry. Infact, Liberia musicians are the poorest in the world. Music is not a playground nor do people just wake up to sing because of showing-off. The industry needs to put in measures to safe the face of every musician. It is bad idea of being broke and popular. Does popularity put food on your table? Will it help you to record another song. If care is not taking, the industry will ruin itself.
I do know that we have a broken industry but can’t we mend our brokenness. For every year that passes by, we say “We are getting better”. Are we really getting better? Are we ready to see our artists on some of the world’s biggest shows? This is a bad mindset. We have to grow up, and change the industry. Will it profit you being popular without money? That’s insanity to the highest degree. The whole industry needs to grow up with a high level of knowledge.
Inorder to solve some of these many problems, we need to setup factors of safety for our musicians. For every award show, there should be a percentage for all winners. You don’t go home empty-handed after you have won an award. If this does happen, it means that such institution is playing music. There must be a symbol of contract that is signed between entities to promote the music. Through these promotions, musicians can get a little amount to survive.
Musicians make money through selling of CDs, royalties, concerts and many other means but our musicians still struggle during this because there is no trust. Our musicians are hungry, broke and starving to death. Even an underground kid from Nigeria is richer than all of our big artists. Are they during music for free? Is it a free world? While other musicians are reaping from their talents, others are living in the state of dilemma.
Sometimes our artists perform freely. They’re not paid a dime. Even at times, they’re disrespected. I don’t believe they have people protecting them. There are no laws setup to protect the artists’ rights. They have been violated on a daily basis. When we have an artist from other countries during a show here, a lot of cash is being given but our own artists having nothing to eat.
I haven’t seen a Bugatti, Ferrari, Mayback, or Benz that is owned by a Liberian artist. Because of poverty, they’re living in a world full of greed. The benefits for Liberian artists are: Popularity and woman. Money is not prioritized. When will this silly attitude stop? If this continues to happen, poeverty will continue knocking on their doors. Let’s all learn to support our own.
I pity the industry. How I wish they would put things into place to protect the image of our artists. We have a wholesome of talents but they’re living in abject poverty. Some are in their 30s, and still thinking to be the next OBO, Wizkid, Shatta Wale etc.. How will their dreams come alive? How can we make this possible? Every promoter, artist, music lover, and expert needs to put hands on the desk to solve all of these problems.
Do we have record labels? If we do, do they make money? Are they filthy rich? If we do a comparative analysis between other countries and Liberia, you’ll understand that our entertainment is a playground but only the wise gets to see the hidden agenda. I think I should have named this piece “Liberian celebrities theory of being broke and popular”. Every celebrity in Liberia lives in poverty. They’re seen on the street on a daily basis. Are we serious?
- Create safety factors for our musicians.
- Create policies to promote their music.
- Create a platform for upcoming artists.
- Create laws to protect artists’ rights.
- Build theaters and not playgrounds.
- Companies should be in the promotion process.
- Create a national scene called “Liberia Got Talent” to spot young and talented artists.
- Create a connection between Liberia and other countries.
Scripted By: Edwin Olu Bestman Jr