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Get involved in fight for royalties – Mark Okraku Mantey

BY: Kofi Duah
Category:
Chairman of Creative Arts Council, Mark Okraku Mantey urges musicians to get involved in the fight for better royalties
Mark Okraku Mantey

Music producer and Chairman of the Creative Arts Council, Mark Okraku Mantey, is encouraging musicians to come together and fight for better royalties.

According to him, the Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO) alone could not take up the fight, and musicians need to get involved.

“The best way to fight for royalties is musicians coming together to fight for a common goal. For instance, the likes of Stonebwoy, Shatta Wale, Sarkodie, Samini, Amakye Dede, Daddy Lumba, Kojo Antwi, and all the top musicians can have one voice and demand for royalties from the radio and television stations who use their works.”

“In Ghana, the musicians rather have to pay the radio or television stations for playing their songs which is so wrong. Stonebwoy should be able to tell any radio station which uses his songs that he is demanding his royalties from them.”

“We cannot move forward if we don’t have a common voice. Why should musicians in Ghana struggle to survive with a lot of hit songs? Elsewhere, with just two hit songs, a musician can survive for the rest of his life,” he said.

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Mark Okraku Mantey spoke with Graphic Showbiz on the sidelines of a Masterclass organised by the Creative Arts Council on the topic, “Finding innovative ways to market Ghanaian music to the rest of the world,” at the Accra Tourist Information Centre on Tuesday, November 24.
 
The Masterclass, which had speakers such as Glyn Aikins, President of Sony Music; Dontae Winslow, music producer and composer; Coriya Burns, Senior Integrated Media at Radio One, USA and Malcolm Xavier, award-winning DJ who spoke via Zoom and they advised Ghanaian musicians to be business-minded with their craft.

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Vasti Jackson, an award-winning musician and guitarist who was at the event, said musicians must be creative and know their target audience.

“It is the duty of every musician to know their audience and give them want they want and if you are creative enough, your songs will always get you there,” he said.

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He advised artistes not to hype songs that could not stand the test of time. “It is not advisable to hype songs that are not good. After hyping the songs, they die in no time because they are not good. We should spend time on our songs and put in the right content to stand the test of time,” he said.

The event saw musicians including Krymi, Amerado and Jayana as well as some underground acts in attendance.