WHY we need to embrace, endorse, support and root for LOCAL digital innovations that are supporting LOCAL content creators.
By Plot Mhako
One of the key issues raised by artists in so many conversations is the lack of systems and lack of corporate support. A few days ago there was euphoria over an announcement from SPOTIFY on their expansion into 75 new territories and Zimbabwe is one. I will discuss the meaning and implications of that development on the local music scene in a separate post. Now i want to focus on local innovations.
There are a number of factors but one of the key reasons are their faith in local, investment in local, huge diaspora support, corporate support, local innovations and ultimately the numbers. These countries have great access to some of the largest international music distribution platforms from video to audio which they fully utilize. Their economies maybe more stable and fluid than ours.
Interestingly, what struck my attention is how these countries have developed and are growing their OWN & LOCAL music streaming, download and selling platforms. The likes of Boomplay Music, Ghaneely, Mdundo, Meplaylist, Mkito, My Muze, Orin, Simfy Africa, Smubu, UduX, MTN Tidal, Tigo Music, iRoking and many others which are relatively doing well.
Back in Zim the struggle is real. Our economy doesnt look well, online transacting is a pain, our music ‘industry’ is not really an industry. We have no data on sales, no stats on streams, no info on artist earnings, some do not even have bank accounts, some cant afford them but the talent is amazing.
We have had platforms likes xxxxxxxx xxxxxxx and a few ambitious ones that didnt run for long. Now we have a major corporate putting in money, a lot of it to develop a prime online store and streaming service for music and videos; Gateway Stream a product of Rainbow Tourism Group. Gateway Stream has for a while been hosting live concerts regularly, well invested quality live productions.
The platform has seen Winky D sharing the stage with Jah Prayzah, several other artists like Janet Manyowa, Ammara Brown, Tamy Moyo, Andy Muridzo, Sulu Chimbetu and soon Ishan, Poptain, Nutty O, Anita Jaxson will grace the platform. This is it! under lockdown and beyond this is what the industry had long since been longing for. A stable platform with a bankable corporate support.
Just thinking! A live concert costs $1USD / 0,86€ / £0,72 / R15 for two big artists. Imagine if we subscribe and watch in our numbers? More artists could be featured & the platform sustains. One can pay using Visa / Mastercards, USD to ZWL (ZWSwitch, Ecocash, Telecash, VPayment and OneMoney). The industry needs this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The ARTISTS, the diaspora and local audience are the key to the success of this platform. Look what happened with CLUBHOUSE, it has grown over 10 months in a phenomenal way because artists and the black community gave it all the support. Yes, there are challenges, limitations but its collective effort that can make this better and grow this.
We may be on lockdown for a lil longer, stay safe. Until next time, the plot thickens…
pics _ Events Evolution / Gateway Stream