Musicians have been advised to make maximum use of data that is available to them in terms of where their listeners are in the world, when they listen to them, and how they even discover their music. This advice was given by Kwabena ‘Spikey’ Nkrumah, a digital expert, at a seminar dubbed: ‘Leveraging Digital Tools for Career Enhancement’, organised by the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA) in Kumasi on Tuesday, August 23.
The seminar is a Music in Africa Live Project supported by the Federal Foreign Office, Siemens Stiftung, and Goethe Institut.
Mr. Nkrumah indicated that with the growing appetite of consumers for content, artists should be sure they provide content that can engage their fans and others who would be interested in their music and other content they may generate. He spoke about talents here in Ghana who may not be megastars or known celebrities but who are generating decent revenues on YouTube.
Another resource person at the seminar, Prof. Emmanuel Osei Acheampong, in his presentation on ‘Building and Managing Your Brand’, advised participants to be mindful of their brand values, and uphold them at all times since that is what will ensure that they can monetise their brands. On his part, Ahuma Bosco Ocansey, who spoke about the ‘New Music Business’, said in this digital era, it is crucial for musicians and their managers to pay attention to the digital space. He noted that with revenues growing from streaming, musicians and their teams need to strategise effectively to take advantage of the opportunities available online to them.
In his address, the acting President of MUSIGA, Bessa Simons said: “Today, the music industry has changed so much from when some of us embarked on our careers nearly fifty years ago. In those days, the music business was different. With a good demo, you knew you could get a producer, and some front money and they would do the rest for you. If your song was good, you were on to a good time”. He added that: “These days, the business has changed. From your bedroom, you can distribute your music to various online stores, build your fanbase on social media, play online shows like we were doing during the COVID lockdown, and you can be making some money”.
On her part, the Ashanti Regional Chairperson of the union, Mad. Augustina Addison, applauded the national office of the union for organising the seminar in Kumasi, adding that the region is passionate about providing such education to their members to improve their lot.
The seminar was attended by over one hundred musicians from the Ashanti Region. Other participants included representatives from the Northern, Upper West, Upper East and Bono Regions.
The second leg of the seminar takes place in Accra on Friday, September 2. The event will also be streamed live on the Musicians Union of Ghana Facebook page and other platforms.