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African Music tops agenda at Midem Forum


MIDEM African Forum: Eze Ezegozie, Yoel Kenan, Oye Akideinde, Ade Bantu speak at conference in Lagos: Photos –

Midem African Forum recently debuted in Lagos, where it explored ways to build connections for African music to travel, as well as structure the value chain. The event, which gathered industry influencers, lawyers, venture capitalists, and government agencies, saw participants discuss on the potential of Nigeria’s burgeoning music industry and the growth potential of African music within the wider international market. It also focused on the way forward for the African music industry, as it continues to grow and spread globally.

Held under the theme, Building connections to allow music to travel, the first panel included the likes of Ade Bantu, musician, activist and CEO Afropolitan vibes; Oye Akideinde, GM Operations for Boomplay; Yoel Kenan, CEO Africori; Joel Hanson, OAP/ Media executive and Eze Ezegozie, MD, Universal Music, West Africa. It was an interactive session where the panelists discussed the problems and challenges facing the continent’s music scene.

Meanwhile, Yoel Kenan identified the lack of infrastructure in the industry, while Ade Bantu is of the opinion that these are exciting times for African Music. He also noted that mobility funding remains a cancer in the progression of our sounds as only few artists had the financial ability to embark on tours across Africa. The panel also discussed the rate at which African acts are seeking validation from the West, calling for unity amongst artistes that goes beyond the hype.

The session ended with observers noting that African music is already travelling due to technology and the social media space, but the bigger problem is not just the sound, but the content being offered and how acceptable it is.

The second session had Akinyemi Ayinoluwa, Taiye Aliyu of Effizy Music, Chinedu Chukwuji, who represented Copyright Society of Nigeria (COSON) and Akotchaye Okio, International Development Officer for Africa at SACEM, a collective society in France.

Panelists on this session focused on Structuring the value chain to grow music business locally and globally. It also treated issues around healthy engagements on intellectual and copyright laws, rights of the artiste and prudent ways by which their can protect and make money off their music globally.

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