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Day experts brainstormed on Nigerian music

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Attendees & Organisers Of The Music Export Nigeria MEXN Masterclass Held In Lagos Recently

To the teeming Nigerian music artists, mentoring has been a great issue. Also, lack of exposure to trends in the music industry internationally is believed to be greatly militating again their development and growth, hence the organisation of a one-day training for musicians and other stakeholders.

Showbiz promoter, Mr Ayoola Sadare is among several other stakeholders recently, using his outfit, Inspiro Productions,  organised the training to address some of the challenges upcoming entertainers face in attracting desired national and international attention, as well as taking their works to the level it deserves.

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The training, tagged Music Export Nigeria (MEXIN), was birthed after visits to several European countries. The visits he said, afforded him insight into the current global best practices in the creative and cultural industry. Also, Sadare disclosed that the initiative would find ways to prepare, and empower them to see their crafts as export materials as is done through Music Export Offices in other countries.

Sadare who is the founder, Lagos International Music Festival (LIJF), noted that music is a strong cultural expression that showcases a country’s identity, adding that musicians are invariably,cultural ambassadors. This, he said, is evident “on the numerous festivals, show and event platforms globally where a lot of acts from various countries are well represented. But, representation from Nigeria is not appreciable.”

For the training, the entertainment experts assembled a host of other entertainment gurus to impart on participating artists and musicians such as tue Performing Musicians Association, Mr. Pretty Okafor and Mr. Matthew Ohio, who is the Chief Executive Officer, EI Carnaval and founder, Industry Nite Nigeria.

Others included the founder, Ten String Music Institute & Black Fragrance Nigeria, the Director, SPAN Academy of Jazz and Contemporary music,  Mr. Bright Gain and Tope Sadiq.

In his session, the PMAN President said it was needful for upcoming artists and musicians to create a distinct identity for themselves. He urged them to be unique, drift away from the norm and refrain from being boring. He encouraged young artists to invest and believe in themselves. Another quality which he said is necessary for entertainers to grow is stagemanship. Okafor asserted that Nigeria has got “more performing artists who can represent the whole of African. But, we have to get it right”. He described a musician as an intellectual and international, even as he charged them to “know the truth, reveal the truth and stand by the truth”.

In his lecture entitled: Musicians Without Borders, Akapo regretted that Nigeria with the population of about 180m, music export is yet, insignificant. He listed a couple of militating factors that have hindered the development, growth and export of Nigerian music.

These he said, are “lack of government sponsorship for community, state and even carnivals instituted by the central government, lack of grants for local Arts groups, there are no robust policies and framework to support artist.

“For instance, the need to protect intellectual properties. Does an average judge care about protecting intellectual property? What does the judge know about intellectual property? Does the average judge in Nigeria understand about intellectual property?

At best, when an artist cries about his intellectual work, the Nigerian judge would simply say; ehh, go and make another work! It is as bad as that.”

Speaking from his wealth of experience in promoting the creative and cultural industry both locally and internationally, Emmanuel Akapo contended that the time has come to restructure music management in the country. He held that the industry will be better if more businessmen and technocrats are given the opportunity to manage the sector. He raised some points on growing Nigeria’s musical content and exporting same.

“There is need to build the network. We need to export Nigeria music across Africa. This is pertinent. We do not have the platform to sell what we have in Nigeria. The musicians have to come together. We have never had a government that has set up a structure for the entertainment/creative industry to thrive. Ask Buhari what is the prospect in music, he does not know,” he said.

He condemned the fast-track tendencies in money-making and contended that, “in Nigeria, there are three major ways of making quick money –religious, political and stealing”. He further gave some recipes through which artist and musicians can create and build irresistible brands. These he said, include the artists creating and offering the international community local content, spiced with African rhythm including the percussion.

The dances, costumes must be laced with a touch of Africanism. And then, build a magical stage craft. He urged them to build a platform and be willing to give out.

The post Day experts brainstormed on Nigerian music appeared first on Tribune.

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