Creative Opinion: "The value of your music is worth a million pounds!"
In his latest instalment to SSFP's creative section, Zachary AJ brings a strong message to the blossoming artists of South Sudan - Ed.
This is a message to all our Junubin artists based in Juba, Bor Town, Nimule, and other small towns. If you never knew this then take note today: The value of your music is worth a million pounds!
Starting your musical journey as an independent artist is one of the hardest things you can do, especially when one is jobless. Paying the studios, promoting your songs, shooting videos and many other things are tough to deal with, but most of you guys have managed to do your thing independently for all this time. It might have cost you a lot!
We know it takes money and everything else to get your name on the list. 'Yes! You made it! You're finally famous in Juba, or maybe across South Sudan!'. However, the questions are; Are you making money out of your trending music? Do you even value your music? Do you know how much those who love it benefit from it? Or more generally, how do you make things work?
If you're not making money out of your music, how will you pay the studio the next time you want to record another album!?
How do you promote your music and develop publicity as an independent artist?
How do you finance video shoots with nothing in your account, or no account at all?
You must know the value of your music. This is the only way you can make it 100% profitable. Having recorded a beautiful song that you know fans will love, sit in your room, get some snacks, chill with Netflix and wait for the cash.
Event organisers and promoters will hit your phone, they want you at their gigs as they know the fans will love you. Remember, though, that they've got to pay you to attend. If you're not booked, their shows will be boring and the fans will hate them. These promoters have no choice but to do whatever it takes to make their shows lit. See that chain!
So, here's how you make things work:
1. You've got to remember that being an artist is an occupation. You've got to make it profitable in every way possible.
2. Don't ever call promoters or events organisers to beg for favours, it's never necessary! You don't need them at all, they need you!
3. Learn to be rare, learn to value yourself and your work because you're not doing it for them, it's for yourself!
4. Find a job that allows you to focus on making and producing good music. Your records will pay you back when you're doing right!