Federation of Concerned Arts Professionals (FOCAP) has once again raised concerns on the current state of the creative art industry. In a post sighted on their president Facebook page, the agency which has the creative art industry at heart is perturbed at the current state of the industry hence addressing issues and suggesting solutions.
Below reads their concerns.
For the past 10years the Ghanaian Creative industry which use to be one of the most vibrant and a force to reckon with have seen a downward trend and if nothing is done about it we will become extinct like the dinosaurs.
*History of this Music Era.*
Ghana is Highlife and has always been Highlife but this Era started with a Genre called Hiplife in 1994 and this genre was the most sustained and commercially successful Genre held by and for the industry for a long Time.
It was a movement introduced by Reggie Rockstone which saw a lot of the youth involved in it and this created a lot of income for young musicians and industry players.
The growth transmogrified into seeing our Industry penetrating into various parts of the world with different brands to the extent that by 2006 Ghana courtesy Batman now Samini with a genre like Reggae won best African Act among top awards schemes like the MOBOs, MTV base and the Headies then.
We actually had the Channel Os and the MTV crew coming down to shoot documentaries on some of the top Brands like Tictac & Co.
Artist like VIP, Tictac, Obour and the rest had actually taken over the Nigerian & African market and Ghana was really on the rise.
All these achievements didn’t just happen overnight but it was by the Hard Work of some industry players like Bola Ray, KOD, Mark, Rudy Kwakye, Abeku Santana and others who collectively came together in a leadership role to make sure this industry works. They were dedicated to the course and their motivation was passion driven and also due to the fact that their financial returns made sense since all stakeholders involved including engineers and even errand boys profited from Work done.
In 2010 we saw the unlocking of the BET awards which saw Kojo Antwi opening the gates for the rest to follow.
Now for some reasons of ingratitude from subsequent Brands, disrespect and greed these gatekeepers quietly rolled back into their seats and allowed the Industry to be on autopilot.
Even though we’ve seen the likes of the Sarkodie, Stonebowy, Shattawale & the rest pushing it hard we can all attest to the decline of the Industry due to this major ingredient called LEADERSHIP which is missing in the industry.
We’ve seen more of the BETs to even the Grammys but we will attest to the fact that these were all individual brilliance but not that industry driven and this leads to the non sustainability of the system.
Today it’s Dancehall tomorrow it’s Azonto the next day Alkayeeda then we move to Afro dancehall and now we’re with Kumerica going to Asakaa and up coming Afro highlife and so on and so forth and with such inconsistencies and lack of direction who will take this Industry serious?
Interestingly some current industry players have tried taking that leadership role but due to lack of influence and their conflicts of interest as in also managing Artist they’re not able to command that needed RESPECT to lead the industry.
FOCAP after taking a critical look at our situation realized that the only way to get this industry back on the road is by bringing back these great guys who today are even in a better position to lead the way but have decided to stay off the industry in order to protect their brands from the unnecessary insults, disrespect and needless debates.
The Nigerians who use to come to them for directions are now leading the way for Africa and it’s due to the fact that their industry protected and respected their gatekeepers.
We must understand that expects work at a cost and therefore our individual brands must know that smaller revenue must be sacrificed to achieve greater revenues for the collective growth of industry and therefore the need to put GREED on the back burner.
Yes we have institutions like Musiga, Ghamro, GAPI etc but every industry needs that gatekeepers leadership role and it’s in every industry be it the Americas or the Naija’s so we can’t throw ours away and expect growth.
Fact is the Creative Industry is a privately driven industry and even if Government decides NOT to support us and we decide to do it ourselves we’ll succeed and when they do come on board we wouldn’t reject them as well.
We already know the capabilities of these players and we can guarantee that if we’re collectively able to get them off their seats once again into their overall suits trust us this Industry will be seen by the world once again as the go to industry especially looking at the countless talents in here and the better opportunities available today.
Fact is one person cannot be an Artist, Sound Engineer, his own manager, label and distributor and see the industry grow.
You need fish to get more fish so let’s put our greedy and selfish individual gears down and pick on the collective industry wear and get back to work for Posterity will be our Judge.
Divided we’ve fallen but Together We will Stand Once Again.