Highlife artist slams Ghana music bodies

The most important organisations for Ghanaian music professionals have been criticised. According to highlife artist Kwaisey Pee, Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA) and Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO) are to blame for the current state of Ghanaian music. While on a media tour in the closing days of February, the artist said MUSIGA and GHAMRO are responsible for “the absence of certain vital structures needed to make the music industry as robust as possible and worthy of emulation by other music societies and organizations in other African countries."

Kwaisey Pee has criticised Ghana's music unions
Kwaisey Pee has criticised Ghana's music unions

For this reason it is difficult to safeguard the wellbeing and financial future of Ghanaian musicians who, as claimed by the singer, have warned their children off taking up music as sole career.

“Ghanaian musicians can’t advise their children to go into it,” he said in an interview on Atinka 104.7FM with Odeefour, host of Atinka Showbiz, “because there are no proper structures and they know the suffering they go through and sometimes the sacrifices they make to put smiles on the faces of their fans by recording songs for them to enjoy. So they fear to see their children go through the same predicament.”

The claims were made during an interview on the media tour. Some of the problems, according to Kwaisey Pee, are a lack of help “in the career growth of the musician,” and the absence of “tight systems to check and track the use of musicians’ musical works and collect royalties for them.”

Kwaisey Pee’s comment are far from new as in the past, both MUSIGA and GHAMRO have come under fire for the lack of vital structures needed to make the Ghanaian music industry robust, and capable of supporting out of work musicians. There have also been complaints about both organisations lack of a structure that helps hospitalised artists. It was perhaps for this reason MUSIGA made public its plan to assist elderly musicians.

"We are giving the aged something every month aside their royalties," said Deputy Chairman of MUSIGA Ahmed Bande. Those who are 60 years and above, persons with disability and those who are not well...will receive GHc100 ($25) every month."

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