Musicians from Malawi, Rwanda and Tanzania in songwriting awareness camp

Musicians from Malawi, Rwanda and Tanzania recently embarked on a music rights awareness songwriting camp to support music creators in Africa and to educate them on their rights. 

Danny Vumbi and Oda Paccy
Danny Vumbi and Oda Paccy

This Songwriting Camp is part of the ‘Music Rights in Africa’ project whose aim is to support music creators in Africa and to educate them on their rights. It was organised by Music Rights Awareness, a foundation founded by songwriters Max Martin, Niclas Molinder and Bjorn Ulvaeus of ABBA. Its mission is to increase music creators’ awareness of music rights.

Tanzania’s Barakah The Prince and Malawi’s Lulu travelled to Kigali to work with Rwandan music creators and performers Danny Vumbi, Oda Paccy and Nicolas for a two day songwriting camp organized by Music Rights Awareness (MRA). The songwriting camp project started in June 2016 in three countries namely Malawi, Rwanda and Tanzania. It is a partnership with PACSA (the Pan-African Composers and Songwriters Alliance) and local partners MUM (Musicians Union of Malawi), RAI (Rwanda Arts Initiative) and Rockstar4000.

The songwriting camp’s objective was to produce a song with artists from those three countries and to follow all the rights (royalties) that the song will generate in their countries digital marketing.

In a statement about the project, Niclas Molinder said, “Being able to have these creators as ambassadors of Music Rights Awareness demonstrates our continued desire to work with Africa’s most talented music creators and increase music rights awareness in Africa.”

The project provided a platform for artists to share their musical skills and experiences as well as challenges they face in their musical careers and in receiving their music rights.

MUM president, Reverend Chimwemwe Mhango, said Lulu was selected because he has advanced skills in composition and production.

“We wanted someone who is good at composing, singing and dancing and Lulu fits this bill. He is also an excellent guitarist and still young. This is the beginning of these projects. We even intend to hold shows in these three countries and involve several artists,” Mhango said.

 “We are thrilled by this opportunity and thanks to Music Rights Awareness, we believe African writers can and should be on par with worldwide writers in terms of having the same knowledge, structure and eventually financial benefits” commented Tanzanian artist The Prince.

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