BIG PAY­DAY for AKA and co

CityPress - - News - NTOMBIZODWA MAKHOBA [email protected]­

Christ­mas came early for some artists af­ter re­ceiv­ing a pay­out from the In­de­pen­dent Mu­sic Per­for­mance Rights As­so­ci­a­tion (Im­pra) – a col­lect­ing so­ci­ety for mu­si­cians.

Rap­per Kier­nan “AKA” Forbes, Sello “Chicco” Twala, Mzwakhe Mbuli, Babsy Mlan­geni, William Mthethwa, Fred­die Gwala, Blondie Makhene, Papa Makhene, Sizwe Zakho, Bheki and his wife Li­nah Ng­cobo, and the late Jabu Khany­ile were an­nounced as the top 12 ben­e­fi­cia­ries of the nee­dle time or air­play roy­al­ties in Jo­han­nes­burg on Fri­day.

The pay­ment was for songs played across all 18 SABC ra­dio sta­tions be­tween 2014 and 2015 only.

It was an­nounced in June that the SABC had dis­charged mil­lions to Im­pra to pay nee­dle time or air­play roy­al­ties to the song­writ­ers and per­form­ing artists.

This is the first time mu­si­cians re­ceived their nee­dle time roy­al­ties – thanks to Im­pra.

AKA, who was the youngest artist in the room, chal­lenged Min­is­ter of Arts and Cul­ture Nathi Mthethwa to come up with pro­grammes that would help artists to save money and not die as pau­pers.

Mthethwa said these le­gends had been in the in­dus­try for many years, yet they had noth­ing to show for it.

He said it was im­por­tant that the col­lect­ing so­ci­eties did not rob artists of their money “be­cause when they do that it is a crim­i­nal of­fence”.

“We are go­ing to in­tro­duce a tri­bunal that will han­dle artists’ dis­putes and mat­ters re­lated to copy­rights and other things that af­fect artists. The tri­bunal will be per­ma­nent and it will have no less than seven judges,” Mthethwa said.

Al­though the amount of money paid to the artists was not dis­closed at the me­dia brief­ing, all the artists agreed that their “lives would not be the same again”.

Khany­ile’s wife, Khu­l­uliwe, who ac­cepted a mock cheque on be­half of her late hus­band, said she was smil­ing for the first time since his death in 2006.

“Life hasn’t been easy since my hus­band passed away. Even though he left eight hit al­bums, no money showed in my bank ac­count. I was strug­gling fi­nan­cially and this is the first time I have re­ceived a roy­al­ties pay cheque.

“My house was al­most re­pos­sessed be­cause of de­fault­ing bond in­stal­ments. With the money I have re­ceived from Im­pra, I am go­ing to make sure I pay the money that I owe to the bank. My life will not be the same again,” said the emo­tional mother of five.

Artists had the op­por­tu­nity to en­gage with the min­is­ter to tackle chal­lenges they face in the in­dus­try.

Pay­ola and piracy were two burn­ing is­sues the artists high­lighted.


PAY DAY AKA re­ceives a mock cheque of his roy­al­ties – handed over by Min­is­ter of Arts and Cul­ture Nathi Mthethwa and Im­pra’s Tha­bang Mathibe

Blondie Makhene does a lit­tle jig as he re­ceives his cheque JUBILATION

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