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9 April 2022
How Best Promoters And Artists Can Work
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3 months ago

How Best Promoters And Artists Can Work

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Is it lack of professionalism or just stubbornness?  This is a question that rings on your mind when one hears about the news of Ugandan artists failing to perform at concerts they have been paid to showup or even promoters who post artists they haven't booked for their events. Of recent there has been news making rounds of one Pallaso not performing at a concert dispite his arrival, apparently the sound system mysteriously stopped working. Whether that's true or not we are not here to pin Him. This article rather suggests on how we could make the industry better by sharing ideas on how best promoters and artists can work together. Unity isn’t a very complex idea and neither is teamwork. But when you talk about teamwork, the music industry as a whole probably isn’t the first thing that comes to your mind.


For instance how many times have we returned home from a concert and thought of how exactly did they managed to pull it off? Locally, I can credit Bebecool and Maurice kirya probably because they micro manage their concerts. While others we would probably credit the band(s) for their stellar performances or how the sound and light setup was great. Rarely do we credit the whole team for the event. The fact of the matter is that the event wouldn’t have been half as great as it was if the two main players in this scenario,that is to say  the Artists and the Promoters didn’t work well as a team. A successful gig without the two getting along and coming together as a team is safe to say "IMPOSSIBLE".
The music industry, as a whole, isn’t that big and in a country like ours, the demographics change to a great extent.

It further becomes complex when you talk about the Independent music scene. It is a fairly small scene. With a population of just over 40 million there are  few bands/artists and fewer people to program gigs for them, at least when compared to the scene of very active performing arts like Nigeria in Africa. So it is very important that the promoters and the artists get along. It is also unrealistic to expect so many people with so many different sets of ideas to get along all the time.

Realistically the Artist and the promoter relationship isn’t a simple, especially when one or both the parties are new to the business. Artists complain about the promoters and vice versa. And all this could be for various reasons. Some may be valid and some, not so much. Often, it is because one does not understand or empathize with the other. Other times, it’s because one does not want to be willing to be a little understanding. After making research here some ideas artist and promoters can borrow.


Respect each other: It’s simple. You respect people and they respect you. It’s the most basic thing expected out of anyone. But somehow, a lot of promoters, new and old take artists for granted. If you’re one of them, it’s time to change your attitude. Nobody wants to work with someone who cannot respect his subordinates, let alone any self-respecting musicians. There are also some artists who can be really difficult to work with because of their unrealistic demands and high-handedness. So a bit of courtesy and professionalism while dealing with people you work with will go a long way.

Requirements of the Production: promoters should Communicate about the band’s  or atleast the lead artist's requirements as far as the sound setup is concerned. It will not always be possible to meet every requirement but try. At times when the promoters can’t provide the artists with the said gear, something equivalent instead could be suggested. At times, one or the other or both the sides will have to reach a consensus by compromising on some requirements.

Don’t ask the artist to pay to play: This is a very weird concept as it is,  but it is even more absurd when you want artists to pay to showcase. Especially for our young industry with sprouting talent day in day out. All they need is support.

Promotions: You’ll often come across promoters/venues who don’t promote the show as much as they should. It’s solely expected out of the artists to promote the event and get the crowd. Sometimes, it’s vice versa. This is one of the responsibilities that ought to be shared by both, the artist(s) and the promoter(s). That’s the only way you can have a wider reach and in turn, have a larger audience at the concet.

keep time : Delays and changes in the schedule are very common. if possible Avoid that. Promoters need to give the time slots to the venue, production team and the artists well in advance. Have buffer time in case of minor delays. The artists need to show up on time. There cannot be any excuses here.

Sound-check: Promoters need to make sure that each one of the bands has ample time to do a proper line check with at least a couple of bands getting to check their sounds before the show starts. While as artists or even managers , it’s your responsibility to do a quick and tight sound-check. 

Don’t Rush leave the venue after your performance: A lot of performers tend to forget that there are other performers who were there to watch them perform. when you have the time  Stay back and watch the other artists perform. At the very least, it shows that you respect your peers and support them. It puts you in the good books in your music community.

Have a written contract and respect the terms & conditions: The biggest mistake most promoters and artists do is not have a written contract. And that’s a wrong and a very risky way to conduct business. Make sure that you have all the terms & conditions written down and signed by the promoter and the representative of the artist. This is very important, for when one or the other goes back on his word, you can always contest that. So make sure to have a contract for the event and honour it.


 


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