User Review( votes)
As night falls in Africa, thousands of people flood the clubs all hoping to enjoy the beats from their favourite Afrobeat stars. The African music industry has become a force to reckon with globally. Using social media, from Instagram to YouTube, African musicians are gaining recognition continentally and globally. The exploding popularity of African artist has promoted a rise of musical collaborations between Africans and the western countries. These collaborations have over time earned Grammy nominations as well as awards. Consequently, the 2019 edition of Grammy awards has four African act dominating the Best World Music Album categories. The nominees include the Soweto Gospel Choir (South Africa), Seun Kuti & Egypt 80 (Nigeria), Fatoumata Diawara (Mali) and Bombino (Niger). The only act from outside Africa nominated in the same category is the Russian group Yiddish Glory.
From all over the continent, African music has been rich in sound and quality. The Nigerian music industry has recorded the most viewed African YouTube music video in 2018. With Falz “This is Nigeria” leading with 5.2 million views on YouTube. Likewise, Diamond Platnumz whose music has successfully transcended beyond Tanzania and made himself a household name in Nigeria. These music stars are selling out concert venues in New York, Paris and London, and performing at major music festivals.
Over time, iconic music labels have signed up several Afrobeat stars. But that doesn’t mean the artists themselves are all benefitting from the attention. Because of weak legal protections for intellectual property, piracy remains rampant, making it near impossible for artists to make money from actually selling their music, leaving live shows and endorsements as the major revenue streams. This is one of the problems the African continent has to fix in the music industry. While Afrobeats is becoming a global sensation, the local opportunity remains too big to be ignored.