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We’ve wasted so much time with our music industry — Bessa Simons

Music producer and acting President of the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), Bessa Simons, says Ghanaians have wasted so much time with the music industry.

He bemoaned the inability of consecutive stakeholders to put in place structures to tackle major problems facing music distribution in the country.

Speaking on TV XYZ’s Legends with Agyemang Prempeh, the celebrated highlife musician blamed past leaders of the industry for their failure to protect the intellectual property of musicians.

“We have wasted so much time with our music industry. We should have long done too many things, put structures in place. Let’s take our copyright and royalties laws. This is how it is when a musician composes a song, he needs to register the work, then join the Ghana Music Right Organisation (GHAMRO).

“GHAMRO is like the PR for musicians because when you churn out a song you can’t go rounds for your monies and that birthed the organisation. You will tell them, this is my song, this person played this, that person played that. Every music is given a unique code. It’s long overdue but they did not put the structures in place in Ghana. So recently, we’ve started the process. What happens is when the music is played everywhere in the world, they will calculate and send your money to GHAMRO,” he said on Legends on Sunday, August 23, 2020

Also, Mr. Bessa Simons suggested the logging system is needed to take accounts of music airplay on our airwaves.

He explained that the software will help musicians get their due royalties from commercial radio stations who play their music.

“The logging system, they started with GBC and then it went dead. Logging system is like when there are six hundred radio stations in the country which plays your song, when they log in, it will record in the GHAMRO software. Meanwhile, they have graded the radio stations based on its capacity and the duration its being played, so, at the end of every six months they take all the records and pay the musician. For instance, if my ‘Belembe’ gets played, at least I know it will be played six times a week at the various regions, when they tally my GHS2 they render account to me,” he said.

The 63-year-old called on government to provide financial assistance to the various bodies to implement the copyright polices since the machinery needed is expensive.

“Normally, the countries that has implemented such policies, the government provides financial support because the government gets revenue from its implementation. Government generate a lot of money and I’m surprised successive governments of Ghana doesn’t know these simple solutions.”

By: Bernard Ralph Adams /Mypowerfmonline.com/Ghana

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