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Music Industry Unions | Local Authorities | Should Focus on Grassroot Talent Development Programs

Written by on 4th Jun 2021


There has been so much talk about the need for platforms where music artists can be showcasing their talents on a regular basis. Some had even suggested running Talent scouting programs that have some form of longevity. Others had looked at the formats adopted by various sporting codes and made the argument that its time music industry itself has its own form of tournaments.

Whichever approach one adopts in talent development, everyone certainly agrees that there’s a need for consistent Talent development programs that could elevate the status of the music industry. This is why many have called on local authorities to be fully involved in the development of music art. Others have lent their voices to call on music unions who are large beneficiaries of the works of the artist to be more involved in grassroots talent development programs.

Oversight for Talent Development in Music Industry

Let’s take a look at some of the scenarios in the music industry and reflect on some genuine approach that’s capable of making a much-desired impact as it relates to talent development.

1. Methods for Scouting Talents in Music Industry

I have been on the lookout for specific methods for which record labels can apply when scouting artists. Recently there hadn’t been that much it seems. There had been talks of the underground artists sharing their music for free on social media and other free music sharing platforms. But the real question here is, what’s the most appropriate method of scouting music artists that can be sustainable and beneficial to both the artist and the music industry at large?

Talent scouting methods have not been thoroughly defined by anyone in the music business. The various thoughts surrounding this topic are dependent on who is providing the answer. And the more attractive method for scouting talents will be gauged by the results each applicable method has proven. Do competitions link the Morgeez Rap Battles and others such as the Idols are great ways but are these enough to cater to the vast pool of upcoming talents?

2. What are the Parameters Used by Record Labels to Sign Artists?

It is now very clear that the systems in place, if any, for recruiting new talents to record labels are just as slim as though there ain’t any. We only wake up to see a new music video from that other record label by just another artist. But how do they came about discovering these talents has remained mysterious since the days of Bobby Brown where there were local Talent shows everywhere and every time.

The talent scouting responsibility is somehow shifted to the Record labels. But would this solve the problems of absorbing the many talents roaming around without any place to fix themselves, so they can also have the opportunity to utilize their talents? This is why so many have argued that the responsibility of creating multiple talent scouting platforms should not be loaded on the record labels alone. Because record labels have taken up a larger role already in the music industry. Hence some even called music industry unions, and governmental institutions such as the department of arts and culture to be fully dedicated to programs of talent development.

Music Competitiveness - Focal point for talent development
Music Competitiveness – Focal point for talent development

3. Talent Developmental programs deployed by record labels:

As stated above, fans or the public hardly know most of the artists onscreen these days, and to compound, the situation is the fire and fury with which new music flood the internet. But if we want to give the fans, quality music as they deserved and most importantly if we love the craft of music; wouldn’t it be nice to have proper talent development structures put in place?

Which record labels have what form of development activities reminiscent of any of the sporting codes that would be remarkably efficient in developing the talent and the mentality of the artists? Fact, this is where the music industry unions and the related government agency need to put their hands on deck.

4. Impact of self publishing, promotion and distribution:

Many indie artists has taken the bull by the horn. Self distribution, self publishing, self promotion etc. What do all of these really means? Is this some kind of answer to a music industry that looks like an abandoned project ?

What percentages of these self project actually translate into economic gains for the artists?
Or have the artists, fallen for the corporate bait of self-destruction dangled on them by these multinational Apps? This is one of the areas in the music industry that has exacerbated the call for more talent development programs.

There’s credible believes that with more talent development programs in place that focus on both performances and the business of music in detail, the artists or talents would have a better knowledge of how to improve in this self-management process to the extent their efforts could translate into viable business modules.

That been said, this is why the music unions who most parts of their revenues depend on the works of the music artists, really need to come on board when it comes to talent development programs.

5. Breaking the circle of imposing talents:

Quickly,  this statement means how can there be more transparency in the music released to the public. How can fans participate in the process of deciding what they see on screen? LOL. “Tight ropes “.

We are living in a commercial world, damn it! Sure, but with more platforms for competitions, this question can simply be neutralized. You can challenge this opinion in the comment box.

6. So, How can music industry becomes competitive In a Nutshell?

This question sounds real gigantic or something like a heap of garbage or a golden-pit dump. No, it’s not controversial at all. The simple answer is, “competition and more competitions”. This is what it should take I supposed at the grassroots.

The Morgeez Rap Battle Royale is an example of such an initiative that is focused on scouting but also developing quality talents through a genuine competitive platform with the inclusion of both fans and the talents themselves, to determine who is more ready at the moment as an artist.

The idea of running various types of competitions within the music industry circle is to provide the much-needed opportunity for the real talents to excel and in turn, creating more quality content that fans or the public are looking for.

7. Who should be responsible for creating these talent development programs in music industry?

The answer could mean nothing depends on your perception or perspective.  Some say it’s the responsibility of the music artists themselves to be willing to participate in competitions and other activities that aim to energize competitions.  While others believe that record companies should be responsible for the state of competitiveness,  there are other schools of thought that want to put this responsibility on certain music unions. Yes, that’s right unions or even government institutions.

Others are looking towards the broadcast industry as partners of music industry that is responsible for reaching out to the masses. These broadcast institutions have been ticked to take a much larger role other than just playing the music on radio, videos on tv and stories on magazines.

It is apparent that music unions cut through the slice of the music cakes but most believe that these unions hardly give anything back to social-culturally develop their local music industries hence, the call for music unions to champion talent development initiatives.

8. Involvement of Local Authorities in Talent Development programs relative to music industry:

While looking at this point, I found out that the reason why we often see what we see on TV referring to music videos,  radio, and all major music outlets, is the level of infrastructural development required to effect proper and regular Talent development programs.

Quality talent development program will surely produce quality talent and quality talent will produce, quality music or content. This is why the attention of local authorities is required.

Christopher Odiley

Quite frankly, resources or infrastructures are missing in the industry. Among the long list of Infrastructural amenities required are:
a. Local venues dedicated to these types of competitions.  By this, I mean community venues established by local authorities specifically for these kinds of musical events where talent developers or talent scouts can have access to venues without the high cost of hiring.
b. Sounds and other equipment’s required by local Talent show organizers as sponsored by local authorities.
c. Personnel and special assistants provided by local authorities in other for local Talent show organizers have the help they needed to put their shows together.

At the end of the day, it’s all worth it for the local authorities and all interested corporate contributors,  after all, is for the common good of your locality.

9. What’s the overall benefits of a competitive music industry?

If this is a comedy piece, I would have taken a break to laugh just a little bit. LOL. Gimme a break bro! Who ask what’s the benefit of a positive program like Talent development initiatives.? The benefits are unquantifiable.  Below are few of what society and the world at large could benefit from these programs:

  • A more organized music industry where every player is more professionally focused and most of all knowledgeable. Just as they say, #knowledgeispower
  • There will be some form of level playing field whereby, real talents are given opportunities to prove themselves and eventually rewarded.
  • More quality music published and distributed and most of all, more quality music for radio and tv
  • Local fans will recognize and know their stars even before their music hits the screens and the market as they were even part of the choice-making.
  • More income for live events as local fans will surely love to attend each show their artist is performing in. His tours will be well attended as he’s already been known through the competition periods.
  • Great opportunities for local corporate and business affiliates or sponsors to create brand awareness
  • Sense of community development and mutual support for talents.

The list goes on and on. Finally, there’s no limit to what we can achieve as a collective if various Talent development projects are created and maintained in the music industry.

Thanks for reading,  please share this to create more global awareness. Remember to contact me for any music business workshops anywhere around the world. Together,  we can make a difference. Peace! 

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