“IN THE MUSIC”: SPOTLIGHT ON BEST MUSIC INC
Hello People..New Year, New Feature..”In the Music” will spotlight people in Camer entertainment.Artists, Record Labels, Producers, Video Directors and will also feature guest bloggers analysing our up and coming music industry.
Post #1 goes to Best Music Inc. Best Music Inc Boss gives us the 411 on the label and some of insights about the music industry..
Who is Ebot Blaise? A brief bio?
My names are Ebot Blaise a.k.a @didiblaise, I am bayangi from Ossing. Am a graphic designer and web developer, worked with AfroVisioN Group, a co-founder of njorku.com. Founder and CEO of Best Music Inc (www.bestmusicinc.com), Kwata TV ( www.kwata.tv) and KamerBorn Awards (www.kamerbornawards.com). I write, produce and direct entertainment content particularly movie, music videos, Tv shows and concerts. I am based in Buea.
The Best Music Journey…How did it all start?
I love music and I have a deep passion for it. My friends, Shady V (Wan Man) and Nami Nami Cyrus and I use to rap in secondary school and we were good. We separated after high school because we had different study programs to follow. In 2011, I called Nami Nami Cyrus from Yaounde talk to him about doing something serious with music, he did not hesitate. He came to Buea and we met with Young Bird who was ready for business. We called SLIMBEATZ who was in Douala at that time, he came over, and that’s how we started putting things together came up with a group called L.O.L, with a single called “Tonado” which is a club banger, whose video I directed. And that’s how how Best Music Inc started creating its space in the music industry.
What does and what do you want Best Music Inc to represent?
Apart from being a record label and a family, I want Best Music Inc to represent a source of good music that people can rely on. Best Music Inc works hard to produce unique entertainment.
What does an A&R do and why is this role so important in a record label and the music business as a whole?
An A&R is the “eye” of the label. This role is very important because he/she must be able to see and recognize a talent or brand in an individual. This is where the money comes from, you can see a talent without a brand or brand without a talent, but how you manage either or both of them to bring in money it what matters and trust me it’s not an easy task. An A&R must be able to see money in an individual before signing he/she under the label.
What are the criteria and the process for signing artist to your label?
To be a best music artist you have to possess the following.
The process of signing can take a while, we have to spend some time with the artist in question, in the studio, social gatherings, shows etc. From there we shall see if you have the qualities above.
Tell us about the artists & and other key people in the label
I will start with the first lady of Best Music Inc, Ewube. She is the youngest of all the artist and her genre is afro dancehall, afro pop, hip hop and soul. She is very ambitious and hardworking.Her single “Party All Nyte” has been making waves in clubs and other platforms. She has been performed in various shows including some MTN Cameroon events. The video of “Party All Nyte” will be released soon so watch out for it!
Nami Nami Cyrus who is also a co-founder of the label. Cyrus is one of the ‘realest’ MC’s you can find in this industry.He is an artist who is able to switch roles from a singer to a perfect entertainer. Hip hop, and afro dancehall is his genre, the label released his first official single “Ewakajo” last December.
Then there is Mic Monsta. Mic is one of those afro hip hop lyricists who make you listen to a song over and over just to feel good about what he is saying in the song. He is one of the last artists to be signed by Best Music but his video #Nword which is a cover from Ice Prince’s #Word made waves all over and landed him a spot on Jovi’s “Et p8 koi” remix. Mic Monsta’s official single will drop some time this February.
Another artist signed to Best Music is SLIMBEATZ who is also a co-founder and the brain behind all Best Music Inc productions. Slim as I call him is the coolest guy to work with. He is so dedicated to his job sometimes I feel like am lazy when am next to him. If you need a hit song he is the person to call. So far he is responsible for many Camer afro music in the market. Slim is also a hip hop, afro dancehall artist and a composer. He has produced instrumentals for Krotal, Steveslil, Museba and many more. Young Flo in the USA is another person SlimBeatz has been producing for and he is currently working on a collabo with rap icon Obi Trice produced by SlimBeatz.
Vumomse ( Charlo Magic ) is a gospel artists affiliated to Best Music Inc. He is based in the USA and his album “Rakata” is a Best Music Inc production. He is an electrifying gospel artist with a little Makossa and Coupe Decale flair to his style.
Other artists Signed to the label include Young Bird and Leslo!
Jaff Berinyuy Shafe Leslie is co-founder of Best Music. He has a degree holder in Economics
from the university of Buea. He is a music lover and also serves as A&R
There are some artists who are affiliated to the label such as Steveslil of SJ Havens, TZY Panchak, Boy Cheez and WanMan. So you can see its one big family we got here.
OK wow…That is a big crew right there..
What are some of the challenges as a label in today’s music industry?
Wow! This should be a long list, but I will try to narrow it down.
Finance is one of the major issue labels face in this industry. Financial issues bring tension among members/shareholders/artists within a label.
Another thing is humility between artists and other players in the industry. There are a lot of channels an artist or song has to go through before it can become a hit song and most artists don’t have that patience to wait for their time. Everybody wants his/her success now which is not how it works.
Air play is another major barrier.We have a serious problem with the media playing our songs. Now it’s not that we don’t have money to pay the sound engineer but the sound engineer prefers foreign music.We have very rich urban music content in Cameroon. A sound engineer in a radio station or MCs at snack bars or clubs play foreign music from out neighboring countries for free and ask us to pay before our songs can be played. How does our music get to the people? How do our artists become celebrities when we choose not to promote what is ours? Even if you pay a DJ some money, that money expires that same week.. He may play the song when he/she sees you in the club. The same goes for TV stations. The promotion packages of some TV stations are expensive.
Your recommendations on how to handle some of these challenges?
We should practice humility especially among artists. Our rich brothers, father, sisters, businessmen etc please invest in this business. This does not only keep money in their pockets in keeps some away from the streets and something to live for. Imagine how many people this industry can employ, light engineers, cameramen, directors, editors, costume designers, make-up artists you name the rest? We don’t have schools for train people in these skills in Cameroon yet we have very talented people in those domains who are producing rich urban music content.
The government also has a role a play. The government has the power to reduce play time for foreign music, encourage direct investment to the music industry, encourage education intiatives and facilities e.g.schools or workshops. An increase in Corporate sponsorship of entertainment will boost the industry since it serves as part of their social corporate responsibilities
A little birdie tells me that you there is something big in the works…Pray tell??
Well I think big and I work hard, I have one of the best team. We bring out the best in each other. We put our heads together and release our products with one voice #BestMusic. So little birdie, if you see me that way, know my team got my back and I have theirs too.
A few words for up and coming artists and your peers in the Cameroon Urban Music Industry?
First I will always strike on the point of patience and humility, those are the intangible strengths of success. Secondly work hard and be spiritually strong, don’t do juju because I said spiritually strong, use your Bible. The most important is Unity. We have to stick together to make it work. We can’t ask help and investment from our community, government, companies, businessmen etc when we are busy hating on ourselves. Push the work of your brother as if it were yours and see how someone you don’t know will push yours.
Wow..Thanks You Ebot Blaise for this interview!!!!
Na wah oh..E no easy for get record label for Camer. I cut you and ya crew cafe!!
Thumbs up to the Best Music crew. I wish least 1 or 2 of artists make its big this year ’cause they are a talented crew…It will help everyone else!!
What are some of the features you want to see on “In the Music”? Who should be next? Stay Tuned.
It’s Friday. Have a nice weekend!