The beef between Kenyan artistes and the Music Copyright Society of Kenya (MCSK) has been renewed following the latest payment of their royalties. This comes after artistes registered under the body received an M-Pesa text of Kshs 2,530 (na ya kutoa!).
Artistes quickly took to social media with the screenshots to protest about the small amount they had received. They were very disappointed that all the hard work they put in to make music seemed to be unappreciated by the body and they felt that they deserved more royalties.
Khaligraph Jones, the self proclaimed OG, asked the MCSK to keep their peanuts and to no longer collect royalties on his behalf. He also gave authorization for his music to be pirated and he forbid the organisation from arresting anyone who played his music in public without a license.
Rapper King Kaka was also not amused by the amount sent to him, questioning how the money was distributed to members and if it was all that was collected.
So MCSK sends everyone Kshs 2500 * 15k members that’s 37M are you sure that’s all you collected. Kukula jasho ya Mtu ni laana na naskia kama hauna license wanakushika right there and then, Wacheni ufala. pic.twitter.com/NyqHJl9yUC
— KING KAKA (@RabbitTheKing) August 13, 2019
Celebrated singer Suzanna Owiyo lamented the fact that such low payments of royalties was one of the ways that artistes were unsupported leading to lack of growth in the music industry.
We hve grown ass men/women who sit at the MCSK office denying the artistes their rightful pays.I received this text & didn't pay much attention to it.MCSK are jokers who’r slowly killing the industry. Zero interest in supporting the artistes.Selling nunu wld gve better pay check. pic.twitter.com/yGEyd7oTrd
— Suzanna OWIYO – OGW (@SuzannaOwiyo) August 14, 2019
Kenyans on Twitter were also quick to poke fun at the meager royalties earned by musicians whose songs have been ruling the airwaves for a while. They also called for better pay for artistes as well as a closer look at the MCSK management and how they collected those royalties.
Khaligraph Jones: “I’m the king, getting paid in meters like Khalifa!”
— Kenipedia (@K_Antikaryote) August 14, 2019
Find 2019 MCSK payment scheme.
at the top is Khaligraph – Willy Paul – Stivo Simple Boy😅😅😅👇 pic.twitter.com/zYGP3sWOyB
— Mason OVO (@masonOVO1) August 14, 2019
Naiboi: “After all these years of working hard…you do an audio and a video…DJs are being harassed and clubs are being closed for playing your music. Then all a musician gets is Ksh.2,500…na 30 bob ya kutoa. MCSK must pay us our money!” pic.twitter.com/FELcZOhlTF
— eDaily Kenya (@edailykenya) August 14, 2019
Tunapiga kelele uku vile musicians wamelipwa peanuts na MCSK and forget that board members are their fellow musicians not outsiders.
— Mjengo Specialist 🔨 (@JoeKenya_) August 14, 2019
MCSK was quick to release an official statement saying that the Kshs 2,530 paid as royalties to artistes was evenly distributed from music performance in public places. This amount was collected over 2 months and did not include fees from broadcasters, which would have made the royalties amount higher.
Official Press Statement on General distribution of Performance in Public Places (PPP) royalties. pic.twitter.com/OOvFsjsS0x
— MCSK (@TheMCSK) August 14, 2019
This is not the first time that MCSK has been in a row with artistes. In 2016, music group Elani questioned why their royalties amounted to only Kshs 31,000 despite their songs been on heavy rotation everywhere. After a lot of noise, they were finally ‘compensated’ with Kshs 300,000 by MCSK.
Featured Image Courtesy: Classic 105