A DECADE ago, the requirement to become a successful musician was signing with a record label and then your fans would go and purchase the music from record bars or shops.
Report by Cecilia Kamuputa
Today, CD sales have dropped and fans have turned to downloading music, either legally or illegally.
Speaking to NewsDay following the release of his album, local producer, emcee and singer Simbarashe Tagwireyi aka Simba Tagz said it was imperative for artistes to have some sort of online presence to reach out to those who might not be able to hear about them from local radio stations or newspapers.
“With the lack of proper infrastructure and what our economy has gone through, you would not expect a lot of people to be buying our music,” said Tagz.
Taking this phenomenon into consideration, artistes have been called on to create a digital footprint in order to reach wider audiences, build strong brands and then sell their works of art.
“We now rely on building strong names using social media and getting our music known out there through online sharing. Once you get known enough, you have a lot of opportunities to be called and perform in live shows.”
Besides Twitter, Facebook and SoundCloud accounts, Tagz has also come up with a website www.simbatagz.com where he would continue to share his audio and video clips.
The site would also be used to sell promotional T-shirts and CDs which would then be sold from shops once the concept gets popular.
The album, simply titled Black, was released on Tuesday May 14, 2013 and twitter and Facebook were used as the main vehicles to share the music.
“The initial songs on my album sounded so dark, the Kanye West-Power type of dark. There was a lot of anger in my music, hence the name Black. When my computer crashed, I lost my work and had to start again to come up with this album.”
Black carries 12 songs including Hapana, KaLife, Don’t Leave and more and features artistes like Tendai Nguni aka Tehn Diamond, James Mpakula aka Junior Brown, Courtney Rusike, Juan Take and more.
About five commercial videos will be made for Black, while the rest will be videos, shared via the Internet.
Despite hampering the sales for established musicians and other artistes, the Internet has created a platform for up-and-coming musicians to gain exposure.