Why is Kenya not attracting prime music artists?
Posted by Administrator on April 1, 2012
By 2pm on Friday, I had received tens of calls and SMSs from friends both close and those not so close asking for one small favour: There was the Joe Thomas concert in town, and they wanted to know if I could get them tickets – complimentary, of course.
Welcome to Kenya’s socialite; we like getting into events free and then go ahead to spend thousands, sometimes tens of thousands, on booze. For those who have ever been in event organisation will tell you for free that this kind of person is an event organiser’s worst nightmare. How is one to recoup their costs, if all of you want a freebie ticket?
No wonder that Kenya continues to struggle to attract top-drawer performers compared to our neighbours Tanzania and Uganda. There the corporates don’t mind splashing the dollars because they know they will get the cash back from ticket sales as well as sales for beverages in case its a beverage company.
Joe Thomas is a respected artiste who has wowed many for two decades. But also it is true that he is not at his prime right now. The same can be said be of Donnel Jones who visited Kenya the other day. In Tanzania, the list reads with names like Jay-Z and when Rick Ross bypasses Kenya to visit a country like Gabon, which has the population of about 1.5m people – or a third, the size of Nairobians!
Mind you, those two artistes I have mentioned above were sponsored during their visits by a corporate but it is also fair to imagine that they are comparatively affordable. Another thing, their target market is slightly mature and predisposed to paying up two or three thousand shillings for a concert. Until the day we all agree to save up or invest in having a good time, instead of hoping for complimentary tickets, Kenya will always be treated as an afterthought by artistes; something you do later in the day during your career.
Ship sails into showbiz history
Some 100 years ago, what was the most advanced passenger liner ever assembled set out for its maiden voyage.
She had been declared virtually unsinkable, with a popular myth holding that one of the crewmembers had commented on her infallibility saying that even God himself cannot sink the Titanic.
She sank on her maiden voyage on April 15, 1912, killing almost 1,500 passengers.
Invincibility turned into frenzy, triumph into tragedy and pride into outrage as the then known world came into terms with just how small they were still in the grand scheme; Titanic sank after hitting an iceberg that the captain had been warned about, the ship continued to steam at full speed, because it was generally believed that ice posed little danger to large vessels and Captain Smith himself had declared that he could not imagine any condition which would cause a ship to founder adding that “Modern shipbuilding has gone beyond that.”
The tragedy became subject to myths, like the one about the ship’s band that reportedly continued singing even as the ship sank or the captain who went down with his ship. Phrases like ‘down like the Titanic’ became common literature.
Hollywood, of course could not be left behind. Aside from the Hollywood classic A Night to Remember, the 1997 movie Titanic is the second highest grossing movie of all time and was for long in the number one slot. It won 11 Oscars.
This coming week sees a re-release also known as Titanic in 3D which was created by re-mastering the original 1997 movie as and post-converting to 3D (3-dimensional) stereoscopic format.
The Titanic 3D version took 60 weeks and a reported cost of $18 million to produce.
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