News Brief

The ANC Reportedly Couldn’t Afford to Pay Artists to Perform at The Launch of the Party’s Manifesto

Artists billed to perform at the ANC's manifesto launch didn't show up.

South Africa's ruling party, the African National Congress (ANC) launched its manifesto last week Saturday in Durban ahead of the national elections taking place later this year. Artists who were supposed to perform during the event, however, didn't show up.


According to City Press, the reason artists such as Master KG and Kwesta ended up not performing was because the party couldn't afford to pay them because its budget was "tight."

An undisclosed source told the paper:

"This is strange because some of the artists were given the program in advance. It is unprofessional and unacceptable. Some of the artists didn't accept gigs elsewhere because they were booked for the ANC manifesto. What is sad is that they were only offering to pay artists from R10 000 to R35 000 and not more than that. So it was take it or leave it."

Kwesta's message reportedly confirmed the hip-hop star couldn't be available because he wasn't happy with the party's offer.

Interview

A Candid Conversation With Olamide & Fireboy DML

We talk to the Nigerian stars about the hardest lessons they've learned, best advice they've ever been given and what Nigeria means to them.

Olamide and Fireboy DML have been working together for three years, but the first time they sit down to do an interview together is hours after they arrive in New York City on a promo tour.

It's Fireboy's first time in the Big Apple — and in the US — and the rain that's pouring outside his hotel doesn't hinder his gratitude. "It's such a relief to be here, it's long overdue," he tells OkayAfrica. "I was supposed to be here last year, but Covid stopped that. This is a time to reflect and refresh. It's a reset button for me."

Olamide looks on, smiling assuredly. Since signing Fireboy to his YBNL Nation label in 2018, he's watched the soulful young singer rise to become one of Nigeria's most talked-about artists — from his breakout single, "Jealous," to his debut album Laughter, Tears & Goosebumps, hit collabs with D.Smoke and Cuppy, and his sophomore release, Apollo, last year.

Even while he shares his own latest record, UY Scuti, with the world, Olamide nurtures Fireboy's career with as much care and attention as he does his own, oscillating between his two roles of artist and label exec seamlessly. His 2020 album Carpe Diem is the most streamed album ever by an African rap artist, according to Audiomack, hitting over 140 million streams. When Olamide signed a joint venture with US-based record label and distribution company, Empire, in February last year he did so through his label, bringing Fireboy and any other artist he decides to sign along for the ride, and establishing one of the most noteworthy deals on the continent.

Below, Olamide & Fireboy DML speak to OkayAfrica about their mutual admiration for each other, what makes them get up in the morning and how they switch off.

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