Save the Live Event!

Rosie Katz has a history in music industry development that makes me shudder! She has influenced many aspiring musicians in their quest for music stardom. She is passionate about musicians earning a livelihood through live events and not depending on the recording industry. She has a genuine passion for instilling sound business principles amongst musicians and in creating opportunities for those grappling with industry barriers.

Here’s an extract from an interview I had with her in 2005.

The record contract clause, I think there is a timing restraint. There is a possibility of that happening, where a record company signs an artist up and then something better comes along so they put that one on hold.

This echoes Malcolm Nhleko’s comments in the article ‘Dissing the music industry.’

Everyone talks about artists having to make a living from the industry and they do, and I am passionate about this – they can only do it through live music. But everyone in the industry has to make

a living from the music.

Live events is the solution for unemployed musicians

It’s not about protecting them ‘against’; it’s about preparing them ‘for’. Preparing them to be able to enter into an industry.

Funding for development is a major issue. It’s lip service, know what I mean? I don’t understand how the music industry can grow until there’s a firm commitment from government.

Where are the grass root things. Where’s the money? How do you develop and train or create opportunities without funding? Because you see, you know what the interesting thing is? Everybody talks about development but when it comes to doing it..!

I don’t have the answers.

Live music is a serious issue that we should address in our industry and if 90% or even 60% of our musicians can only earn a living from live music, and there isn’t live music then what? The issue of the labor relations of musicians is that musicians want to be classified as workers. But the problem is that not enough of them are working!

Music Week was one of Rosie's many projects

Let me tell you how I feel, I feel despondent. But as despondent as I feel I’m not fucking giving up. Because it will pass. As soon as there’s money in the bank!!!!  What can I say! It’s the truth!The reason why there are so many issues in the music industry is because musicians don’t earn a living. So when musicians die poor, people forget their lifestyles.

I promise you, you give a musician R50 000 today – in a month’s time they will have no idea what happened to that money! A lot of musicians! The reality is outside of those musicians dying like paupers – there are many of them living like paupers! And no one is worrying about that!

Only live music can solve it  – or the dole! But we don’t have the dole here!

When it comes to training, the problem is that the industry isn’t recognizing the training and no jobs are being created. So the only solution for a lot of the youth is to create their own jobs. That’s a problem.

Politics! How can you grow…not what should we do to make it grow? How can it grow? Stop fucking ‘engaging’ the people and start funding them, supporting them. It’s not about handouts!


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