Singer Otile Brown has asked Kenyans to go easy on local artists as they build their brands.
The singer, who had a phenomenal year in 2020 and fell victim to comparison with other Bongo artists, has urged fans to be patient with artists coz the music business in Kenya is tough and still in its early stages.
“Before y ‘all speak, always know that we’re doing it by ourselves and those, who you think are better than us ‘wamebebwa,'” said Brown in a long Instagram post.
For a long time now Kenyan artists have been under a microscope. Fans have been comparing them to neighboring and even international artists insisting that our entertainers are still lagging behind.
Otile believes it’s harder for Kenyans because they are doing it on their own with little or no support unlike in other countries.
“I think Kenyan artists should be respected 100%,” said the singer.
“All of those ‘big artist’ y ‘all compare us with, they had/ have Godfathers who hold them down and even now that they’ve made it, their godfathers are still putting money on their projects. Our growth has to be slow and gradual coz we are always doing it all by ourselves, no label no investors and remember we ain’t from rich families.”
Besides lacking investors, Kenyan artists also face a myriad of challenges starting from a government that doesn’t care about the industry to a conglomerate of vultures who are eager to bank millions from their hustle.
“We have to balance the little that we get to pay bills, take care of our families and invest it back in the business,” Otile went on.
“We’ve been failed by our government, media and even some of the selfish stakeholders in the business eg music distributors who take advantage of artists.
“Tell me why a corporate brand would take about 70% of all the revenues collected from platforms such as ring-back tones and other platforms, they’ve sucked us dry. I also see young ballas but all they want is to call you for a hang out on alcohol and women just to make them look cool. That’s why y ‘all will never see me around them.”