With the local music industry seemingly in the doldrums, rapper Futuristic, real name Sekese Rasephei, recently penned an article in which he outlines the reasons for its demise.
While the article is a commentary on the music industry in general, it gives particular attention to the Hip Hop genre.
“This is my earnest attempt at giving Lesotho Hip Hop some form of back-story from a neutral non-affiliated point of view, with hopes of getting some form of traction in diagnosing why Lesotho Hip Hop is what it is and/or where it is,” wrote Futuristic.
“I love Lesotho Hip Hop but, unfortunately it is the most motionless Hip Hop scene I have ever come to know. There are so many things wrong with it than there are right.
“The saddest thing is that we’re contributing immensely to its immobility.
“With the odds already stacked against us in that there isn’t a proper music industry in Lesotho to begin with, one would think we’d be keen to craft an industry conducive to our art, considering that we have raw talent in immeasurable amounts.
He lays into artistes who claim to have made it in the industry, yet the situation on the ground proves otherwise. This sense of denial, Futuristic argues, hinders the development of the industry.
“An industry needs serious radio jockeys, promoters, record executives, video directors, photographers,” he opnes.
According to Futuristic, in some cases only one person can be the producer, video director, album sleeve designer, promoter and artist manager among other roles.
“The problem with this sort of set up is that people don’t fulfill their roles effectively because there’s always a conflict of interest as a result of being committed to too many tasks.”
Futuristic calls for the establishment of bodies to lobby for artistes’ interests, such as ensuring royalties are paid and music is duly registered.
He concludes by saying: “This is not an unfounded or pessimistic view of Lesotho Hip Hop but a realistic one. I have been in the game long enough.”
“I use the word ‘industry’ in this entire piece very loosely because the industry is non-existent!”