Independent labels – often owned by artists – have become an important part of Africa’s emerging music industries. That’s why the global majors are so keen to strike deals with them, offering a path to global audiences as well as support within their domestic markets. The latest example is a partnership between Warner Music Group and Tanzanian artist Diamond Platnumz, which includes his label WCB-Wasafi.
WMG is describing it as a “360 partnership” that will see the label become part of Warner Music South Africa and Ziiki Media, with the promise of working together on “new releases, catalogue, brand partnerships, live and sync deals”. The deal will also see WMG pushing Diamond Platnumz himself and artists signed to WCB-Wasafi elsewhere in the world, where demand from audiences and digital music services alike for African music in its various genres continues to grow.
“Not only is Diamond one of the premier artists on the continent, but he is undoubtedly lynchpin of the Bongo Flava scene in Tanzania,” said Temi Adeniji, MD of Warner Music South Africa and SVP, strategy, Sub-Saharan Africa.