We are so used to receiving the beneficial end products of something that took a strategic mind to produce, whether it be an upcoming artist’s sudden rise to fame after years of struggles, or the joys of a “turnt up” event after months of planning, that we lose our recognition radars to those behind the artists, events, gatherings or publicities. This time HYPE had a sit down with Bombshelter Entertainment (South Africa) PRP & image manager, as well as event strategist Mr. Cashintransit to discuss the challenges of creating successful events, remedies for bad publicity, Cap City’s hip hop growth & the ingredients to his formula of success for upcoming MCs. Lets break it down…
To most event promoters are seen as people who just get other people excited about events. You have quite a history in being involved in all aspects of event construction. Take us through what it takes to be in the field you in…
What it takes to be in my field and remain in it is the know-how in terms of what can be put together to make a “particular event”, a strategic venue and how to sell it to the public to make them attend. To put up events, one needs to know what works and what doesn’t, what will sell and what won’t. It’s not all about spending so much money on big artists and DJs.
You’ve helped develop upcoming artists as a talent manager. Now taking everything into consideration, what are the challenges that face upcoming artists in the music industry? Is there a certain formula to success?
Let me start from the latter, I will say there’s a certain formula to success which I’ve put together through my research as a publicist. But I don’t refer to it as a formula, I call it a model; A path to success for upcoming artists to follow. But I will tell you that upcoming artists are plagued by challenges of sponsorship. Lots of talents and voices are underground, waiting and looking for the opportunity to be heard. If only they could get funds to promote themselves.
Image has always played a major role in an artist’s career and we’ve seen a couple of PR disasters with our own local artists, on social networks and other platforms. As a PR Practitioner for Bombshelter Entertainment, how do you handle bad publicity? If there even is such a thing…
For Bombshelter Entertainment, there has never been bad publicity, but looking at itfrom the angle of a PR Practitioner that I am, the best way to handle it is telling the truth; painting the picture the right way. The public’s perception of the organisation or individual that I represent is what matters. Not telling the truth can do more harm to the image you have built over the years. This is where ethics & PR comes together. There’s a code of professional standards for the practice of PR as laid out by Public Relations Institute of Southern Africa (PRISA) and one has to uphold it.
Tell us more about #turnUPthursdays & the upcoming Industry Night…
#turnUPthursdays is focused around upcoming artists. Though some might see it as an event where they can chill, listen to good music and have fun on a typical Thursday, the scope is beyond that. #turnUPthursdays is a networking event created to give upcoming artists a platform to showcase themselves; A place where they get to interact with new listeners who are not from the same hood. Artists are given the chance to be heard, and if they have new songs we get to play it first. CD Submissions are done, our DJ listens to them and the good ones are played. Those that have promo CDs to share also give them out this event.
You were the PR for the annual Pretoria Music Awards in 2013. How has Cap City’s hip hop developed over the years? Is credit given where it’s due?
Hip Hop is developing at a fast pace, considering the kind of rappers we have here now. Using this opportunity to give a shoutout to rappers from Mamleodi. That’s not where I’m from, but I have so much respect for rappers in that area. They do hip hop because of the passion. With what we have now, Cap city hip hop has developed a great deal, rappers here are trendy.
Tell us more about your blog “ChitChat Mzansi”.
“ChitChat Mzansi” aims to serve as an interactive medium that the community of Pretoria can use to obtain and disseminate entertainment information and upcoming events. While there are already a number of blogs that do this, we aim to bring new and innovative ways to bring the Pretoria community to the fore, over and above the ‘traditional’ ways of weblog interaction.
Do you think there are enough media platforms that really expose & exploit the musical talents that our country has to offer? Or even Africa has as a whole?
[Hesitates] I will say no, but we are getting there really fast. The entertainment media needs more healthy competition considering the pace at which the Mass Media, Print Media and blogs are sprouting. In the whole of Africa, as of now, the three most recognised music channels are MTV Base, Trace TV and Channel O. It needs to get really competitive so artists can have choices. These stations are not enough to showcase or exploit what Africa at large has to offer.
Your top 5 favourite local artists?
Majorly, they are underground, namely Mapakshop Crew (Mamelodi), 012South, Sean Digga (Sunnyside), Rhyzo Records crew (Mamelodi), Quick Cash Intruder Crew (Hamanskraal). Got lots of love for them…
Any advice you could dish for upcoming artists?
Keep doing what you believe in and know how to do best. The likes of 2Face, AKA, Wizkid, D’Banj & HHP made it to the top because they never relent during their trying times. They forged ahead even when they failed. You really don’t want to know what most of them have been through before they became who they are today. Davido was faced with so much criticism at the inception of his career, the reaction he got from Nigerian fans wasn’t what he expected, but he didn’t get dissuaded by that. Everyone has a story to tell. Be creative, keep believing in yourself and keep working hard.