Apple Music gets behind African artists

 Dr. Chaii (no. 3 from the left) and Bantu (far right)

Dr. Chaii (no. 3 from the left) and Bantu (far right)


Apple Music and Platoon invited six unsigned artists in June 2018 for the weeklong Cape Town Creative Lab (CTCL) at Mothership Studios where they took part in recording sessions, photoshoots, video shoots, interviews and media training.

The artists were Shungudzo (Zimbabwe), Bantu (Zimbabwe), Dr Chaii (Zimbabwe), Dope Saint Jude (South Africa), Kaien Cruz (South Africa) and Sipho the Gift (South Africa).

“The objective of the lab was to provide artists with an opportunity to hone their skills, taking their musical vision to the next level, while giving them access to a global audience and an insight into what the music industry entails,” a press statement said.

“Each performer recorded a new single. These songs were produced in a world class recording facility and the artists were given access to the finest creative talent including photographers, video directors and stylists to create all of the marketing assets they would need to support their release.”

The CTCL featured daily mentoring sessions with leading music professionals including producer Nile Rodgers, songwriter John Ryan, Mr Eazi, Beats 1’s Kat Wong and Ebro Darden, the head of A&R at Atlantic Records UK, Alec Boateng, Warner Music global A&R vice-president Aton Ben-Horin, and the head of publicity at Columbia Records UK, Taponeswa Mavunga, among others.

Platoon Africa CEO Denzyl Feigelson said the creative lab was intended to give artists a platform to realise themselves and to kick-start their professional careers.

“The CTCL is one in a series of labs held around the world to uncover, discover and showcase talent within a region," he said. "We started with a long list of performers and narrowed it down to six fantastic artists. We have worked hard on finding the right teams to work with each of them. The week is part of a journey, it doesn’t stop here."

USA Media Rights’ clients Bantu and Dr. Chaii were two of the six artists chosen for this opportunity, and their singles emanating from CTCL were released earlier this fall; “Bongo” by Dr. Chaii and “Remedy” by Bantu.

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