Musos' royalties bonanza

FLOOR CROSSING: Winnie Mashaba's albums have sold a collective 500000 copies. Picture: Veli Nhlapo
FLOOR CROSSING: Winnie Mashaba's albums have sold a collective 500000 copies. Picture: Veli Nhlapo

IT appears that some local artists will have a super festive season this year as millions of Needletime royalties will be finally paid out to them.

The Needletime royalties, which have been a contentious issue between artists, the South African Music Rights Organisation (Samro) and Recording Industry of South Africa, were in the process of being paid out by the South African Music Performance Rights (Sampra) and the Performers Organisation of South Africa (Posa) trust.

Sampra administers Needletime rights royalties on behalf of the recording companies while Posa administers the rights on behalf of the recording artists.

More than R180-million will be distributed but most of that money will be paid to overseas artists.

The money to be distributed was collected over five years from 2008-2012. The Needletime royalties came into effect in 2006 but documented collection started in 2008. These royalties ensure that musicians, recording artists and recording companies are paid when their music is used or performed in public.

Posa executive general manager Pfanani Lishivha said about 60% of the R180-million will go to foreign companies and performers as the majority of "South African music users [use] more of foreign tracks than local ones".

He said while it was unfortunate that the majority of the money was going offshore, more than R4-million, collected between 2009 and 2010, will be distributed before the end of the year.

Royalties for 2011 and 2012 will be distributed in late January.

Sampra chief executive David du Plessis said that they had already distributed the bulk of the money to the recording companies.

tlhoaeleb@sundayworld.co.za

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