It is no news that artistes can easily go off the scene, regardless of the years they made hit songs and organised massive concerts. It’s very easy for an artist to be forgotten, if no efforts are made to keep relevant.
Come to think of it, with new talents that come in the picture often, what would one expect? Those won’t put in work will be forgotten in a moment.
At the time when the new coronavirus outbreak has rendered most artistes idle with no shows, it has taken creativity for most of them to remain relevant during this period, doing shows online and releasing new songs but other disappeared into oblivion.
According to Pius Rukabuza, commonly known by his former stage nam DJ Pius, doing music about the Covid-19 pandemic and encouraging people to stay safe and healthy, actually helped to make some artists remain relevant. This was mainly so because such kind of message is what people need in this period.
The 1K Entertainment founder, explains that spending more time in the studio through creating new good music, and collaborations especially with talented musicians, would be a way of staying in the face of the people. “Good music creates a good mood,” he says.
“Artistes should also challenge themselves to learn new things or activities, for example, playing music instruments and venturing into other fields of education,” DJ Pius urges.
The power of online marketing and performances can’t be underestimated, that is to say, through making their music available on all digital platforms, he says, adding that keeping their profiles active on social media is another way to stay relevant.
As they say, if you are not online today, you don’t exist.
DJ Pius stresses that artistes should make sure that they have a category of fans that their music targets to entertain, otherwise, they might be lost in trying to figure out the kind of songs to do, if they don’t know their target group. Or worse, doing songs that don’t flow with the vibe of the people.
An artist should find the music style that they are good at, and give it their best, perhaps with the right management, everything is possible, he explains.
For artist up and coming singer Kevin Skaa, normally staying relevant is something that is not easy to achieve because artistes lose their originality in order to go with the trends, which they can’t fit in naturally. This is more so for new artists who are yet to fully establish themselves.
He points out that staying relevant means not to change the originality completely but to develop it by associating it to the trends, although it takes a lot of energy and research.
It is for that reason that some artists come to be referred to as ‘one hit wonders’ after they struggle to evolve with their trends or produce something similar to their breakout hit.
For singer Consolee Ruhimbaza, aka Lucky Coco staying relevant requires taking interviews more often, so that people can get updates of what an artiste is up to, and the way forward.
She notes that starting up a YouTube channel would be a big deal for musicians since it is a platform where they can post their music, and entertain fans not only with their music, but with their other talents like dancing, comedy and so forth.
“There is nothing priceless as an artiste sparing time to have a ‘question and answer’ moment with their fans, it actually creates a personal connection between a fan and an artiste, beyond just music,” she states.
Lucky Coco says that being relevant does not only mean to talk about music, but also about other matters that interest fans, for instance, an artiste opening up more about their likes, favourite dish, best and worst moment, and many more.
She has seen a big following by posting her Tiktok videos on her WhatsApp status, and Instagram, just to entertain her fans.
In music, silence isn’t golden, there must be something new cooking up. “Fans don’t want to be bored,” she says.
But the hard bit is coming back to the scene after fading off. Nonetheless, artists can still be relevant through hard work.
Jean Christian Ndikubwayo, the founder of (MNI-Muzika Nyarwanda Ipande Ltd), a platform that was created to enhance the local music and help artistes to earn from it, says that musicians should adapt themselves to the changes brought about by the pandemic and consider how they can continue to promote their work and brand.
He also suggests that artists must look at the opportunities that can earn them revenue, including, online distribution platforms and online concerts or use local platforms which work fully online.
To remain relevant, you have to evolve with times or risk disappearing off the scene, Ndikubwayo observes.Follow mbabazijoan11