"Welcome to the future of the Nigerian Music Industry"
Mr. Adeola Lawal
Second Vice President
He also sits on the planning committee and is the Talent Manager for Nigeria’s annual music and arts festival Gidi Fest.
Previously he was the founder and CEO of Strictly Entertainment Music (now Strictly Digital Music), a music Distribution, Booking Agency and Management company representing African artist.
iKEChukwu also worked with the Reggae Philharmonic Orchestra as their Agent as well as the Urban Soul Orchestra both in the UK as their Business Manager. Additionally, he lectured in music business at Westminster and City Universities in London respectively.
In 2012 he orchestrated the Territory Focus “Region Down In Africa” report published by the UK weekly music business magazine, Music Week 09.11.12, along with “Afro-Beats, The Next Big Thing?” published on 16.11.12 by the British Phonographic Industries (BPI), who also organise the annual Brit Awards, administer the official charts 100 as well as are partners to the Retailers Association of Great Britain.
That same year iKEChukwu co-founded and launch The Afro-Beats Educational Roadshow (TAER) as forum for bringing together African and mainstream music professionals under one roof to discuss issues surrounding the progress of the genre.
To date they have organised 8 series in association with Westminster University – Commercial Music department, The Africa Centre London, Ravensbourne University, UK Trade & Investment, SXSW 2016 and the British Phonographic Industries (BPI).
Mr. Toscar Roberts
Princess (Mrs.) Obanla Elizabeth Adeola
Lagos State Chapter Chairman
Ap. Dr. Emeka George
A decision to form AMAN came up sometime around the end of 1991 after the constitutional dissolution of Association of Artiste Managers and Music Promoters (AMMP). At the time, AMMP was enjoying a very healthy working relationship with the Performing Musicians Employers Association in Nigeria (PMAN). There was friendly mutual relationship between both Associations in that period which probably will go down as the golden era of the Nigerian Entertainment industry. PMAN under its leadership at the time played key roles in providing support for mutual cooperation between both Associations and included members of AMMP as resource persons to provide intermediary services for PMAN events such as participating in the organizing committee for their most successfully organized Nigerian Music Awards of 1991. However, cracks started to appear on the wall and the unity between members became fragile following disagreements between PMAN and Ideas Communications Ltd, the company that marketed the Nigerian Music Awards ’91. The matter went to court with the outcome not satisfactory to Ideas Communications Ltd who then decided to float another company named Platinum Promotions Ltd with the aim of subsequently organizing show business events in Nigeria including music awards ceremonies fashioned after the template of the Nigerian Music Awards which they had marketed for PMAN before they disagreed.
At the launch of Platinum Promotions Ltd in Sheraton Hotel Lagos, it became clear to all entertainment industry watchers that things were no longer as it had been with members of key entertainment industry associations having their sympathy for different sides of the divide of the post Nigerian Music Awards ’91 squabbles. Some of the stakeholders pitched their loyalty with the promoters and others stood by artistes and their managers. It was not a healthy climate to do business with the industry polarized that way. People suspected that fairness would be compromised with some people being denied the appreciation of their efforts or needed access to more visibility in an industry that thrives on show and hype depending on which side of the divide you belong. In his speech, as one of the esteemed guests during the launch party of Platinum Promotions Ltd, Music Producer Laolu Akins, suggested to all industry stakeholders present in the event that in his opinion, there was need for Artiste Managers to have their own association while music promoters should also have their own association so as to address the seemingly endless bickering and squabbles between Artiste Managers and Music promoters who were their counterparts in AMMP. To the anger of Artiste Managers, there was an impression created by the music promoters that they were the ‘Big Boys’ with assumed large pockets and should be calling the shots in the entertainment industry in Nigeria. This was seen as a flawed arrangement and was depriving the Artiste Managers the right to appropriate prizing for their services and worth of their artistes, if they were all operating under the same association with same constitution. This was coming at the heels of Late Mr. Kim Lawani, general secretary of AMMP being appointed as general manager of Platinum Promotions Ltd, an appointment that was considered to provoke conflict of interest. Following this development, an extra ordinary meeting of AMMP delegates was held in PMAN Headquarters, at Number 1 Oremeji Street, Ikeja Lagos with the press in attendance. It was decided that there will be a professional disengagement between Artiste Managers and Promoters in AMMP to pave way for the formation of two separate associations which could be relating at professional levels and on equal mutual terms and not bound by the same constitution as was the case in AMMP. By that decision in PMAN Headquarters, the stage was set for the dissolution of AMMP which was then finalized in a general meeting held on the 25th of April 1992 in Combo Hotels Ltd, Olodi Apapa Lagos, presided over by Late Chief Gilbert Oboh who was then the Vice President of AMMP and was acting in place of Mr. Pedro Okojie who was AMMP President but had just suddenly thrown in his resignation letter due to what he described as personal reasons.
The AMMP referendum general meeting ended with members of the Association voting overwhelmingly in favor of forming a new Association to be known as ‘Artiste Managers Association in Nigeria’ (AMAN). Promoters in the former Association AMMP by this resolution were encouraged to form their own separate association if they so wished. The meeting which was witnessed by the Press and PMAN representatives ended with mutual handshake and Artiste Managers and Promoters went their separate professional ways but still remain friends in the larger Nigerian Entertainment Industry. That meeting dubbed in the industry circles as ‘The Apapa Declaration’ marked the day that AMAN members started to come together to identify themselves as Artiste Managers in Nigeria until the Association was officially granted a certificate of registration by the corporate affairs commission (CAC) in Abuja on the 28th of March 1995 during the regime of General Sani Abacha.
At registration, the pioneer Trustees of the Association are Chief Gilbert Oboh (First and founding President of AMAN) Mr. Collins Ifeanyi Onwuneme Ajereh Enebeli – A.K.A. Mavin Grandpa (First Vice President of AMAN) Chief Osita Okukogwu (Second Vice President of AMAN) Mr. Tunji Olalere (Pioneer Secretary of AMAN). There were many other individuals who played active pioneering roles during the formative period of AMAN and the struggles to get it started who cannot be forgotten in a hurry. Names that resonate are that of people such as Eddie Jay Omodiaogbe, Sonny Onwuneme, Daddy Hyde Ehiguese, Emeka George, Gideon Nwaomu, Dayo Olomu, Martin Osuya, Paulyn Jaire, Terry More, Macauley Okologbo etc. to mention but a few. Without these people and the passion with which every one of them contributed to get AMAN off the ground, perhaps there may never be what we have today. Welcome to AMAN.
Article written by Mavin Grandpa, Date: 20/12/2017.
Pictures by: Mavin Grandpa. (Copyright reserved)