Stonebwoy, other African acts’ music restored after TikTok, Universal Music resolve dispute

Fans of numerous African artists signed to Universal Music Group or its subsidiaries will finally have their music back on TikTok after the two companies settled a dispute over royalties.

TikTok pulled down all music licensed to Universal Music Group on February 1 after failing to reach an agreement with the record label.

Universal Music accused TikTok of unfair royalties and criticized the platform for allowing AI-generated recordings and promoting AI music creation tools.

However, the two companies announced an end to the rift, with Universal revealing that TikTok has agreed to key changes, including improved remuneration for artists starting in May.

Sir Lucian Grainge, Universal’s boss, stated in an email to staff, “Under the new agreement, artist and songwriter compensation will be greater than under our prior TikTok deal.”

The firms said they were “working expeditiously” to return Universal’s music to TikTok, BBC reported.

But, the process of restoring the music to TikTok, which includes restoring the audio to videos which were previously muted, will take about two weeks.

Universal Music with its subsidiaries is one of the biggest music labels in the world, owning some of the biggest catalogues in the music industry.

With very little investment in the African music industry especially in Ghana, the signing of artists like Stonebwoy is seen as a significant move to bring attention to the West African country and Africa’s music industry as a whole.

Thus, their music ban raised fears with many wondering how far the damage could go if the dispute was not resolved.

Although other versions of these artistes music were on the the social media platform, artistes could not promote their music on TikTok.

The resolution of this dispute means the return of African artists like Stonebwoy, Yemi Alade, Mr Eazi, Sauti Sol, Techno, Nasty C, Vanessa Mdee, Youssou N’Dour, and many others to TikTok once their music is restored.

This includes the return of African music affected by the ban, such as the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) official song ‘Akwaba.’

The track, composed by Magic System featuring Yemi Alade and Mohammed Ramadan and released under Universal Music Group, suffered from reduced exposure due to the ban on TikTok.

Source: Myjoyonline.com

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