The launch of Sulumani Chimbetu’s album at Jazz 105 on Thursday night was an exciting event in many ways.
Report by Godwin Muzari
Artists and event organisers should draw a few lessons from the way the whole affair was put up.
Sulu has done similar events before, but the launch of Syllabus was outstanding.
The event should have taught many about the need to invest adequately for such programmes.
Although the organisers are not willing to disclose figures yet, it is obvious that the programme gobbled a substantial amount.
Organisers made sure that the launch was preceded by a roadshow to announce the event and market the new album.
A convoy of branded posh cars brought business to a halt in the city centre and other parts of the capital as drivers hooted all the way in celebration.
We are only used to such scenarios when renowned international stars arrive in the country for shows. Rarely do local artists market their events in such a way.
The afternoon festivities were enough to prove the seriousness with which the organisers were handling their event.
In the evening, it was time to welcome Sulu’s “new baby” and the environment at Jazz 105 spoke volumes about investing in preparation.
The venue was neatly decorated for a top-class event. What caught the eye first was a decoration done by Parks and Wildlife Management at the venue’s entrance.
So, before the event even started, signs of a historic night were already there. It was obvious that the launch was not a hurried event. As the event took off, the proceedings and reception of guests were professional.
Most artists and event organisers tend to take album launches as mere shows where new songs are played. Sulu’s launch exhibited the importance of a serious budget when one needs to attract the needed attention.
Of course, Sulu did not shoulder all the expenses of the event alone. He engaged the corporate world and he was backed by various sponsors.
This should be a lesson to his fellow artists. A previous instalment of this column discussed the importance of engaging the corporate world for arts events and products.
Artists should realise the need to work with the business community to ease costs for various events and products. But artists should note the importance of a good reputation in such deals. No company wants to associate itself or its products with mediocrity.
Sulu also made sure that he invited personalities from government, showbiz and the business community. The event was graced by prominent people from these sectors.
The class of people that grace any occasion determine its magnitude and importance.
Sulu has set the bar high for his fellow musicians.
While it might be too early to measure the success of Syllabus, the new album promises to be a scorcher.