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July 31, 2014
Star Entertainment


Some artistes killing the business says European booking agent

Borjan Tisma - Contributed

Borjan Tisma, who is a European-based booking agent, has blasted the state of the Jamaican music industry and said some artistes are killing the business with their unprofessionalism.

The straight-talking agent, who is based in Poland, started his company seven years ago in Serbia for his Serbian friend, a roots dub reggae artiste name Hornsman Coyote.

He has gone on to become a reputable source and is currently doing bookings for the likes of Anthony B, Lady Saw, Konshens, Dubtonic Kru, Gyptian, the No-Maddz, Lutan Fyah, Iba Mahr, Jah Bouks, RDX, Raging Fyah and Kabaka Pyramid.

However Tisma, who employs five full-time workers and three tour managers, said he is very concerned about the state of the Jamaican music industry as there are several artistes whose unprofessionalism and dishonesty is making it bad for their peers throughout Europe.

"There are no professional structure, no good manager. Even when the artistes have managers, I can't count on them. I have made deals with managers and the artistes don't respect them," he said.

Tisma believes that Europe remains an important market to Jamaican artistes, despite them making more money on gigs within the Caribbean and in the US.

"Europe is an important market for reggae. Maybe artistes won't make lot of money on tours, but Europe buy CDs and download songs from iTunes. Artistes' logic is; why should I go to Europe on 2-3 week tour to suffer, cause they don't sleep a lot, travels are not easy and then make the same money in three weeks that they could make from one or two shows in the Caribbean. But those are very short-term plans. I think Europe is very important for long-term purposes," he said.

Tisma has also singled out artistes who produce hate music towards homosexuals, those who cancel shows at the last minute, and those who make unrealistic requests.

"Artistes who promote violence towards gays will have a problem with bookings because hate music is a thing of the past. When artistes suddenly change his/her mind, it leaves a domino effect - agencies lose reputation cause they must cancel show, promoters lose audience's trust and then people blame all Jamaican artistes. So then, the good suffer for the bad," he said.

Tisma has recently agreed to do administrative work with Contractor Music Marketing, which is owned and operated by marketing guru Sean 'Contractor' Edwards.

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