Kwame Ametepe Tsikata, an award-winning rap musician known in showbiz as “Manifest”, has called for more support from academia for popular music.
He said popular music should not just be seen as a source of entertainment, but required proper academic and research work to benefit the country in diverse ways.
Tsikata, urged the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences and other academic institutions to support the study of popular music, because it had more to offer than just entertainment.
Manifest was speaking at the Ephraim Amu Memorial lectures in Accra organised by the Ghana Academy of Arts and Science under the theme “Re-imagining us: the role of popular music in self-actualization”.
The 2017 Ghana Music Awards Best Rapper said, Popular Musicians in Ghana were faced with series of challenges, which hindered them from maximizing profit in the industry.
“Looking at the popular music today, what I can say is that it goes back and forth at the same time, because if you look at the industry today it needs help like resource, infrastructure and the rest.
“We lack somethings in the industry but as for creativity, everybody is doing well. That is the positives in the industry but for the challenges, we must work on that,” he said.
According to him, popular music had several potentials which could be harnessed to develop the country in many ways.
He said Ephraim Amu started popular music in Ghana and the young talents took the genre a notch higher and made Amu proud wherever he was.
Professor Agyemang Badu Akosa, a fellow at the Ghanaian Academy of Arts and Sciences said this year’s lecture became necessary with the rise of popular music as one of the most significant influencers in shaping the attitudes of people.
He said the Academy was impressed with level of engagement and involvement of the students with Manifest. He said the Academy would invite more young achievers in diverse ways in the society to interact with Academy.
Manifest is the youngest person outside academia, to be selected as the main speaker of the Ephraim Amu Memorial lectures organised by the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences.
The choice of Manifest as the speaker for this year’s lecture was to pay tribute to Dr Ephraim Amu and Prof J.H Nketia, both academics who studied music at the highest level.
The Ephraim Amu Memorial Lecture was instituted by the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences through the initiative of Prof J.H. Nketia in 1999. The annual lecture series has featured prominent scholars most of whom are fellows of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences.