Pirated or original?
If you want to save music, you need to save it from piracy.” Any music artiste would tell you this. When artists are completely dedicated towards music, they require certain financial benefits. Living a life of a celebrity is costly, together with looking after the family. It would perhaps not suit Sabin Rai to ride a micro. Nor will a taxi driver offer him a free ride. So no one can deny that living a life of celebrity is expensive. But can a celebrity earn enough to live in Nepal? The question counts because the answer would be “yes”. Obviously, Karna Das, Girish Khatiwada, and Sanjeev Singh would not have migrated abroad. All the celebrities want us “to buy the original copy”.
If they are having a tough time maintaining their finances, can’t it be that others too are going through tough times? And when it comes to monetary issues, human beings are greedy. Why would a music lover buy the original copy when he can get a DVDs or CD filled with dozens of albums for Rs 50.
Why should he spend Rs. 250 for the original single album? When there is no quality difference, why should a music lover rush for the original copy? I wonder how many Nepalese singers run after original CDs of international artistes. Without piracy, it is difficult to earn fame staying in Nepal for any music artiste.
I don’t mean to say that piracy should be allowed, but all I want
to say is that artistes must be able
to compete with piracy. If Robin Tamang decides to charge a cheap price for his album, something like Rs. 10, obviously his fans would not rush for the pirated copies.
Okay, such drastic changes may be difficult at this particular moment. How about promotions: collect three different original CDs of Nima Rumba and get 20 minutes talk time with him, or buy the original CDs of Sugam Pokharel and get a chance to dine with him in his house?
How about a bumper draw to feature Anil Singh in his new song? And what about promotions like “Buy original CD of Nabin K Bhattarai and get a chance of modeling in his upcoming videos?” Such skims can definitely bring changes in piracy tradition. For these however singers need to be active. However, the slogan “Kill Piracy, Save Music” would probably not work in the present context.