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Megan’s current predicament with her record label isn’t unique or new and this isn’t a Megan problem, it’s industry wide and has affected a lot of artists and that’s a problem which upcoming artistes need to learn to avoid.
megan thee stallion
We’ve seen this script countless times, a record label meets an artiste (most times upcoming), decides to invest in the artiste, draws up contract, presents to the artiste and the overly excited artiste signs the contract without proper consultation and representation from a lawyer. Few years later, the artiste is hitting mainstream and having numbers, no longer pleased with the contract terms and ends up asking for renegotiation which the record label agrees to or goes sideways which the artiste force their way out of the record label, then comes the law suits and many more troubles. Below are a few lessons to be learned by artistes.
1. No matter how attractive a deal is or how smart you think you are, always ensure you get proper consultation and representation from a legal team. Your legal team is expected to go through the contract and explain everything to you bit by bit, every step of the way. There’s no point rushing to sign a contract if you don’t fully understand the terms and legal complications of such contracts.


2.  Always expect the record label to get a higher percentage, especially as an upcoming act. You can’t expect a record label to invest in an artiste and not get high returns on such investments. Megan’s recording contract with 1501 entertainment ensures Megan receives 40% of her royalties, 70% of her merchandising, 70% of her performance revenue > $1000 (net), 100% of her performance revenue < $1000 (net) and this is quite a decent deal considering they created a platform for her to build herself. However if the label who according to Megan has breached the terms of the contract, then she has every right to take it up to court.

3. Ensure to sign a contract that’s within your capability and favorable time frame. Megan’s  deal calls for the delivery of one “full LP record,” with two options (two additional albums). Of note, for an album delivery to count toward the deal, it must clock-in at no less than 45 min and her highest runtime was “Fever” which clocked at 40:09.

4. Kizz Daniel under G-Worldwide signed a deal worth 5 albums within a period of 7 years. As good as he is, creating 5 LPs in 7 years is easier said than done, the only top artiste in Nigeria to do this is probably Olamide. Davido has 2 projects in 7 years (Son Of Mercy EP inclusive), Burnaboy has 5 in last 7 years with the “On A Spaceship” album not actually being a success and “Redemption” serves as an EP which puts him down to 3 albums.

5. I hope these few points would serve as an eye opener to upcoming acts. Record labels are business enterprises and not charity organizations, they are set up to maximize profits out of artistes, so its up to every artistes with their legal team in negotiating to get the best favorable deals for all parties while signing a contract.

By: Muyiwa Aguda

See also: Egungun Be Careful…Obesere, Hope You Take You Own Advice

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