Music

Gallo teams up with Sony to 'take the best of African music to the world'

24 March 2021 - 10:04 By Toni Jaye Singer
Late reggae star Lucky Dube is one of the iconic artists whose work forms part of Gallo Music Publishing's rich catalogue of SA music.
Late reggae star Lucky Dube is one of the iconic artists whose work forms part of Gallo Music Publishing's rich catalogue of SA music.
Image: Gallo Music Publishing

Sony Music Publishing (SMP) SA has signed a major deal with Gallo Music Publishers (GMP) that’s set to create new opportunities for local musicians to soar on the international stage.

Fans will recognise SMP as the label behind global superstars such as Beyoncé, Ed Sheeran and Lady Gaga, as well as home-grown hitmakers including Matthew Mole, Mi Casa and the late Hugh Masekela.

The worldwide agreement, which excludes Africa, will create an opportunity for Gallo-published artists to collaborate with SMP’s roster of songwriters and have their tracks promoted overseas.

SMP will also bring its administration and synchronisation services to the table. It will help collect, distribute and expedite royalty payments across the world; create placement opportunities for GMP’s songs; and license its music for use in film, television programmes and commercials.

The history of Gallo is the history of SA music
Guy Henderson, president international at Sony Music Publishing

Meanwhile, GMP — the publishing arm of Gallo Record Company, one of Africa’s largest and oldest independent major labels — will bring its rich catalogue of iconic SA songs to the party. This includes works by the likes of multiple Grammy-winning group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse, Mango Groove and the late Lucky Dube.

As Guy Henderson, president international at SMP, put it: “The history of Gallo is the history of SA music.”

He added: “Having started my career at Gallo many years ago, I’m thrilled to be reunited with celebrated works from the likes of Stimela, Sipho Mabuse, Caiphus Semenya and so many others.

“Together, with SMP’s great roster of writers, we look forward to taking the best of African music to the rest of the world.”  

Rob Cowling, general manager at Gallo Music Group, said the partnership had been a long time in the making. “We feel our vast catalogue and the administration of this rich African heritage of songs outside Africa’s borders is in good hands with SMP.

“Their extensive network of professionals and systems, as well as a UK team with some African roots and knowledge of the content, will be valuable assets in managing GMP’s works and driving revenues for our composers and their beneficiaries.”


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