Freemuse Newsletter no. 2 / 2005


Freemuse Newsletter no. 2 / 2005



  Zimbabwe:  Censor meets musicians

  Cuba:  Gorki is out of prison

  Censorship of female musicians:  An overview  New web editor

  Middle East:  Meeting on freedom of musical expression

  West Africa:  Freemuse seminar in Senegal

  Ghana:  Hiplife under attack

  Ghana:  New copyright law an encroachment on human rights

  ‘Shoot the Singer’:  Soon in four languages


Zimbabwe: Censor meets musicians

For the first time a representative from the Zimbabwean Censorship Board met last week in an open discussion forum with representatives from the Zimbabwean music industry and media. Supported by Freemuse the seminar held at Harare’s Mannenburg Jazz Club in the last week of April dealt with the fear from musicians of the repressive political system in Zimbabwe, and the total radio and television control by the state.

[  A report and several documents from the seminar will 

   be published at later this month. ]

Cuba: Gorki is out of prison

After almost two years in prison, Cuban rock rebel Gorki Luis Águila Carrasco was released on 16 March 2005. Freemuse launched an international campaign for his release in October 2003. Information has been received that he has been granted conditional release, but details are still unknown.

[

Censorship of female musicians: An overview

In April, Freemuse published a substantial summary on the restrictions women have had as singers, as composers and as instrumentalists from the Middle Ages until today. The 28-page article, by Freemuse intern Eva Fenn, is illustrated with individual examples from all over the world.

[ Read more: ] New web editor

The website is an extensive and updated database about censorship on music world-wide. Journalist Mik Aidt, 42, has recently been assigned as the new editor of the site. For the past two decades he has been deeply involved in the field of world music, namely as a music editor at the Danish Broadcasting Corporation radio station DR P3, and as editor-in-chief of the Danish ‘Djembe Magazine’.

[

Middle East: Meeting on freedom of musical expression

On April 1, Freemuse hosted a roundtable meeting in Amman, bringing together a small group of artists and organisers from the cultural scene of the nearby region. The meeting provided the base for a discussion forum, and the participants brought up a range of ideas and viewpoints. The meeting also helped identifying contacts as well as key issues to proceed with.

[

West Africa: Freemuse seminar in Senegal

On April 9-10, Freemuse hosted a seminar at the Gorée Institute in Senegal on music and censorship in West Africa. The seminar focused on possible relationships between democracy and vibrant music cultures and how religious, political and other power structures play a significant role in repression of musical cultures.

[

Ghana: Hiplife under attack

Hiplife, the local Ghanaian version of Hip Hop, is under constant attack from “moral groups” in the country. Commentators are running a campaign to censor so-called “profane music”, and the National Communication Authority of Ghana is being asked to ban music styles such as Hiplife on the radios.

[

Ghana: New copyright law an encroachment on human rights

In Ghana a proposed copyright bill intends to forbid musicians use of folkloric melodies and rhythms in their music unless they get authorisation to do so and pay for the use. Assisted by Freemuse, a coalition of musicians has made the president of Ghana aware that the bill is an imposition and encroachment on fundamental human rights, and as a result, he has now intervened in the process.

[

‘Shoot the Singer’: Soon in four languages

The book ‘Shoot the Singer! Music Censorship Today’, edited by Freemuse executive director Marie Korpe, and published by Zed Books (2004, London), will be published in Finnish later this year. Further, editions in Russian and Spanish are expected in 2006.

[


For more info and latest news, please visit

Kind regards,

Freemuse – The World Forum on Music and Censorship 
Nytorv 17, 3rd floor
1450 Copenhagen K    Denmark
tel  +45 33 32 10 27

Freemuse (FREEdom of MUSical Expression) is an international human rights organization advocating freedom of expression for musicians and composers worldwide.


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