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YouTube offers scholarship to black artistes

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By Maryam Sulaiman Maintain

YouTube Music says it is offering scholarship to scores of black artistes to help them commercialise their work.

Alex Okosi, YouTube’s Managing Director for Emerging Markets, said in a statement that it would open grant applications for the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund Class of 2022 from June 21, 2021.

Okosi said that the six-month scholarship term would see recipients undertake courses in music production, engineering, songwriting, mixing, music business and much more.

According to him, eligibility has been expanded to include songwriters and producers, allowing black artistes residing in Kenya, South Africa, Nigeria, Canada, United Kingdom, United states, Brazil and Australia, to apply.

‘’YouTube Music was also launching a new partnership with renowned music education institution, 1500 Sound Academy, founded by GRAMMY-award winning songwriter and producer, James Fauntleroy and Larrance “Rance” Dopson.

‘’Through the inaugural #YouTubeBlack Music Future Insiders Scholarship, YouTube would fund 10 full ride scholarships to the Academy’s Live Online 1500 Music & Industry Fundamentals programme.

“The YouTube Music team is excited to expand the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund and create new opportunities while also reflecting on the progress made to date,” said Okosi.

According to him, the six-month scholarship term will see recipients undertake courses in music production, engineering, songwriting, mixing, music business and much more,” he added.

Okosi said that through the inaugural Class of 2021, the #YouTubeBlack Voices Fund provided resources including dedicated one-on-one support, seed funding, training and networking.

He said that others include programmes enabling the 21 grantees achieve incredible growth, not only on YouTube, but also in their careers which included from Jan. 2021 through April 2021, the class collectively received 1.4B views on their official artiste channels

Okosi said that the six artistes saw over 50 per cent growth on official artiste channel subscribers while four artistes saw 200 per cent growth on their official artiste channel views.

He said that other achievements were as part of YouTube Music’s Africa Month celebration, Sho Madjozi, Sauti Sol, and Fireboy DML, hosted exclusive live stream virtual concerts on each of their Official Artist Channels, among others.

According to him, Future Insiders a Podcast, aims to equip at-risk and underserved youth, who aspire to enter the music and creative industries, with skills on content development.

He said that following the programme’s early success, Future Insiders would be expanded globally with more details to be shared later .

Also, to celebrate Black culture, YouTube Music has activated #YouTubeMusic Moments – a collection of content series, live streams, and events whose primary goal is to celebrate Black culture, identity, and experiences.(NAN)

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