The state of Uganda’s music industry today

The state of Uganda’s music industry today

By Okello Dixon Bond

Ugandans love talking big but the fact is we still have a long way to catch up with other African countries.

From lack of facilities, inept organization and dealing with incompetent managers, promoters and sponsors, the music industry must unite and find the way forward.


There are no medium size venues, so if you’re not an A-list artist, and want to go on a national tour, it’s really difficult.

In Kampala, you might just about find something, but outside Kampala, it becomes really difficult, because either you are looking at open grounds or small bars/clubs.

Yes.. We have hotels and tents, some can seat 2,000 people. There are no arenas, and this is an area we must move into quickly.


There are very few competent promoters: Not many artists pull crowds; fans are not particularly loyal or specialized.

Mainstream music does not have die-hard fans, so most artists alone are not able to pull a crowd.

So if a promoter wants to put on a show, they have to bring the big guns, which you can only do with big sponsors.


Most brands don’t get it.

Their idea of success and their criteria are so warped, because they pay attention to the wrong details.

Some brands just want their logo on a flyer, they’re not about creating an experience.

Then you have brands who are just interested in the 20 VIP tickets.

We also have brands more interested in the red carpet aspect, instead of their customers’ experience.

The fact that people never have a great time, and never share a great experience with fellow fans, makes people not want to attend shows.

Most shows start late, drag on till late, it makes it costly or dangerous to go home.

It’s a mostly shitty experience to go to a large event. Sometimes they run out of drinks, or don’t even sell drinks altogether.


Not to mention security guys especially upcountry treating every single person in attendance like they’re football hooligans, girls getting harassed or robbed.

So the overall experience is… not great.