Pastor Charamba Receives One Line Apology from Jah Signal
18 February 2024
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By Showbiz Reporter | In a copyright dispute that has sent shockwaves through the Zimbabwean music industry, gospel power couple Baba Charles and Amai Oliver Charamba have successfully enforced their intellectual property rights against dancehall artist Jah Signal. The Charambas, alongside Fishers of Men, have caused YouTube to remove Jah Signal’s renditions of their two songs, “Shinga Muroora” and “Tengai Mafuta,” citing unauthorized usage.

Jah Signal, also known as Nicodimus Mutize, had garnered significant attention with his versions of the Charambas’ songs, amassing millions of views on YouTube. However, the Charambas were quick to assert their rights, highlighting that Jah Signal had neither sought nor received consent to use their compositions.

The dispute centers around Jah Signal’s recordings, particularly his rendition of “Shinga Muroora,” originally composed by the Charambas and featured on their 2001 album, “Exodus.” Despite their objections raised back in 2018, Jah Signal proceeded to release the song without acknowledgment or authorization. Similarly, his remix of “Tengai Mafuta,” a track from Mai Charamba’s 2007 album “The Gospel,” faced the same fate.

Responding to the controversy, the Charambas clarified that their actions were not aimed at stifling Jah Signal’s career but rather at upholding copyright laws and raising awareness within the industry. They emphasized the importance of obtaining consent, acknowledging original composers, and respecting moral rights.

While expressing goodwill towards Jah Signal’s career, the Charambas underscored the need for all artists to be vigilant against copyright infringement. They urged fellow musicians and music managers to familiarize themselves with intellectual property laws to avoid legal complications and safeguard their creative works.

This incident sheds light on broader challenges within the Zimbabwean music landscape, where many artists remain unaware of copyright laws and intellectual property rights. According to the Zimbabwe Music Rights Association (Zimura), the lack of understanding about copyright among local artists poses significant risks to their careers and the industry as a whole.

Zimura’s executive director, Polisile Ncube-Chimhini, urged artists to take advantage of free copyright workshops and educational resources to avoid inadvertently infringing on others’ intellectual property.

As the music industry continues to evolve, cases like this serve as a reminder of the importance of respecting artistic integrity and legal frameworks to ensure fair compensation and protection for creators.

Stay tuned for further developments as this story unfolds.