Law & Policy, Music Business

Naeto C & Concert Promoter Battle Over ₦500,000 Payment and Naeto C No Show #Live Performance Agreements

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As Nigeria’s music industry continues to grow, there becomes an increased need to tighten all aspects of how the industry does business, especially where concerts are involved. Where concerts are involved, both effective live performance agreements and glitch free executions of the terms of these agreements, to the degree possible, become crucial.

To that end, a couple of key facts to note, particularly for purposes of  the case I am about to discuss with you all, are as follows:

Fact #1 – Concerts remain a primary source of income for artists in Nigeria. For both emerging and established artists, to make ends meet, concerts are critical. Music piracy, among other issues, deny artists return on their investments. Concerts and the promoters that put on these concerts, therefore, play important roles to help these artists feed themselves and afford the luxurious lifestyles some are beginning to have.

Fact #2 – Unlike Nigerian and African promoters in the USA who have let things slide when some artists failed to meet their end of the bargain, promoters in Nigeria, particularly in Benin, Edo State, appear unwilling to put up with the mess. This year, we’ve seen P-Square sued by an Edo promoter. The case is still pending in court. We’ve also heard cases of brouhahas where Benin, Edo State promoters are involved with artists. This recent case involving Naeto C serves as further exhibit of the changing landscape of the music industry and the need to really get it together on both the promoter and the artist end.

Civil Litigation:Promoter Agreements

The fact pattern below raises the issue of artist-promoter live performance agreements. I’ve covered this discussion in my article/post on D’banj’s call for Promoters having their act together.

Criminal Litigation: Battery

The fact pattern below also raises the issue of criminal assault/battery. We’ve seen assault/battery cases in two instances here on 1) Dencia v. Liz Garvy Headies ; and 2)  Olisa Adibua v. Beat FM 99.9 aggravated assault/battery case. You all should reference these cases to see possible scenario, on the legal front, that could play out on the Naeto C v. Benin Concert Promoter, if indeed the alleged facts are true. This is especially true since the NET online indicates the concert promoter was arrested and released on bail.

QUESTION: Under the alleged facts below, why did the hotel manager open Naeto C’s room? Was she under duress? If not, I’d avoid that hotel like a plague.



“Nigerian rapper Naeto C spent the recent Eid-El-Kabir holidays in Benin locked in a hotel room in an attempt to avoid the wrought of show organizers he had differences with.

According to Ehiglad, organizers of the show, they had approached Naeto C last month to perform at a gig called Love Concert 3 in Benin. The show which took place on Saturday, November 5, 2011 at the very popular night club Hexagon, was headlined by Terry G and featured other Nigerian acts like Sound Sultan, Gandoki and Bovi.

A friend of the organizer of the show, Edo based entertainment boss Andy Bello tells us Naeto C settled for a performance fee of N500,000. In addition, his flight to and fro Benin was also to be taken care of. Bello says the performance fee was then paid in full.

Naeto C and two crew members landed in Benin on the day of the show and even tweeted about it. ‘In Benin with the crew, Gandoki has kept me laughing 4 3hrs, my ribs are sore lol’, @NaetoC tweeted.

‘When the time came to perform, the rapper told us that he wouldn’t step out of his room if he hadn’t be paid the return ticket fees for him and his crew. In addition to that he also said that he would be granting any interviews as that was not part of their initial agreement’, Andy Bello tells NET

‘We pleaded with him and even when comedian Gandoki offered to pay N50,000 to assist, he turned it down’, he added.

We’re told all efforts to get Naeto to the concert proved abortive, the show was forced go on without him.

A source who attended the show says Naeto C never showed up at the club. ‘We partied till around 4AM, he never showed up’.

The show ended a few minutes past 5AM and the organizers who were furious at this point marched towards the Wesley Hotel situated at No. 2 Aguele Street, Off Aikhionbare Street, G.R.A., Benin City, (a call was made to the official phone number gotten from the hotel’s website and it was confirmed that Naeto indeed lodged there).

‘When we got there and tried gaining access to the rapper’s hotel room, we met it locked. The hotel management confirmed the rapper and his crew were still inside the room and after a while, the organizers requested the hotel manager bring the master key’.

The manager of the hotel Mr Wesley brought the master key which was used to open the door. The organizers barged in and confronted Naeto. One of the organizers then slapped Naeto C. The rapper dazed, was said to have calmly replied ‘I’m a simple guy, let’s try to work it out’.

We are told Naeto C was then escorted by soldiers to a nearby ATM where he was asked to withdraw money in a bid to return the performance fee. We hear Gandoki also supported in paying back the money. The organizers have stated that Naeto refunded performance fee.”

NET has the full story.

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Africa Music Law™

AFRICA MUSIC LAW™ (AML) is a pioneering music business and entertainment law blog and podcast show by Fashion and Entertainment Lawyer Ms. Uduak Oduok empowering the African artist and Africa's rapidly evolving entertainment industry through brilliant music business and entertainment law commentary and analysis, industry news, and exclusive interviews.

Credited for several firsts in the fashion and entertainment industry, Ms. Uduak is also a Partner and Co-Founder of Ebitu Law Group, P.C. where she handles her law firm’s intellectual property law, media, business, fashion, and entertainment law practice areas. She has litigated a wide variety of cases in California courts and handled a variety of entertainment deals for clients in the USA, Africa, and Asia.

Her work and contributions to the creative industry have been recognized by numerous organizations including the National Bar Association, The American University School of Law and featured in prestigious legal publications in the USA including ABA Journal and The California Lawyer Magazine. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the prestigious Academy of Arts University in San Francisco.
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