The who’s who of the South African music industry can be seen in a fascinating new documentary about SAMRO to be aired on SABC1 on Sunday, 1 September 2013.

Titled Notes 2 Notes, the documentary was commissioned by SAMRO to commemorate its 50-year anniversary. It will be broadcast on SABC 1 on 1 September 2013 at 18h30 and will be repeated on 4 September 2013 at 13h30.

The 48-minute programme explores the company’s eventful history, as seen through the eyes of major industry players and presented in context with the development of contemporary music in the country. The documentary was produced by Emmy Award-winning local production house Rapid Blue and directed by Sara Blecher, with assistance from respected music guru Lloyd Ross. 

Notes 2 Notes charts the story of SAMRO from its modest beginnings in 1961 to the global Copyright Asset Management Services company it is today, protecting the intellectual property of over 12 000 members. It provides insights into how the music industry was shaped by the politics of the day, and how the organisation had to find ways of adapting to serve all its members.

Shooting the documentary required six months of production and dozens of people, from composers and producers to SAMRO employees,  were interviewed for their memories and views. This included members of the pioneering Roos family that founded SAMRO, as well as former SAMRO chief executives Rob Hooijer and Nick Motsatse, who took over the reins of a family-run organisation and ushered in a new era for the organisation.

“We wanted to not only pay homage to the roots of SAMRO as it reached its 50-year milestone, but also to highlight the people who played such a vital role in shaping it and setting its course during that time,” explains SAMRO CEO Sipho Dlamini.

The documentary team also interviewed former Chairman of the Board of Directors of SAMRO, Annette Emdon and eminent composer Professor Mzilikazi Khumalo, as well as musicians such as Simphiwe Dana, Kesivan Naidoo, Bongani Fassie, Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse and HHP.

Kee-Leen Irvine, Managing Director of Rapid Blue, relates: “We were really excited when SAMRO approached us to produce a documentary marking their 50th anniversary. We have huge admiration and respect for the work of the Roos family.”

Although Rapid Blue produces glossy television shows such as Strictly Come Dancing, SA’s Got Talent and Come Dine with Me, the company has a special affinity for documentaries – and, in fact, won an Emmy for Lion’s Trail, the story of Solomon Linda.

Irvine says they were delighted to learn that the commissioned documentary was not intended purely as a public relations vehicle for SAMRO: “Nick made it clear that he wanted a documentary that was truthful and fair. He also wanted to very clearly reflect the vision, passion and legacy of the Roos family.”

Adds Tiyani Maluleke, SAMRO’s General Manager: Marketing: “We specifically brought an independent production house of Rapid Blue’s calibre and stature on board because we were intent on the documentary being a warts-and-all account of SAMRO that didn’t gloss over any important details of the company’s history. So viewers will be getting the full story – and it’s truly an absorbing tale.”

Tune in to SABC1 at 18h30 on Spring Day, 1 September and 4 September 2013, to see music history come alive in Notes 2 Notes – the story of SAMRO.


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