Cape Verdean songwriter Solange Cesarovna and German composer Jörg Evers are award recipients in 2023
10 November 2023 – Rio de Janeiro: Fair Trade Music International (FTMI) has announced Cape Verdean artist, lyricist and songwriter Solange Cesarovna and the late German songwriter and producer, Jörg Evers as recipients of the inaugural FTMI Award. The presentation was made by FTMI board members during the International Council of Music Authors (CIAM) general assembly in Brazil.
FTMI is an independent not-for-profit organisation founded in 2014 and backed by more than 500,000 music creators from around the world. The organisation is a member of the international CIAM partner alliance and counts many of the world’s largest music authors’ societies among its supporters. The FTMI Award aims to celebrate the outstanding contributions that individual creators, campaigners and law makers are making to the cause of fair remuneration in music. In 2023, the FTMI Award comprises two individual accolades for outstanding and for lifetime achievements.
The economic and moral rights of music creators have never been more under threat,” said Eddie Schwartz, FTMI board member and CIAM President. “And we rarely hear about the songwriters and composers working tirelessly to promote and protect these rights. We hope these two awards give some recognition to their invaluable work.”
1. Outstanding achievement award
The 2023 recipient of the FTMI outstanding achievement award is Solange Cesarovna. An accomplished African artist, lyricist and songwriter, Ms Cesarovna has played a pivotal role in establishing a new collective management organisation in her home country of Cabo Verde. Under her leadership, the Sociedade Cabo-Verdiana de Música (SCM) has transformed the country’s music sector for composers, songwriters, publishers and producers. The copyright management system that she spearheaded ensures that fair royalties are received whenever their songs are used and extends to digital platforms such as YouTube, Spotify and TikTok. After ten years of operation, SCM now represents more than 30 million works and sound recordings from around the world and has more than 1,700 members, all from a national population of just half a million people.
Ms Cesarovna remains an inspiring ambassador for African music creators around the world. Travelling to Rio de Janeiro to collect the award in person, she delivered an insightful speech to delegates on the challenges faced by songwriters and composers in her home region.
“I am still moved by my selection for this award,” said Ms Cesarovna. “This is infinitely special to me, because it comes from brilliant composers and songwriters who are part of the CIAM and FTMI families, and who are true heroes in the defence of fairness.”
2. Lifetime achievement award
The 2023 recipient of the FTMI lifetime achievement award is the late Jörg Evers, a composer, lyricist, producer and lifelong advocate for the rights of music creators. After founding one of the first Munich punk bands in the 1970s, Jörg studied orchestration and arranging at the Richard Strauss Conservatory and began composing for recording artists, TV, film and commercial clients. Over the next two decades, he wrote and produced a stream of gold and platinum records, receiving numerous international accolades including two ASCAP awards and a best composer prize at the Tokyo Music Festival.
Following this, Jörg began to dedicate more of his time to supporting the rights of his fellow creators. He joined the German Composers’ Association in 1997 and served as its president from 2006 to 2012. He became a supervisory board member of German music authors society GEMA in 2000 and served as its chair from 2009 to 2012. He was a board member for the European Composers and Songwriters Alliance from 2008 to 2016 and a long-time adviser to Fair Trade Music International. He also held the position of CIAM Vice President from 2018 to his death in February 2023.
Accepting the award in person on behalf of Jörg’s family was long-time colleague, Lorenzo Ferrero, honorary president of CIAM.
“I’m delighted to collect Jörg’s well-deserved award,” said Mr Ferrero. “As well as being a wonderful friend to us all, Jörg was a highly creative artist who used his knowledgeable and passionate voice to campaign for the interests of music creators all over the world. He continues to be a benchmark for us all.”
About Fair Trade Music International
Founded in 2014, Fair Trade Music International (FTMI) is an independent, not-for-profit organisation backed by more than 500,000 music creators from around the world. It combines a board of renown songwriters and industry experts with global networking, education and awareness initiatives to promote the emergence of an ethical, sustainable and transparent music ecosystem. FTMI aims to help people make ethical choices when producing, distributing or streaming music. It works towards a modern digital music economy that incentivises creativity, increases access to new work and is equitable for everyone in the music value chain. More at www.fairtrademusicinternational.org.
About the International Council of Music Creators
The International Council of Music Creators (CIAM) was created in 1966 to advocate for the cultural and professional aspirations of music creators. CIAM focuses on economic and legal interests, serves as a forum for the exchange of information, ideas and best practices, and provides practical advice to help musical creators achieve their goals. CIAM’s mission is to serve as the unified global voice of music creators of all repertoires, and from all regions of the world. More at www.ciamcreators.org.