Music selector Bishop Escobar is pleading with his co-workers to desist from allowing their love of money and greed to mar the entertainment value at events. Speaking specifically to the practice of ‘money pull-ups’, which involves DJs opting to take money to replay songs at events, the selector believes that patrons are being short-changed.
Escobar himself has accepted money pull-ups for songs. However, he believes some DJs have abused the practice by accepting too much cash, and in turn, spend too much time replaying the same song over and over, ultimately losing the interest of patrons.
“If I am getting too much money pull-ups, I will say stop, I don’t want anymore. Some DJs, when they start to get the money pull-ups, they don’t know how to monitor it and, as such, they get carried away. You have all some man come to events and are throwing money at the DJ. I don’t tolerate that. Have some respect for my working area, I am no stripper,” he said.
The selector also holds the view that some persons are in music to hustle and are not necessarily trying to contribute to its development.
While the practice of money pull-ups is not formally categorised as payola, Escobar believes it does have an impact on the promotion of music.
NOT REALLY PAYOLA
“It’s not really payola but it’s almost like it. The thing with payola is that you have an obligation to the person who you collected money from to play it in all your sets. But with money pull-ups, DJs have no obligation to play the song outside of the particular event,” he said.
Former artiste road manager turned recording artiste, Byll Gatezs, also shared a similar view.
“Mi a work with some people in Panama and mi have a song on the Tambrine rhythm. Since I started promoting the songs, I realised the trouble with money pull-ups. I just want to say stop sell out the music for money pull-ups. One song a play all 20 times in the dancehall, so when you are trying to hear your song, you can’t hear it, because one song a get overplayed,” he said.
Bishop Escobar also noted that the quality of Jamaican music is being compromised by money pull-ups and payola, since DJs will play any song (good or bad quality) once money is brought into the mix.