Sauti Sol Terminate Contract With Universal Music Group: ‘Going Independent Is The Future’

Sauti Sol have terminated their contract with Universal Music Group Africa.

Bien Aime Baraza said that the group had to walk away from the label after failing to reach an agreement. They inked the deal just two years ago.

Sauti Sol

“It was either we sign another contract or we cancel the current one, we terminated it,” Bien said.

“We went independent again. So right now we have recorded another album. Licensing and distribution will be done by others.”

On why the trio decided to leave the label, Bien confessed that it downed on them that they weren’t on the same page in terms of vision.

Sauti Sol’s First album under the label

The group was focused on moving to newer markets while Universal wanted them local.

“After working with Universal, I have realised one thing. Going international haiko kwa ule msee unawork na yeye. Iko kwa kichwa yako, it’s in your mind. So kisanii lazima kwanza umekuwa umeji elevate. So us, Sauti Sol, we were already there, mentally and musically, too,” added Bien.

Midnight Train was Sauti Sol’s first project with the international label.

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In January 2020, Sauti Sol signed the 360 deal which was branded “historic and a game changer” to the East African market.

They had further penned an additional, 3-year Ksh 50 million deal with Universal for their new label Sol Generation.

Following the split, Bien confessed that artists shouldn’t be thinking about label contracts at this age because going independent comes with a lot of freedom of creation and playroom.

“Much as we worked with Universal, I feel it’s been a good relationship, we have split amicably in terms of we are going independent for our next project,” he said.

“Artistes right now don’t need to be signed to a label. Be independent.”


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