Missed Opportunity! Jermaine Edwards’ Team Jumping on the Bandwagon Late
If you have been on TikTok recently, you have seen the video of the little boy at his school singing "Beautiful Day" by Jermaine Edwards. The video was taken when Rushawn Ewears was 10 years old; a few years later, TikTok users got hold of it. The video has since become a massive sound on the platform receiving 14.6 million views and 1.6 million likes. The sound has since gained the attention of a few producers and artists who have made remixes and covers, including samples from the video.
One particular producer, MJ Hanks, made a remix that gained 18 million views and 2.2 million likes. Hanks explained on TikTok, in a video that has since been deleted, that Jermaine Edwards heard the remix and was up for collaborating. Hanks agreed to collaborate once Rushawn was a part of it. In response, Edwards explained that his team was not interested. This is where Edwards' team fumbled a great opportunity, but if we're being honest, his team has been fumbling this opportunity for five years.
This isn't the first time Rushawn's video has made its way on social media. His teacher recorded the video in 2017, and it has been seen by many social media users since. Edward's management team could have collaborated with Rushawn years ago but chose not to. This highlights an issue among management teams who need to consider innovation.
The diffusion of the innovation curve by Everett Rogers shows the different stages at which various groups adopt innovation in society. An artist should always aim to fall into the innovator category. Innovative artists are always remembered for their impact on the industry. It's been five years, and this month is the first time we've seen Jermaine Edwards and Rushawn together. It is not like Edward's team didn't get the opportunity to do so before, as detailed by Hanks' exchange with Edwards.
Of course, their interests changed when two other musicians' projects with samples from Rushawn's video gained traction after being posted on Spotify and YouTube.
In just five days, TRINIX's remix has gained over 400k views on YouTube, and The Kiffness's cover has over 3 million views since being posted two weeks ago. Suddenly, Edward's team was interested in working with Rushawn as a video was posted on Jermaine Edward's Instagram showing the two meeting up. Why the change of heart?
Now that they have seen how others have benefitted, they also want to benefit. This is understandable; however, it would've been even better if Edwards' team had been ahead of the trend. It would've given "Beautiful Day" the chance to be revitalised, similar to Omi's "Cheerleader" revitalisation in 2015. It went from a hit to a global sensation because of a remix. "Beautiful Day" receiving the "Cheerleader" treatment would be great as it's a beautiful song with a powerful message.
Also, Edwards' team missed a grand opportunity to diversify his audience. Hanks' audience is international, as he is from the United States and has a large following on TikTok. This would've been the perfect chance to expand the artist's audience and reach international markets. This is demonstrated by just how much that video is loved by many locally and abroad. TikTok has become a filter to Spotify as when a creator's music blows up on TikTok, their Spotify listeners increase.
If you go through TRINIX's and The Kiffness's TikTok posts of their projects using the sample, every commenter loves their work and is practically begging for the song to be put on Spotify. Jermaine Edward's team could have benefited from this ages ago if they had looked at the bigger picture.
Even though Edwards and Rushawn have finally crossed paths, it would've been nice to see Edwards working with Rushawn the moment that video came out. It would've been so heartwarming to see them working together over the years and sharing a bond. It would've been awesome to know that Edwards's team cared about him before his video reached this level of popularity today. Now, they only care because the video has gone viral. Regardless, Rushawn's fans are happy to see him finally get recognised for the video that has given them so much joy. It's also great to note that Rushawn is receiving royalties from The Kiffness' cover, including his sample.