The Artist Manager can make a breakthrough career path for an Artist’s Creative Career. It will be fair to say that this is the most important relationship Artists have. The Artist Manager is not just a close confidant of the Artist but also is a mentor, friend, critic, business manager, deal maker, fellow musician, the most hated person in the room, a bridge between the studio working & external business environment, an extended family member and someone who does the heavy lifting of all the grief of all the creative explosions that erupt many a times like a volcano.
This series is dedicated to the unsung heroes who shape, form and create the hedgehog for a musician’s career not just for the musical works but also on the commercialization of the Artistic Works. They tirelessly work in establishing the Goals for their Artist comprising Mission, Vision, Strategy, and Partnerships.
Troy Carter once said “ If you can’t see it, you can’t be it. The way it works is, is the manager’s sort of, you know, is the hub of an artist’s career.”
Artist Manager being the hub is the first basic step in the creation of a deep emotional relationship between the Artist & their Artist Manager. It is like a marriage of sorts, the commitment has to be that strong, values creation is immense and risks are extreme. In a way, the Artist Manager is a synchronized image of the thoughts that run through an Artist’s mind while composing music. It is this ability of the Artist Manager that leads synchronization of thoughts into a visualization of artist journey. They breathe, they feel, they live, they build, they negotiate, they are true architects.
Irvin Azoff puts it beautifully “ I can’t think of any more powerful moment than when you stand on stage.” His relationships analysis with the powerful talent he worked with is summarized in his own words “I don’t want to not be important. It comes down to that …. business tactic ; the guy that yells the loudest is the winner.”
Artist Manager’s influenced network
Artist Management is about craftsmanship in building a long-lasting structure and influencing & bringing in the relationships that will become part of a 360 Artist Development Structure.
To develop and deliver this network it requires diligence, smart work, and hardcore negotiations. Sharon Osbourne once said “I like to be honest. After all these years I can’t be bothered being politically correct.”
Role of an Artist Manager
No matter how good the music and musician, if you don’t have a good artist manager, you will not be able to reach the pinnacle of success and your creativity will not be optimized to its fullest extent. It is therefore very important that he Artist Manager shares a strong bond with the Artist and is chosen wisely.
Aloysius Lobo who has been managing Laxmi Bomb, Mumbai’s premier Indie Music Band highlights
Not only are Artist Managers a catalyst to the success of any act, they are also a support system, advisors and the glue that holds it all together. In the current ever changing music landscape, any good artiste manager needs to be constantly learning about both the live business as well as how to monetise their music effectively. Overall, a managers focus should be to just let the artiste make music and leave everything else to them., Aloysius Lobo, Laxmi Bomb
It’s a marriage, it has to be the artist & manager together, a collective vision, risk, effort, patience! – Jovan Martins,
Adding to this Avinash Bidaia, Head Of Music Business At KWAN Entertainment says It’s about the mutual value creation, it can’t be a one-way street. We only represent an artist until we are adding value to their life.
A good artist manager must have a majority of the following traits and an artist must think through before appointing a manager of choice:
- An Artist Manager must not have music as a hobby and should identify with the artist persona to gauge whether this will be a relationship for a long haul or not.
- Keep the Artist visible no matter how busy the schedule is. Regular Communication is the key to a successful artistic career.
- Goal settings for the Artist across a 360 spectrum [Live, Recording, Song Writing, Merchandising, Socializing etc.] with clear economic goals for commercial success & deal-making.
- Taking the artist beyond fame, money, and success by creating a positive aura around the artist. The positivity has a legacy effect, which will go beyond the lifetime of the talent.
- Possess the passion for the business and think constantly out-of-the-box. This is uniqueness.
- Enforce a partnership style business model with the Artist through a written contract that explicitly states duties, roles, term, compensation, reimbursable expenses, financial accounting procedures, non-compete, transparency etc.
- Management abilities to getting things done for the artist by other people and companies.
- Registration of works and classification of income streams through record sales, publishing, live performances, merchandising.
- Make Artist align to technology and digital eco-system. The important aspect here is in alignment to technology that syncs with core values of the Artist. Random usage of technology makes no value.
- Annual Career Planning, Date Wise Tracking, Scorecard setting and means to measure this against Goals with the contingency built in a Critical Warnings Red Flagged.
- Ensure on Artist’s Health Insurance and Financial Insurance.
- Be innovative, low-cost Fans engagement modules, create evangelists.
- Design the Marketing and Communication Strategy Structure in line to PDSAR = Plan, Do, Study, Act .. Repeat
- Management of Money, regular balance sheets provisioning to the Artist and profits alignment to Core Values of the Artist.
- Promptly deal with the problem and seek diverse expert/s advice on a regular basis.
- Address the biggest conflict area in the beginning of the relationship through a fair amount of discussions, documentation around Artist Indemnities and Sun-Set Clause.
Thus, Artist-Manager relationship works precisely like a creation of a new musical work. From scratch to master recording many adaptations happen during the process of creating the right musical work, which is eventually a reflection of the artistic capability of the artist, the values an artist stands for and communication of life experiences of the artist.