Singers, Bands & the Artist Management Team

As singers and bands compete for the ears of music industry pro’s, hoping to become the next greatest pop icon, mangers and the relationships with their acts have become increasingly important. With the evolution of technology, the internet and fledgling record labels, trying to compete for the next money making act, you can be sure that artist managers have their plates full sifting through myriads of press kits and demos trying to pick the needle out of the haystack.

With each demo that is sent out, artists wait in anticipation of what might become their next step in their artist career pathway. Most of the time, however, the group or singer is met with the, “Thanks for your submission, but no thanks,” letter at the door. What can singers and bands do to increase their odds of developing a relationship with an artist manager? Good question – Let’s look at some ideas and concepts that you can put to work as you try to move your career forward.

As a former talent booking agent with the William Morris Agency and as the owner of, I can tell you that one of the biggest walls that is built between artist managers and acts is a singer or group that is not prepared. They want the representation, but not the responsibility and financial demands that are placed upon them in the initial phase of their careers. They want someone to hold their hand and make it happen for them before they have sunk initial investments whether time, money or emotional investments that being maturity and basic music business knowledge and understanding. With this wall up you can forget it. There’s too much competition out there for a manager to waste their time – Would you? – Of course not and neither will they. Therefore, you make it your first priority to be prepared.

How do you prepare yourself or your band you ask? – Great question. Start with your music. Is your music the same run of the mill sound that’s already out there at countless levels? Does your music or style lend itself to marketing, or can if be differentiated from scores of others already signed to the majors? Be honest here. Quite honestly many individuals or acts have copied the sound of some other act and have not fully matured into developing their own sound. There’s nothing wrong with having musical influences, every act out there will tell you who has captured their musical hearts, but your sound has got to sound like you.

What does your press kit look like that you are sending out? Is it self-produced with fairly good looking pictures, bios, etc, or is it even a step below that? Your press kit has to shine and grab the attention of your music industry pros or you can forget it. Consider having your press kits reviewed and re-worked where necessary. You’re really missing the ball if you don’t have not only a professional looking press kit, but one that is specifically designed to get your act through the obscure doors of the music industry.

What are you doing now that is worthy of representation? Is it a dream or a real concrete musical idea that will grab the hearts of your listeners? Your listeners have to fall in love with your music. All it takes is one individual with a little clout at a record label to fall in love with your music for them to start talking you up in the halls. And with a little clout, nobody wants to be on the wrong side of the aisle on any given project, so therefore, the ball starts to roll. That’s how it usually works and good managers know this.

When you start out looking for a good manager you want to find out as best you can how authentic, honest and obviously go-getters they are. When you start to approach managers, understand that they only have so much time and resources. Da you say. Well put that information into practice. As you approach managers, what can you do to not only make their lives and jobs easier, but to let them know that you are not a “taker.” Do you know how many individuals, on a regular basis, who approach us wanting to be stars, who want us to invest all of our time and resources without offering anything in return? – Countless. Don’t do that. Offer something to your manager. Offer to help pay for the phones, press kits, postage, etc on behalf of your act. Now you’ve got the attention of the manager. He or she now knows that you are not a taker and are a serious contender in the music industry campaign. Never thought about that did you?

When you start to approach managers, your press kits, as previously detailed, need to exude professionalism. You will want to include a logo that has been specifically designed for you or your act. This logo should be remember able and characteristic of the emotional tone you want the act to initially portray and look like. Put this logo on all of your material including websites, pictures, bios, CD’s, etc. Don’t send out press kits without a logo. There is a lot of software out there to help you with logo creation, but if you need further help you may contact us or 615-300-5030 and we can help you with it.

In closing your approaching artist managers with the “We’ve got a great attitude and would like to do our part,” mentality will go along ways. Make sure that the demos you are sending out, are worthy to roll down the halls of the record labels with artist press kits that shine and show detailed experience and marketing knowledge sure to grab the attention of A&R directors. Do your part and hopefully one day an artist manager will do theirs on your behalf.