Music offers a vast array of job opportunities, from the stars who make it to the top of the charts to the PR people that make the noise behind the scenes. And let’s not beat around the bush, here – if you make it in music you know there will be significant monetary and lifestyle benefits that go along with it.
And the interesting thing about music is that wherever there are musicians, there is a significant demand for managers. And it’s something you can get into at any time of your life. Hear a great band in your local pub who you think could make a better go of things? Why not approach them to see if you can lend them a hand?
If you manage to back a winner, it could be an excellent way to earn a living: touring, gigs, and travel will all be available to you in spades.
But let’s be clear: not everyone has what it takes to manage a musician or a band. Here are some of the skills and traits you will need if you want to succeed. Let’s take a closer look.
Spot an opportunity
First of all, while there are no qualifications needed to get into music management, you will need to know what you are talking about. If you understand the principles of music, however, and have a little knowledge about how the industry works, it’s enough to get you started. Take Coran Capshaw as the perfect example. As a bar owner, he was the first to spot The Dave Matthews Band and helped the group make their mark in the music world. Now he is an award winning music manager with a huge roster of clients and is even executive producing albums by major stars.
Deal with chaos
The trouble with the glamorous world of pop music is that it is almost entirely chaotic. Days turn into long nights, which then turn into sleepless weekends. You will have to deal with ridiculous artistic demands, arguments between band members, and keep a close rein over the musician’s PR. There are promotions to consider, too, as well as connections to make ad networks to build. And all the while dealing with the hectic, fast-paced environment of touring and rock ‘n roll.
Can you take rejection well? If not, there is every chance you will fail within months in your new career of music or band manager. Ultimately, when you are just starting out with an up and coming group, you will find more doors slamming shut in your face rather than be welcomed in. And given that you need to put your own hopes and dreams on hold for the sake of making it happen for the band, it can be incredibly disheartening. If you have nerves of steel and won’t take no for an answer, however, it’s another story entirely.
You need a broad skill set to make it as a music manager. You will be a boss and an employee at the same time, so it’s like no other job in the world. And at the end of the day, you will find you have to put the needs of your band before your own if you want to help them achieve their dreams. But you also need to be steely, tough, and an excellent communicator.
Have you got what it takes?