MMF REPORT CALLS FOR RE-EVALUATION OF MUSIC MANAGER’S ROLE
FULL REPORT LINK BELOW
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE
NEWS PROVIDED BY
Published today, a new report from the MMF explores the changing face of music management - highlighting the increasingly pivotal role played by music managers, while identifying potential barriers to business growth that may hold back vital support for the UK’s artists, songwriters and producers.
The report, titled Managing Expectations, is underpinned by a survey of more than 180 music managers as well as in-depth interviews conducted by Music Ally’s Eamonn Forde with managers representing acts including The 1975, Gorillaz, Mumford & Sons, Robbie Williams, J Hus, Little Simz, Nick Cave, The xx, Blue Lab Beats, Two Door Cinema Club and Bill Ryder-Jones.
In detail, it examines how managers support talent development, their relationships with record labels, the diverse and expanding skills set they require, the challenges around mental health, and the evolving commercial models between music managers and both their creative clients and industry partners.
Previewed on Thursday evening (October 31st) at BBC Music Introducing LIVE, the wide-reaching research also indicates a potential disconnect between the increased workload and expectancies shouldered by music managers, and the mechanisms by which they are paid - with the majority still dependent upon a pre-digital commission-based models.
“‘Managing Expectations’ highlights how music managers are taking up an ever-increasing portfolio of work as the industry becomes more open and also more complex. In reaction to that, management businesses are evolving and taking alternate paths as well as demanding more equitable treatment for those they represent. We’re increasingly investors too. And as we’re putting more in, it’s no surprise that management deals are changing to reflect this. It’s an incredibly exciting time, there is always more to learn, and it feels at times like an entirely new industry is being forged.”
Ellie Giles, Step Music Management:
“The music industry has changed enormously this century, and so has the role and purpose of the music manager. Each manager and management company may take a very different approach, but they are all ultimately doing the same thing: building careers and businesses for their artists.”
Brian Message, ATC Management:
“Managers are multi-faceted, multi-talented rainmakers. They are the people who get things done. The great beauty and great curse of management is that you’re across absolutely everything.”
Annabella Coldrick, CEO, MMF:
“The goal of this report is to better explain what a modern day music manager actually does and enhance understanding of how this has changed in the digital age. We will use the findings to better advocate for our members' interests and expand our activity on the critical areas identified such as access to finance, acquiring new skills and mental health, and to initiate discussions with our clients and partners on new business models in management."
Kwame Kwaten, MMF Vice Chair, and Ferocious Talent:
“This is an important report, and it raises some big questions. For all the opportunities and responsibilities opened up through digital innovation, it’s clear that the majority of managers are still paid on commission-based business models. I'm not convinced that's sustainable, and think we need a wider industry discussion around how managers are compensated in order to ensure artist and songwriter businesses can thrive in the future. Many of us have already started cutting deals that reflect our current environment."
The initiative has already supported 24 managers in 2019, resulting in these entrepreneurs increasing their client base of artists, songwriters and producers by more than 20%. The next wave of 2020 Accelerator participants will be announced soon.
November 1, 2019 4:00am ET by Pressparty