On this month’s Tips & Advice we spoke to ROM members Bex and Keith who run our management department and have shared pointers to what managers look for in an artist.

Depending on where you are on your ladder of success, finding a manager can be exactly what your career/music needs to take the next step forward.

Keith from management explains: “We have a diverse roster touching on different genres, ages and needs of artists but there are common things we look for no matter what the act is…..talent is a given by the way….we assume you have good songs and can perform to a good level”

So here are a couple of things managers want to see in you:

Uniqueness – There is a lot of music out there competing for ears. Be prepared to try and develop your own craft behind closed doors and develop your own language. It is tricky to stand out from the crowd, but putting the hours in developing your style of writing, playing, sonic base, vocal delivery etc will be of massive benefit to you. We want to hear people that are doing something that is trying to be unique in its field. Over recent years it is clear fans get attracted to ‘new’ sounding artists. Having influences are impossible to avoid, the skill lies in truly talented artists finding their own lane on the motorway.

Determination – This is fundamental for any artist. This is not an easy business. A bloody mindedness and focus is required. The path is not clear or simple. Hurdles will appear. Some will be self imposed and others will be put in the way by others. You have to be prepared to handle rejection – if not, this is not the game for you. The art of compromise is something to build into your body armour for any modern artist. When commerce collides with art it can lead to conflict. Determined mental attitude will hold you in good stead to handle most situations along the way.

Self Sufficiency – The assumption out there that being managed means you suddenly have a fully functioning back end facility doing everything on the artists behalf does not always ring true. Artists were doing something right before a manager got involved….so the trick lies in the act carrying on that DIY attitude they have built….. Surround yourself as best you can with creatives. Try and source people yourself who can help you form a live band, make a video, record yourself well, generate artwork, drive you around etc etc. Record companies tend to come on board later these days once you have generated some interest in the real world via online coverage, radio plays and playlists inclusions. These are things artists can do themselves – so do them or at least try to !!! Management can then enter to refine things and amplify the good bits. Never lose the ‘me against the world’ spirit. Agility is required by all artists these days. The more you have done yourself, the more compelling an artist you come across as.

Being A Nice Person – The artist-management relationship is the tightest relationship any artist will have, so it is useful that you are a nice person. It is very difficult for anyone to deal with someone who has unreasonable expectations. Management is there to advice artists and they have to be receptive to taking on board their analysis and expertise regarding specific scenarios. We are the people who take the phone call at 11pm from an artist having doubts and fears about what may lie ahead and have to advice and reassure them accordingly….it helps if that is with an artist you trust on a human level, that you can have a straight conversation with. The manager is the only person that will say ‘no’ to the artist….friends and family will tell you that you are brilliant and such and such a song is a definite ‘single’….we are the messengers of reality as we see it. Music is a game of opinions and the relationship between artist and manager is built with trust at its core….therefore trust their opinion if even it is a ‘no’. So , it helps if you get along as people and respect each other and can have conversations away from the music.

We hope you’ve found these tips useful!

Team ROM x