If you are a budding artist and setting out into the music industry, you are probably doing so because you are highly talented at creating music, but the business is entirely different matter. Understanding the business side of things can be absolutely daunting, phrases such as business managers, agents, personal managers, booking agents, tour managers and so forth normally cause confusion to a talented songwriter.

In this blog we help to demystify the music business industry, break down the terminology and help you understand the job roles of the main people involved. What new artists and bands do not understand is the framework that is at the core of today’s modern music industry. The artist needs to realize how all the gears work in relation to each other, who are the musical professionals and what they do, and at what time they are important to your career.

The Players

It is critical that any new artist knows the main players of the music industry and the framework that the said industry works around. Today more than ever an artist cannot survive in the industry if they have not assembled a dedicated team around them. An artist is good at one thing and that is creating music, and there is only so much they can do independently. All the Lady Gagas and the Madonnas of this world have a manager, a dedicated  A&R for a label, a booking agent, a person to look after PR, tour manager, lawyer and so on.

The Core

The real core players to an artist are the manager, music publisher and the agent. As soon as an artist feels the need representation, these are the people that they require. The manager comes first and should be a professional, not a mate or your dad. After that one is settled, publishers enter the scene when the artist is releasing music. Once a publisher is involved, normally a label starts to show interest. Today, with the internet, there is a large increase in independent labels who are rapidly sweeping up all the new blood. Especially true of EDM and the electronic music scene; sometimes these new independent labels get involved before a manager.

Different members of the core have different jobs; for instance, manager’s main job is to protect the artists and their interests from the outside world as well as take care of all the business issues that are connected to the artist, also to build the team of the rest of the core members. The agent, meanwhile, is responsible for soliciting bookings, arranging tours and creating events; in other words, he is responsible for getting the business in. The last of the core members to get involved is the publisher. This is the time when the artist has a we’ve made it moment. It is a positive sign that the project has finally matured beyond YouTube clips and Facebook posts. The publisher will ensure that you are meeting the right collaborators to take your project to the next level. All great artists who have made it to the top have had a strong core team around them.

In part two we continue by looking at the importance a good manager is to any artist, and their job roles.