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By Professor Pooch
© 2016 David J. Spangenberg
First, you must choose the correct Person or People to manage your musical career. This is probably the most important decision in your professional life. You are giving away control over your career and essentially your life, for an extended period of time.
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There are two important considerations that will not appear in any contract you sign.
1. “Can I trust this Person?”
Before you decide on anyone, understand that your personal Manager will most probably have some kind of “Power of Attorney” as part of your contractual agreement. This means they can sign your name to any agreement or other contract in your behalf, and you will be bound by it!
There must be a limit put on this clause, such as they can only sign you up for one or two day gigs.
They will also be the ones handling the money received in exchange for your work, at least in the beginning. You must have complete trust in them, in order to agree to these things.
2. “Can this Person really advance my career?”
“Good intentions” do not make a great Manager. Your potential Manager may have the best, most sincere intent in the world, and want more than anything to help make you an outstanding success. To do this they must have knowledge of the Industry, contacts within it, and the prestige, power, and influence to be able to use them.
By the way, especially in the Music Business, it’s not only “Who you know…”, but more importantly, “Who knows You!”
Do not just go with your feelings about this Person alone. Also:
1. Check them out within the Industry.
2. Check them out on the Internet
3. Have them give references and check them.
4. Talk to other Artists they manage.
5. Talk to Artists they once managed but don’t now. Find out the reasons the Artist(s) left.
Note: Evaluate these reasons carefully. The Manager may not have been at fault! Plenty of Artists, by doing what they shouldn’t do, and/or not doing what they should do, etc., may actually be the ones at fault.
You may find you like this potential Manager, although there are some things against him/her. Weigh these things carefully before you make a decision. Remember that you may be “together” for a long time!
You should feel that your potential Manager has the desire and is ready to start advancing your career. They should give you a general idea of what they will do, on some kind of schedule, and how long it will take to get started.
If they seem too “laid back” and easy-going, they might not be the one for you. On the other hand, they may be the type who does everything easily and well without too much fuss or exertion because they know what to do and how to do it. Check them out!
Finally, remember that a contract is only as good as the people who sign it. Many persuasive people “talk” a good job, but when they have to, can’t or don’t perform.
Be sure this applies neither to your potential Manager nor yourself, because it takes both of you to make it work. What a great personal Manager can accomplish may often seem miraculous, but it’s not; because they know what to do and how to do it and with whom, and they’re working with what they have: Hopefully a creative and marketable Artist – You!
The contents of this Blog were excerpted from my book “The Music Biz”, available on my Site.
Remember if you ever have any questions about the Creative, Business or Legal ends of the Music Business, or need my help in any way, please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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