Alright. So. The one question I get asked the most, with various words and sequences: “Do you think I’m ready for a manager”? or “Do you think I need a manager”?
Yummmmmmm-mmmy! Between you and me, this has to be one of my favorite topics to dive into because it can go as deep as we can swim. My initial response is just about always the same and seems to garner a confused reaction. But that’s the point. It usually gets the brain moving the way I need it to in order to have an open conversation about it.
My answer is simply “I don’t know”. I mean, I do but I don’t. Straight face and Kanye shrug.
I’ve had artists look at me crazy, speechless. I’ve had artists walk away lightweight pissed. For them what Yeezy taught me was appropriate. The good ones tho. They meet me in that space and challenge me by challenging themselves. My reply is 100% intended to make the question become rhetorical- make them figure it out and answer themselves. Because the simple, hard truth is that NO ONE can answer that for you as an artist.
One thing is for certain, if you can’t come up with multiple reasons why you would benefit from my or any manager’s services within a handful of seconds, maybe even a minute or two, then I’m sorry but our conversation on said topic is over. Like, immediately. I may even hit you with the ItWasGreatTalkingToYouIGottaRunOverThere. Don’t be offended. It just means I respect us enough to not waste each others time. Clearly you’re not ready. AND THAT’S OK! Trust your process. Take some more time to gather yourself then ask yourself again before you ask me again.
The fact is I think every artist who is serious about entertaining the majors should have a manager. Shit, several managers if needed, but that ONE is necessary. It’s damn near impossible to hit all the lanes an artist needs to without a driver to navigate the back and forth. Like our guy-guy Robert Greene said in The 48 Laws of Power, “Never imagine that skills and talent are all that matter”. Mr. Greene droppin' those gems on that ass.
Without getting too deep, weigh your needs. If you’re ready to literally take your craft to the next level with guidance and another voice to answer to- because as your manager it is our responsibility to find a reason and a way to make shit make sense, then go for it.
BUT REMEMBER, not all managers are the same. Hell, everyone who claims to be a manager probably isn’t. The title is thrown so loosely that real managers like myself don’t throw it unless it’s being caught. DO YOUR RESEARCH. ASK QUESTIONS. Check their track record: Who have they worked with? What have they worked on? Will they post up in that studio with you? Can they cut a check when shit needs to get done? Do they have national contacts across the board to help you?
If you can answer yes to most or all of those you guys are on the right track together. If they aren’t completely qualified but they have your back and are willing to learn and grow with you still consider them… we all should start from humble beginnings.
Final piece of advise: DON’T SEEK UNTIL YOU’RE READY TO FIND. There is nothing worse than wasting someone’s time, especially someone who specializes in making time make sense. BE READY.
Feel free to contact me directly if additional consulting is needed.