This week I’m talking with my friend Philip Peters who is part of the True Artist Management team for artists TobyMac, Mandisa and DC Talk. We discuss how to get into artist management, the day to day tasks of that position and how important it is to know all of parts of the music industry when trying to get a job in artist management.
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*I went to Anderson University in Indiana and got a lot exposure going to concerts at the school.
*DC Talk was my favorite band and saw them several times.
*The Gaither Vocal Band, Sandi Patty, Steven Curtis Chapman and Sidewalk Prophets all came out of Anderson University.
*I was in the music business program at Anderson University as a freshman but it was very music heavy and that was not what I wanted to focus one so I moved to a marketing program.
*The marketing degree has shaped what I do heavily now because we do digital marketing and always having to post photos and videos on Facebook and Google ads everyday and be creative which is incorporated with the touring elements I work with.
*I did get a music business minor which helped me in music business law, etc.
*I learned there is more to music than just the band on stage.
*I started working as the student manager at the school auditorium. I’m good with organizing people, etc. so I would interact with artist managers and road managers.
*In that position I would get the artist/band rider and make sure to fill the dressing room with what they needed, make sure there were people to help set up the stage or drive the band and crew around.
*That got me thinking I could do that on the road for artists making sure it was getting done as a road manager.
*I was getting the degree and learning in the classroom, but also practical experience when artists would come to the school.
*I was doing everything I could to load gear, run the spotlight, learn all facets of the industry.
*My first job out of college was here at True Artist Management.
* “Settling Shows” – knowing how much money came in for the shows from selling tickets, making sure everyone gets paid correctly.
*The promoter and road manager and the venue manager typically take care of that so someone from each party is involved.
*Working at True Artist Management I work with DC Talk, Toby Mac and Mandisa.
*How persistent do you have to be when trying to get a job in artist management? You have to know your stuff. Know the music industry, listen to a podcast, read the book, know what you’re talking about.
*Don’t just come in and say “I’ve always wanted to work with so and so artist.”
*Talk about always wanting to tour, be a part of album making, or serve the artist well.
*Artist management can be one of the coolest jobs ever and it can also be a difficult job that no one is there to do so I have to do it.
*Management is everything from an airport run to label meetings, but know that stuff and be educated in that world.
*I came in my first day on the job knowing what artists were with which agencies and labels so that so when someone says they need to talk to so and so, I know who that is.
*Be very prepared so you don’t have to be taught everything.
*Some of the hardest parts of being an artist manager is knowing the artist works nights and weekends on tour, so you’re working office hours during the day, but if a flight goes wrong or the is a problem at a show you may be working the night as well.
*You also have to be spinning lots of plates and when they are all spinning, no one notices. But if one falls everyone notices.
*You can kind of live in the area that no one is ever happy.
*The best part of being an artist manager is seeing tours come together and be successful.
*What are some practical steps for someone wanting to get into artist management?
*Make sure you know what you are good at.
*If the artist is the center, the manager is the nucleus around that and the spokes of digital team, merch, publishing, label, etc.
*The manager is trusted by the artist to make decisions for them, the right hand man.
*Make sure you are good at multi-tasking and don’t get overwhelmed easily.
*Don’t be easily stressed because you are going to live at a level of stress because you’re going to be working on the future while executing things in the present.
*I hear 2 things from people for why they want a manager: 1.) The workload is too much and 2.) I (the artist) don’t like to be the bad guy.
*There are many ways to get into artist management: working at a venue, promoting a show, etc.
*What does it take for an artist to approach a manager and ask them to represent them?
*Usually they are already signed to a label when they come to a manager.
*If you are playing x amount of shows a year and making x amount of money and you have a strong following on your own need help with marketing or crafting some songs, etc. then that might be different.
*For us, most artists sign to label then the label will connect them to management and booking agents.
Philip Peters works for True Artist Management where he is a Management Associate for Christian music artists DC Talk, TobyMac, and Mandisa. Additionally, Peters served as the youth pastor at his church in Franklin, TN. from 2008-2014 and is also the founder of Restore Haiti, a service organization serving Jacmel, Haiti.
Philip founded Restore Haiti in 2005 which supports over 60 schools with supplies and tuition as well as drilling wells for clean water in communities. He attends the Gate Community Church in Franklin, TN. and is a member of the Alumni Council at Anderson University in Indiana.
Philip and his wife Laura Beth live in Franklin, TN and have one son, Jacob, who is 2 years old.