How Many Managers Does It Take to Save an Industry?

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paper bag, wet.  (photo by evan p. cordes (cc by 2.0))


If the major labels have cratered, who gets to fill the void?

Perhaps artist managers, a group that sometimes finds itself babysitting artists, and other times investing in multi-billion startups (music or otherwise).  Enter the freshly-steroided Maverick, a name that old-timers will remember as the label originally co-founded by Madonna and helmed by Guy Oseary.

Now, Maverick will bulk into a consortium of various management groups from various genres, with Live Nation Entertainment joining the fun.

So far, these guys suck at hype: according to a strangely-timed Friday evening announcement in Billboard that hasn’t quite rippled, the other players in the gang include:

  • Laffitte Management’s Ron Laffitte
  • I Am Other’s Caron Veazey
  • Blueprint Group’s Gee Roberson and Cortez Bryant
  • Reign Deer’s Larry Rudolph and Adam Leber
  • Quest Management’s Scott Rodger
  • Spalding Entertainment’s Clarence Spalding

Live Nation, painfully played by the shrewd super-manager Irving Azoff in a deal gone sour, is aiming to re-enter the management arena as part of the consortium.  That makes sense, as Live Nation itself is benefiting enormously from being able to actually charge for music (unlike labels).  But insiders point to a show business that puts big branding deals way ahead of actual ticket sales (just ask Live Nation exec and former co-conspirator Joe Fleischer).

And where’s Troy Carter?  The manager famous for guiding Lady Gaga in her glory days is now apparently minting plenty as an investor, and might be a nice addition to the cast.  Meanwhile, Oseary is no slouch in the investment world either, with music and non-music companies under his ‘A-Trak’ moniker spanning Airbnb, Uber, Spotify, Soundcloud, and INDMusic (they do YouTube stuff, look them up).

(updated, Sunday: a commenter asked about Scooter Braun’s involvement, if any…)

And what would you say this consortium will DO around here, anyway?

Let’s see…

14 Responses

  1. Anonymous



    thanks for that!


    • RemiSwierczek


      Brilliant question!

      The answer:

      At this stage only Larry Page awaken by greed and MOONSHOT business model of Discovery Moment Monetization.

      Other option Dan Loeb for Sony, Vincent Bollore for Viviendi/UMG and Len Blavatnik for Warner with help of mega stars and Obama taking music ID PIMPS and Larry Page with his Google the business REHAB!

  2. Sallie Jessie Raphael

    Funny that Scooter Braun is no where to be found as well. Wasn’t he trying to build a similar “mega-Management” group with some of the same people?

    • Anonymous

      tough when you advocate stealing others property before they even finish or release it…

      • Anonymous

        its nice to yall are in the same bed… good information to have finally rused out of yall… thanks!


  3. GGG

    What will this consortium do? Do you know what managers do? Because they’ll probably do all that, while attempting to create another Red Light.

  4. FarePlay

    Oh, sorry. I thought you said Mergers.

    Never mind…………..

  5. Smells like teen desperation

    The only way this creates any efficiencies for live nation is by double dipping on artists. Promoter fees and management fees. In some ways I like this. It really makes Luve Nation seem more evil while in reality being an incompetent ovetleveraged overstaffed over-salaried bag of shit. Funny stuff.

  6. Noel

    Not sure what they will achieve, but it won’t

    1) Help out starving artists.
    2) Fix an industry in exponential descent.

  7. Irving Mindreader

    “How Many Managers Does It Take to Save an Industry?”

    More than this many. A casual glance at history will tell you, market-wide benefits rarely follow leaders who foremost seek to enrich themselves financially.

    TL;DR — Greed is exclusive. Our pain and needs are inclusive.

    If this or any other consortium swore to recycle profits back into r&d, by any percentage, for any considerable length of time, their efforts would then be newsworthy. This, I’m afraid, is a group puff piece signifying little.

    These are all capable business people, sure. But the problem isn’t how do the rich get richer — it’s how do we scalably recalibrate the consumers’ perceived value of music.

    That is not an incremental problem.

    Until the middle of the transactional cost/benefit bell curve moves back over a whole number, all talk of brands and sponsorships and new business models is much ado about rearranging deck chairs. Nothing more.

  8. Phillip Michael Munsey II

    Let’s be honest, these guys are really just trying to fight the little guys(indie/unsigned). Old, outdated and unaware that their initial fight against the mp3(sueing and napster) lost them their control. They should of been on top of their shit way back then instead of having their heads stuck up their asses, now they are just sticking their heads up one another’s asses!

  9. Chris Daniels

    As somebody who teaches this and researches managers – the answer is more complicated. Because of the lack of revenue from sale of recordings – managers (like everybody else) are looking to touring, publishing and sponsorships to keep their management company in business. One of the heads of 7S/Red Light said “…it’s a volume business now…. the real work is being done by the assistants and a typical manager needs between 5 and 7 touring clients to make a living on their commissions – especially if they are in a large agency… the old hands-on personal artist management model is pretty much gone except in small or individual houses…the assistants are the ones who are working directly with the artists on everything from their social media to their tour coordination and even long-term planning. Look at the roster of the top five agencies and you will see a list of between 35 and 100 clients depending on the size of the company.” That is the reality for these kinds of firms. It will be interesting to see if this new venture can keep a personal touch or must rely on the volume business model to survive.