How to Manage a Recording Artist

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The music industry is very fascinating to a lot of people. When you watch music videos and see recording artists perform, everything looks glamorous and exciting, but there is a lot of work involved in getting an artist to that point. There are a lot of people who work mostly behind the scenes to keep the music industry running.

  • Create your company. Before you start representing people, take care of the administrative part first. If you know you want to manage a recording artist, you must make sure you have the necessary contracts and other paperwork in place before you start work. Pick a name and make it official. Determine the type of business entity you want. Research the differences between an INC, LLC, LLP, Sole Proprietorship and any other business entities to determine which one you want to have.

  • Contact your state's secretary of state office to determine how to set it up. Sometimes you can do this online but it may be a good idea to take the time to go down to the office to ensure that you can talk to a person and get your questions answered.

  • Contact the IRS and get your tax ID number. You will need this number to operate as your business. Visit their website (see Resources, below). Feel free to surf the site for additional information because the IRS is extremely helpful in giving you basic information about creating and operating your business.

  • Sign your artist. Create a contractual relationship between you and the artist. If this is a friend, you may want to skip the formality because you trust the person, but that is ill advised. You may need to show proof of this contractual relationship later down the line so go ahead and take care of it now. If you don't already have an artist in mind, you should skip to Step 5.

  • Find an artist that you'd like to manage. Most cities have an underground independent music scene. Keep your eyes open for an unsigned artist showcases and make sure you are in attendance. Search social networking websites like Myspace and Facebook for artists who are in your area. Before you approach an artist, make sure you have things in order. You will need business cards and some kind of online presence. You will need to pitch this artist on why you should manage them. Put yourself in that person's shoes and be prepared to answer many questions and address all concerns.

  • Be prepared to deliver what you promise. An artist's manager often takes on many different roles depending on where the artist is in his/her career. Whatever you discussed with the artist and outlined in the contract, must be upheld. If necessary, refer to the contract occasionally to ensure that you're staying on track. Should new situations arise, you may need to create an addendum to the contract. Just make sure you get everything signed.

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