Artist Development vs. Management

Every career starts off with getting your feet wet, and having the experience helps especially when diving into the music industry. At EAR, we specialize in two areas; Artist Development and Artist Management, but which one is right for you? It all depends on your experience level, and how you run your music business.



If you are playing shows consistently, creating and marking your music, management may be your best bet. Since you already have the building blocks to push your business forward, consider expanding your team with a manager or label. Managers should unconditionally love your music the same way you do, and if both parties have the same passion, marketing and decision making will be easy. Additionally there are many types of managers out there. Do the research on what kind of managers there are, and what best suits you. A touring group for example, may want to hire a general manager, and a touring manager. Each position would handle different aspects of the group and its goals. Labels on the other hand, offer much more than just management (and usually provide management in the contract), giving the artist label support in the areas of production, marketing, distribution, and sales. Each management group or record label has its own process, so make sure you know what you’re getting before you sign. It’s always important to own your masters even if things do work out.


If you aren’t at this point where your music is turning a profit, it may pay off to go into Artist Development. Not only are you working with a manager every step of the way, you also have the opportunity to create with producers that can help you in writing and recording your music. Additionally, during the development process you learn industry practices and songwriter ethics that fastrack your way to stardom. Even playing shows at a local level can be profitable, however, it’s how you market your act that determines how successful it will be. The drawback with development is the cost. Truthfully, it may be either more or less expensive depending on what company you choose to go with, however, compared to college education this can dramatically assist in forming a team, making the right decisions, and experience. For example, say you graduate from a college with a B.A. in performing arts. You now have a degree, the knowledge to run your own business, but where do you start? Typically in development, some things you learn include performance, songwriting, marketing, and even brand awareness.


Depending on where you are in your music career, think about where you want to go and plan how to do it. Hiring a manager can be super effective in opening doors for your act, but are you ready to start performing at shows? Could you sound better on stage or in the studio? Are you making money on your music? There are many things to consider, and if you don’t know as us! We’d love to answer your questions.