Manager Spotlight offers a small insight into the heads of incredible managers. This week in the spotlight is James Foster.
How long have you worked in Management?
This year has will be my 10 year anniversary working as an artist manager.
Who do you manage now?
Currently I manage Koven and I’ve got my eye on a number of up-and-coming acts.
Where did you find your first client and what inspired you to take them on?
Koven were my first client! I was running a record label at University called 2 Much Bass Records around the big Dubstep surge in 2009-2012. Max from Koven sent me a demo called “Let It All Out” – I thought this track was too good for my Label and I pitched the idea of management to him if I managed to get it signed to a bigger/better label. We successfully placed the track onto a Dubstep compilation with Ministry Of Sound called ‘Dirty Bass’. We’ve been working ever since basically 24/7.
What’s a good/bad day at work look like for you?
A good day would be having a solid hour or two of exercise in the morning followed by a rewarding day i.e seeing the outcome/results of project we put into motion some weeks or months prior. There’s nothing more rewarding that spending months working on a project or activation and then seeing it through with everyone being happy with the results and being proud of their work. A bad day would be not meeting the expectations I set myself for a task/project/activity.
What has been the highlight of your management career to date?
Releasing Koven’s debut album ‘Butterfly Effect’ last year on March 13th 2020 without a doubt. Granted the year didn’t go the way we planned, with touring plans cancelled etc. However, I’m still incredibly proud of what we managed to achieve as everyone involved worked so hard and it was really successful.
What do you think are the big challenges for a manager in 2021?
In my opinion it’s going to be the biggest challenge any manager faces on a daily basis and that’s managing expectations with internal an external clients (artists / labels / publishers / promoters / merch managers / etc) – everyone has a part to play. We (the music industry) have been dealt a pretty crappy hand this past year and we continue to face new challenges every day. From; revenue streams to potential implications of touring internationally. I strongly believe that the majority of decisions made this year weather they are creative or business related need to have realistic targets set.
What music are you currently listening to?
Although I work in Electronic on a daily basis my roots are in Rock and Metal, thats how I managed to transit into Dubstep in the early days of my career. I’ve been abolutely loving my discover weekly on Spotify and have been listening to a lot of; Sleep Token, Architects & If These Trees Could Talk.