Manager Spotlight: Honey Keenan

04 July 2024

The manager spotlight offers a small insight into the heads of incredible managers.⁠ This week in the spotlight is Honey Keenan!

How long have you worked in Management?

3 Years

Who do you manage now?

Leif Coffield

Where did you find your first client and what inspired you to take them on?

I met Leif at a 23rd Precinct networking night in Glasgow in 2018. When I first met him, he was like a coiled spring, bursting with enthusiasm for his passions: making music and telling somewhat funny jokes.

In 2020, he asked me to help him with his social media and marketing for his first-ever release. Then, in 2021, I began fully managing him while completing my dissertation at university.

What really inspired me to take him on was our shared vision of what we want to achieve. We are both invested in each other’s development and want to see one another shine. We truly are each other’s “right-hand man/woman.” Plus, there’s the added bonus that he makes certified pop bangers.

What does a good/bad day at work look like for you?

A bad day is when you receive multiple rejections in one day, although I like to think that means that I am one step closer to the next ‘success’. 

A good day at work is a day that Leif is playing a show. Despite the nerves, and lots of baby oil (it has become a bit of a pre-show ritual), it always reminds me why I do what I do. I absolutely love the euphoric energy Leif brings to the stage. 

What has been the highlight of your management career to date?

It’s hard to pick a specific highlight, but getting connected with The Cat’s Mother network over the past 12 months has been pivotal in my development as a manager. It’s an amazing support network of women in the music industry who are dedicated to helping others, and I am endlessly grateful for the mentorship they have provided me.

More recently, getting Leif connected with AWAL and their incredibly supportive team has been fantastic. Additionally, securing five festival bookings for 2024 without a booking agent has been a major milestone—summer is looking fun!

What do you think are the big challenges for a manager in 2024?

In 2024, managers face a multitude of challenges that require adaptability and continuous learning. One of the primary issues is the rising costs associated with producing, promoting, and performing music. This financial pressure is particularly pronounced in the grassroots music scene, where budgets are often limited, and resources are stretched thin.

Additionally, the digital space is becoming increasingly crowded, making it difficult to stand out. As managers we need to constantly learn and diversify strategies to effectively utilise digital tools and platforms. This need for continuous adaptation can be daunting, especially when combined with the day-to-day demands of managing artists and projects.

Many of these challenges stem from knowledge gaps. Without up-to-date information and strategies, it’s easy to fall behind. Which is why I think having access to resources and having an approachable and supportive network is so crucial. 

Why would you recommend the MMF?

I would recommend the MMF because it has provided me with invaluable access to knowledge, helped me expand my network, and increased my visibility in the music industry in a short amount of time. I truly believe I couldn’t have achieved this without the resources and support provided by the MMF.

What music are you currently listening to?

Tyler ICU, Pa Salieu, Lola Young, Uncle Waffles, Zino, Tommy Richman and Chappell Roan

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