Kelly Kapp - VP of Touring and Executive VP of House of Blues Entertainment Talent at Live Nation - 17 Years of Touring and Artist Development

Kelly Kapp with Adora DORAble Duchess of Fluffington

Kelly Kapp with Adora DORAble Duchess of Fluffington

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher |

Kelly Kapp is the VP of Touring and Executive VP of House of Blues Entertainment Talent at Live Nation. She is the first executive working in a dual role with both the Clubs & Theaters division and U.S. Concerts division, reporting to both Bob Roux and Ron Bension.  Kapp has been with Live Nation for 17 years, where she started as a Project Manager for North American Concerts. One of her first major tours was Ozzfest, where she got to work with the team of former Live Nation touring VP, Jane Holeman, President at AGI and Agent, Marsha Vlasic, and Sharon Osbourne. In 2006, when Live Nation acquired House of Blues, Kelly Kapp became the first tour buyer working with Kevin Morrow. In this new dual role she books over 800 shows per year, and will now be able to develop artists from clubs and theaters to the next level of arenas and venues over 2,000 capacity. 

Some of the tours Kelly Kapp has worked with include Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage, Breaking Benjamin, Bring Me the Horizon, Dita Von Teese, Hanson, Frank Turner, Anberlin, Korn, Chevelle, Ghost, the Used, Hollywood Undead, All Time Low, Dashboard Confessional, Bullet For My Valentine, Sum 41, In This Moment, Black Label Society, Elle King, HIM, Bad Religion, Stone Sour, Circa Survive, Between the Buried And Me, Hobo Johnson, August  Burns Red, Mayday Parade, NOFX, Parkway Drive, Volbeat, Asking Alexandria, the Maine, Meshuggah, Motionless In White, As I Lay Dying, Black Veil Brides, Limp Bizkit, Trivium, 3OH!3, Nothing More, Amon Amarth, Taking Back Sunday, Against Me!, Issues, Seether, Periphery, Papa Roach, Pierce the Veil, Testament, Marianas Trench, One Ok Rock, Falling In Reverse, Sleeping With Sirens, Megadeth, I Prevail, Simple Plan, Beartooth, Clutch, and Dethklok, and many more. (List from Celebrity Access Interview)

I had the honor of working with Kelly Kapp for a short time when I was at House of Blues New Orleans. Our office booked quite a few of her tours at both our House of Blues Music Hall (850 capacity) and the venue I was responsible for, The Parish (370 capacity). It’s not everyday when you have people that believe in you and are supportive of you. It’s been very humbling and inspiring in the last couple of months to find so many supporters in one place. That’s a story for another time. I’m excited to share this conversation with all the listeners. This conversation is such a gift, and Kapp really dove in deep sharing lessons and wisdom from her time so far in the music industry. Thank you, Kelly Kapp!! 

Adopt a pet, learn more about the Bruce Kapp Animal Fund

Adopt a pet, learn more about the Bruce Kapp Animal Fund

Quotes from Kelly Kapp
“Everyone that’s in this business, is very lucky to be in this business.”
“It is really important to make connections, and stay in touch with people.” 
“Be so good at your job that nobody ever thinks about your gender.” 
“Letting people that are flying off the handle know that they’re being heard, is super important and it deescalates the situation.” 
“If you put it down in black and white, and send it over email, it’s going to live in infamy. And by the way, that email can go anywhere.” 
“If you have a relationship, nurture that relationship.” 
“There are not many industries where you are that entrenched with people outside of your company that you do work with.”
“The operations part of what we do is such an unsung part of our business.” 
“Talk to people that have been successful at it, but also talk to people that had to close their doors.” 
“We have production managers who are then asked to do math after a 16 hour day.” 
“Get to a place where you are an expert at deal types.” 
“A team behind a new artist is way easier to get going than just a lone wolf.”
“You don’t want to add people to your team just to add people to your team.” 
“The most successful artists out there have surrounded themselves with people that care as much about their career as they do.”  
“You are not going to be a successful artist if you cannot perform live.” 
“If it’s your goal, you need to be clear cut with your goal and not get side tracked.” 
“Have respect for yourself.” 

Kelly Kapp, Live Nation.jpg

Highlights from this Episode
[8:56] New roles as Vice President of Touring and Executive Vice President of House of Blues Entertainment Talent
[12:40] Growing up in the Music Business 
[14:58] Starting in the business as a Project Manager 
[19:08] Turning point of falling in love with the business 
[21:47] Working with old mentors 
[23:37] Building good relationships 
[28:35] The women of Ozzfest 
[32:25] Dealing with bad tempers 
[38:12] Staying organized with 850 shows per year 
[41:56] Major Markets, Secondary Markets, and Tertiary Markets 
[44:02] Working for House of Blues with Kevin Marrow 
[48:26] Lessons learned from her father, Bruce Kapp 
[53:01] Advice for someone wanting to open a venue 
[56:35] Courses college students should take to prepare for the music business 
[1:00:15] How do tour deals come together 
[1:07:10] What role does touring play into Artist Development? 
[1:09:30] Does an artist still need a label if they have a good manager, agent, and are able to do a Live Nation tour? 
[1:13:15] What every artist needs to be successful 
[1:14:50] Becoming a successful Talent Buyer 
[1:19:30] Getting to know Kelly Kapp 

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Nick Storch, Agent at AGI
Bruce Kapp, VP of Talent at Live Nation
Jane Holman
As I Lay Dying
Steve Martin, Agent at APA
Bob Roux, Live Nation President of US Concerts 
Marsha Vlasic, President and Agent at AGI
Sharon Osbourne 
10% Happier App
Katie Davie, Project Coordinator at Live Nation
Falling in Reverse
Ron Bension, President of House of Blues Entertainment
Ben Weeden, COO of House of Blues Entertainment
Kevin Morrow, CEO at Steel Wool / former President at Live Nation New York 
Tim Borror, Agent at Sound Talent Group
Eric Tobin, EVP A&R at Hopeless Records
Frank Turner
Cypress Hill 
Amon Amarth
Dita Von Teese
Chris Carrabba 
Promoter 101 [Podcast]
Agent vs Promoter [Instagram] 
Celebrity Access 
Dave Shapiro, Founder of Sound Talent Group
Ryan Harlacher, Agent at CAA
Jared Martin, Agent at CAA
Eric Powell, Agent at Sound Talent Group 
Ice Nine Kills 

Kelly Kapp’s Definition of Making It:
“Everyday I still get up and strive to be better than I was the day before. There are still artists that I wanted to work with that I haven’t worked with.” 

Get in touch with Kelly Kapp 

Related Articles & Episodes: 
Ben Weeden, COO of House of Blues Entertainment at Live Nation
Michael Yerke, President of House of Blues and Live Nation Talent
Jim Mallonee, Senior VP of Southeast Booking for Live Nation and HOBE
Promoter Deals and Settlements
Inside the Life of a Talent Buyer

Strategies to Playing Live & Building Your Email List featuring Lessons from Ari Herstand, Bree Noble, Cheryl B. Engelhardt, and Shannon Curtis

Ep085 Cover.jpg

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher |

The questions I receive the most are related to touring and building a fanbase. Regardless of where you are in your career, whether you’re just starting out or have been grinding for a long time but you’re just not where you want to be in your career, this episode is ideal for you. In this episode, I expand on and string together some clips from past guests to help you build your most ideal strategy for playing live and building your email list. These strategies are beneficial for all genres. In this episode, we discuss utilizing house shows as a strategy to building your audience. House Concerts are not just for singer-songwriters and folk artists. There are and have been artists from all genres performing in people’s houses. From Hip-Hop artists performing at and organizing house parties, to metal bands playing in people's garages. This episode features valuable lessons from Ari Herstand, Bree Noble, Cheryl B. Engelhardt, and Shannon Curtis.

Guests Featured in this episode
Ari Herstand from Episode #016
Bree Noble from Episode #082
Cheryl B. Engelhardt from Episode #083
Shannon Curtis from Episode #038

Quotes from this episode
“When there is excitement, people want to come and be part of the show.”
“Nobody ever got signed just because they played the cool venue in town.”
“Facebook people doesn’t want people leaving Facebook, on email you can send them
wherever you want.”
“When you have email subscribers, send them an email that you would send to a friend.”
“Send an email that people would want to open and look forward to reading.”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Steve Aoki
Email Marketing Stats from Mailchimp
Pre-Writing Your Automated Emails
Rick Barker
Anthony Snape
[BOOK] How to Make It in the New Music Business by Ari Herstand
[BOOK] All You Need to Know About the Music Business by Donald Passman
[BOOK] No Booker, No Bouncer, No Bartender by Shannon Curtis

Keep in touch:

Host: Chris Goyzueta (Chris G.)
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp

S’von - A Musician's Journey Through the Music Industry Performing with Legends on the World's Biggest Stages

Ep.079 Cover S'von.jpg

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher |

S’von is currently the keyboard player for the legendary Smokey Robinson. Prior to that his journey began playing in clubs and small tours, until his journey one lead him to the inaugural American Idol Tour, where he met Kelly Clarkson. Since that tour, S’von has toured with many legends of the business such as Kelly Clarkson, Rihanna, and Smokey Robinson. He has performed on some of the biggest TV Shows in the United States such as Saturday Night Live, The Today Show, Good Morning America, Ellen Degeneres, Jay Leno, and many more. In this episode, S’von shares his journey along with many lessons for musicians such as what gigs to take, how to not get taken advantage of, tour etiquette, and much more.

To learn more about S’von, visit

Highlights From The Episode:
[3:10] Inspiration to speak with students
[5:19] Day to day schedule on Tour
[6:40] Early musical inspirations
[8:00] Local Community & Growing Up
[8:29] Practicing
[10:56] Current Listenings
[11:47] What it takes to learn keys
[13:37] Favorite Gear
[15:40] Doing music full-time
[20:20] Before first big tour
[21:33] Choosing Gigs
[26:08] Advice on What to Ask For (Money-wise) 
[30:41] Relationship Building/ Being A Good Hang
[35:54] Lessons/Advice
[39:26] Storytime
[50:58] Frist Concert Experience
[51:39] Favorite Venue
[52:10] Interests
[52:51] Cryptocurrency
[53:39] Spotify IPO
[56:34] Guilty Pleasures
[58:28] Hollywood Vampires 

Quotes from S'von:
“I love interactions.”
“I would be gone for 6/7 weeks at a time, every time is different, it depends on how you manage it (tour).”
“To be honest, I was inspired by local musicians, I was inspired by local players, local clubs, churches.”
“When I went to college, the music was more-so about the people I went to school with."
“I practice less now, because I don’t want to loose the love of it. I felt like if I did it all the time, it would become more like a job and more mundane. I have to step away and not touch the keyboard for a bit.”
“If I keep trying to be a virtuoso, then my way of communication would be so complex in order to keep me interested, that the average person might not relate. I keep it less to keep the love there.”
“I’ll listen to other things, I didn’t grow up listening to a lot of keyboard players, I listened to a lot of other musicians."
“I try to create my own colors I don’t try to copy musicians work word for word, note for note.”
“On the keys, you have to spend time on it, it doesn’t have to be super complex. Start off with the basics, learn your scales, chords in every keys, 1,3,4,5 in every key. Play things in every key.”
“When you start to become comfortable with the instrument, and you are fluid with it, anything is possible."
“Take 30 days to commit to it, it will do wonders for you.”
“Once you learn how the instrument speaks, then you can play anything. I can play anything.”
“Literally I had a cell phone and a credit card. That was it. I had absolutely nothing, but I was really determined to get in.”
“I was really just looking for any opportunity. I was just lucky that my opportunities were at a bigger scale.”
“Say yes to mostly everything.”
“New people are trying to overvalue themselves. They X themselves out of a lot of opportunities.” 
“I’ll take whatever makes sense in the beginning. You have to pay your dues. Thing don’t just come in a straight line like that.”
“Once you get in the game, you figure out OK what’s worth my time, and what’s not worth my time.”
“If you have no experience, take the gig offered. If you feel like you are being exploited, then leave.”
“You learn from your experiences.”
“Ask your friends and contacts in the industry about what to ask for for money.”
“That’s what counts at the end of the day in the music business. You can be as talented and crafty as you want, but it matters how you handle your business. And people see that.”
“People choose you because they like to hang around you.”
“If you’re not a person people don’t like to hang around, that’s how it’s going to be in the business too”
“If a production has a million dollar budget, they don’t want to deal with a keyboard player with an attitude.”
“Work on your personality, play friendly with others, and you will be good."
“I treat a regular gig like it’s a big gig.”
“Just keep doing it, if you keep doing it, and you stay consistent, you will make it.”
“Patience is key. I was broke on Monday, and then I’m rich on Friday. It’s all the stuff that happens in between. If you don’t, you will burn out, and you will compare yourself to everyone else. What you see is not what you get.”
“Sometimes you think that you are ready, and you’re not. If you’re not ready, you’ll lose it quick.”
“You have to learn other rigs really fast sometimes.”
“I’m really into investing, stock trades and commodities, to leverage myself to not have to take certain gigs when I don’t want to.”
“Do your homework.”
“If your interpretation is off, you will make bad and emotional decisions.”
“I try to stay as healthy as possible, but catering will get you, man. You can’t smell celery!"

S'von's Definition of Making It:
"When you feel you happiest and your at peace." 

Get in touch with S'von:
IG: @svon1
witter: @svon1

Keep in touch:

Host: Chris Goyzueta (Chris G.)
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp

Touring with a Plan and Strategy - Where to Play, When to Play, and How to Sell Tickets

Ep.065 Cover Touring Strategy.jpg

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Spotify | Stitcher |

This episode is all about Touring Strategy! How often to play, which cities or markets to play, what types of venues to play, what are promoters, talent buyers, and venue owners looking for, and how do you get a booking agent. This is my first solo, lecture style episode. One of my student's favorite classes is when I cover tour strategy, and it’s a lecture they always ask me to record. Now it’s available not just for my students in the class, but all of the Making It students and listeners around the world. In this episode, you’ll learn some simple easy to use strategies, that will help you simplify the topic of touring, and answer a lot of the common questions I receive.

I’ve seen a lot of artists make many mistakes when it comes to touring. Yes, it’s fun and exciting to hit the road, but it can also be very costly and expensive. Touring up and down the coast or around the country over and over again to play in empty rooms, is just not a good way to do business. Now if you’re just looking for adventure, have at it. I’d love to just circle the country over and over again. However, when it comes to building a career and longevity, it’s better to do things with a strategy. Look at it as a roadmap. You don’t want your driver on the road blind without a game plan or a map to follow. You’ll never get to where you want to go that way, or at least it’ll take much longer. This episode is here to lay out a strategy for you when it comes to touring. It’s not the only way to do things, but it’s something to think about and something anyone could build off of and make it their own.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this solo/lecture style episode. The holidays are a great time to experiment with new formats for the podcast to learn what gives our listeners the most value going, so we can deliver the best content for you in 2018.

Additional Resources to Book Your Next Show/Tour:
1. Booking More Shows by Writing Better Emails to Talent Buyers, Promoters, and Venue Owners
- Use this article to help you book more shows, and write better emails as you’re mapping out your tours, or selecting which markets you’re going to play.

2. 40 Strategies to Promote Your Next Show
- Use this article to help you promote the shows you book, and make sure to grab the free marketing plan below.

3. How to Open for National Acts
- Use this article to help you get opening slots for national acts.

Make sure to read all these articles to really benefit from the strategies mentioned here.

Highlights from this episode:
[5:31] Playing with Purpose
[6:25] Determining your Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s)
[10:12] Who Books the Shows
[13:50] What are Promoters Looking For?  
[30:13] The types of Venues to Play
[35:34] How Often to Play
[39:40] Which Cities/Markets to Play
[42:52] How Many Cities to Develop at a Time

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Delta Rae
Foo Fighters
House of Blues New Orleans
Live Nation
Earthday Birthday
WJRR 101.1
Dickerman from WJRR
SunFest - West Palm Beach
AEG Present
Jason Hunnicutt of 1904 Music Hall
Ari Herstand
Creative Artist Agency (CAA)
William Morris Endeavor (WME)
Kessler Theater in Dallas, TX
Ari Nisman (College Booking Agent with Degy Entertainment)
Andy Grammer
Steve Aoki
Shannon Curtis
Dawn Beyer
Kyle Lemaire
Chris Stapleton on Joe Rogan Podcast
Hydrogen Child
Joe Pulizzi
How to Make It in the New Music Business by Ari Herstand

Booking Agent Interviews
Kevin Stone - Florida Theater - Jacksonville, FL
Wayne Lee - New Orleans, LA
Dan Larson - Okeechobee Music Fest / Venue 578 - Orlando, FL
Allen Anders - AEG Presents - Dallas, TX
Michael Yerke - Live Nation - Los Angeles, CA

Talent Buyer Interviews
Alec Vidmar - United Talent Agency (UTA)
Ari Nisman - Degy Entertainment
Jeff Howard - Agency for the Performing Arts (APA)
Pete Anderson - Agency for the Performing Arts (APA)
Jeremy Holgersen - United Talent Agency (UTA)
Joshua Knight - Paradigm Agency
Meg White - ICM Partners

Meg White - Booking Agent at ICM Partners: Success by the Power of Kindness, Hustle, Patience, and Building Meaningful Relationships

Ep.059 Cover Meg White (NEW).jpg

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher |

The foundation of the music business, and really for life, is developing strong and meaningful relationships. To kindness into those relationship, and always focusing on what can you do for them, versus what can they do for you. This starts with your first introduction, continues at your internship, to a potential job, and well beyond all of those. Meg White is a Booking Agent at ICM Partners, who has always focused on the strengths of her relationships, and at the end of the day just being a really good person. It’s this, combined with hard work, being patient, and never giving up that’s gotten her to where she is today. And even though she’s completely humble, she has been a rising star of the Music Industry, and continues to reach  to be the best version of herself that she can be. She does not let that get to her head, stays grounded, and is always focused on putting people first.

Meg White is a Booking Agent at ICM Partners. Her journey at ICM began after an internship at Roadrunner Records, working with and cold calling College Radio Stations. At ICM she has worked as an assistant under three very different personalities, from which she has learned many amazing lessons. She has worked as an assistant first for Scott Morris, to Marsha Vlasic, and finally to Mark Siegel, before becoming an agent herself. She’s a rising star in the music industry, and is becoming more and more of an influential agent in the business. In this conversation, she shares some of her stories of her journey, advice for artists on creating their tour strategy, best practices of reaching out to promoters to book your own shows, and how to develop a relationship with booking agents. She’s known as the “Red Headed Assassin,” and she kills with kindness.   

Highlights from this Episode
(3:56) Calls or emails?
(4:45) New Orleans and its hidden culinary gems
(6:33) The Red Headed Assassin
(7:58) What Meg looks for in an artist
(9:05) Networking out of the big cities
(10:08) How often do you go to shows?
(11:15) Tangible tools for artist exposure
(13:26) Touring strategy
(16:13) Different strategies in Hip Hop
(17:15) Email structure for promoters
(19:11) 8 sentence emails
(19:47) Submitting to an agent
(21:15) An agent being the first one on board
(21:50) Meg’s roster
(22:47) Starting and learning at ICM
(28:02) “Meg’s courses” for the music industry
(31:42) Touring experience
(35:03) Interring at ICM
(38:10) BTS questions
(38:30) First concert and first album
(39:22) Must-have routines
(39:53) Favorite book and documentary
(40:57) Meg’s Hollywood Vampires
(41:25) Fill-in-the-blanks

Quotes from Meg White
“Artists should be willing to network…this business is all about relationships”
“Just because your social numbers are high it doesn’t mean you’re gonna sell tickets”
“Unless you’re teaming up with an artist that sales tickets I wouldn’t go to bar that no one goes to”
“Regarding emails, keep them short and sweet”
“Stats look good to everybody”
“A sense of urgency is something that it’s not leaner, you just have to have it”
“[as an agent] there artist always comes first”
“College can never prepare you for the real life”
“You have to show that you care about people”
“Being able to handle even the smallest of issues…that’s how you build trust”
“Being an intern is beneficial especially if you follow up”
“There are more good people out there than bad ones”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Death From Above 1979
Brooklyn Steel
Lalah Hathaway
Mariah Carey
Count of Monte Cristo
Love Lucy
Hollywood Vampires
Frank Sinatra
Elvis Presley
Paul McCartney

Meg’s definition of making it
There’s no end of making it, I’m learning something new everyday

Get in touch with Meg White

Keep in touch:

Host: Chris Goyzueta (Chris G.)
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp
Show Notes: Manuel Pachamoro

Joshua Knight of Paradigm Agency - Creating Your Touring Strategy, Opening for National Acts, and Getting on an Agent's Radar

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher |

This is episode four of the Booking Agent series, and features booking agent, Joshua Knight. In the world of booking agencies, there are the Big 6 - CAA, WME, APA, UTA, ICM, and Paradigm. Joshua Knight spent most of his career at one of the premier boutique agencies in the world, Monterey International in Chicago, IL. He currently works with artists such as Los Lobos, Aaron Neville, The Meters, Trampled by Turtles, Leftover Salmon, Lettuce, The Motet, The Infamous Stringdusters, Nicki Bluhm, JJ Grey & Mofro, and many more. The day we conducted this interview, August 3rd 2017 for the fellow historians, it was announced that Monterey International was acquired by one of the Big 6 agencies, Paradigm Agency. Joshua Knight shares what this acquisition means for Monterey International and all of its agents, as well as some of the history between the two agencies.


Joshua Knight also shares many valuable lessons in this episode. We discuss what he looks for in artists that he works and we discuss some tangible items that DIY artists should be working on to get on the radar of agents like Joshua Knight. You’ll learn about his perspective on how often you should play in a market and how to open for national acts. He also shares lessons on what students of the business should learn while they’re in school, and his ideal curriculum. Also, he shares his insight on how to become an agent and much more.

To learn more about booking agents and opening for national acts, check out these other podcast episodes and articles.

This podcast is brought to you by Bandzoogle. Building a website should be easy. Bandzoogle is the website for musicians by musicians. Save 15% on your 1-Year Subscription with promo code "makingit" and start with your 30-Day FREE Trail

Highlights from this Episode
(5:26) Role at Monterey International
(6:10) What makes Monterey Unique
(7:45) Big news for Monterey
(10:45) History of Monterey
(14:20) How Joshua got into the business
(18:40) Ideal curriculum for the music business
(24:10) Why geography is important
(26:00) What Joshua looks for in an artist
(32:20) Tangible things for smaller bands to work on to get an agent
(34:45) Joshua’s opinion on markets               
(37:30) How often to return to a market
(39:00) Best way to reach out to an agent
(42:35) How a young band gets an opening slot
(44:55) What gets a good response from promoters
(47:40) How to get into an agency as a young professional
(53:00) How young professionals can build relationships

Quotes from Joshua Knight
“A lot of things we do are multiple things at once.”
“To be able to move at a quick pace is something you can’t learn.”
“It’s almost like we’re a logistics company.”
“It’s hard to make numbers up these days because you can get caught really easy.”
“The better you are with people the more you can get done.”
“If you can learn every facet of the business you’re going to do a lot better.”
“It’s all about making a living for these guys.”
“First and foremost keep building the markets.”
“You need to make it where your fans can’t miss it.”
“I’m going to sign a young band that has something to do with my other bands.”
“Sometimes you have to scratch each other's back.”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Agents at Monterey
Michael Jackson
Monterey International
Paradigm Agency
Los Lobos
The Meters
Aaron Neville
The Motet
Infamous Stringdusters
Nicki Bluhm
JJ Grey & Mofro
Trampled by Turtles
Neville Brothers
Dave Matthews Band
The Beatles
Grateful Dead
Anheuser Busch
Bud Light
Ghost of Paul Revere
The Maine

Get in Touch with Joshua Knight

Joshua Knight’s Definition of Making It
“Being happy.”
“If you can put a roof over your head, feed your family, and book bands.”

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Episode Credits
Host: Chris Goyzueta
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp

Jeremy Holgersen - Booking Agent for United Talent Agency with a 20+ Year Career Working with Influential Agents, Becoming a Leader and Building Powerful Teams

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher |

One of the common sayings in the music industry is that it takes a village to break an artist. Building powerful and dedicated teams that make smart decisions in the best interest of the artist, and are working everyday in service to their artist, can be a game changer. Jeremy Holgersen is a booking agent for United Talent Agency (UTA) in New York, NY. He has been a booking agent for over 20 years, having worked with some of the greatest agents in the business, and has helped put together some of the most powerful teams in the world of Hip-Hop. Jeremy has worked with artists such as Action Bronson, G-Eazy, Hatebreed, Gojira, Protoje, Ms. Lauryn Hill, and many more.

In this conversation we talk about how Jeremy Holgersen got started in the business, some of his mentors, agents he’s worked with and building powerful teams. From his days at The Agency Group, Jeremy has always been surrounded by some of the most talented agents in the business, and eventually started building teams with current superstar agents. Early in his career he has worked with teams such as Peter Schwartz, Zach Quillen, and Joshua Dick where he experienced first hand the rise and success of artists such as Macklemore. Today he has built and put together teams at UTA, which we talk about in this episode. We also discuss what he looks for in an artist he represents, the transition from The Agency Group to United Talent Agency and much more. We also cover what makes a great agent, and how to stand out working in the booking agent training program aka the mailroom to floater to assistant. He shares some great lessons on booking, touring, artist development, and much more.

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Highlights from this Episode
Role at UTA and artist Jeremy books (06:40)
What makes being an agent worth it (08:20)
Mentors in Jeremy’s career (10:45)
Backstory (12:45)
Roles as an intern (17:45)
Hip-Hop department lessons and stories (20:25)
RA vs Territorial System (24:20)
How the role as an agent has evolved (27:00)
Favorite success stories (29:00)
First signed act experience (31:55)
What Jeremy looks for in an artist (35:35)
When to tour and how many markets (37:32)
Agent Training Program (40:45)
Advice on how to work your way up (42:10)
Advice to students (44:30)
Daily habits for Jeremy (45:50)
Making It to Jeremy (50:00)

Quotes from Jeremy Holgerson
“You’re a real partner with the artist and the manager.”
“Make sure you’re thinking about the bigger picture for the artist.”
“Protect and focus and make sure you’re taking care of their brand.”
“Every artist is different; every manager is different. Each personality is different and you’re figuring that out every day.”
“Most people in the agency business are still in it.”
“When you’re in the business you figure out who gets stuff done.”
“I always paired up with people I would learn from.”
“You’re coming up with the best plan for that artists’ career.”
“You don’t have to get in a van and drive city to city and turn ten people into twenty.”
“You either get it or you don’t.”
“Anything you do in the music industry is a life style thing.”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Lauryn Hill
Lil Dicky
21 Savage
Action Bronson
Peter Schwartz
Joshua Dick
Zach Quillen
Cheryl Paglierani
Randall Urtiski 
Jonathan Briks
Ken Fermaglich 
Tim Borror 

Places & Things
United Talent Agency
Agency Group
Governors Ball
Shaky Knees Festival
Glass Jaw
Suicidal Tendencies
The Pogues
Bad Brains
Big Daddy Kane
Grateful Dead
Hate breed

Get in Touch with Jeremy Holgerson
*DISCLAIMER: Jeremy gets a ton of email. Please be respectful of his time and remember to always think about how can you add VALUE to a relationship. If you decide to email anyone, how can you add value to them, and not look at how it benefits you. That’s where you’ll build real relationships.

Jeremy Holgerson Definition of Making It
“I don’t know if you ever do. Waking up every day and thinking about the next challenge. Making it is being complacent.”

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Keep in touch:

Host: Chris Goyzueta
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp

Support the show for as little as $1/month on Patreon and get a ton of more content.

Pete Anderson - Booking Agent at Agency for the Performing Arts (APA) with an Innovative Approach to Developing Talent and Agent Success

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud  

Our booking agent series continues. This week’s guest is Pete Anderson, who is a booking agent at the Agency for the Performing Arts (APA) in Beverly Hills, CA. He got his start after a successful career in sales working at Dell, before transitioning to the William Morris Endeavor (WME) training program. After a few years working for WME, Pete transitioned his career to APA where he started under past podcast guest Jeff Howard. After quickly working his way up as an agent, Pete transitioned to the Los Angeles office for APA, where he became a true intrapreneur with an innovative approach to being an agent. In this episode we talk about Pete’s journey as an agent, what makes him stand out, also what he looks for in artist’s he works with, how to stand out as an independent promoter, and much more.

Pete’s Three Critical Aspects in Hiring Candidates

  1. Having a good skill of communication

  2. Attention to Detail & Work Ethic

  3. Sense of Style and Taste

Highlights from this episode
Life on the West Coast & Moving to LA Office [2:10]
Advantages & Disadvantages of LA versus Nashville [3:33]
Importance of going to shows [4:54]
Favorite part of being an agent and agents having the power of the business [6:01]
Pete’s influences [7:40]
The moment he knew he wanted to pursue a career in the music business [9:02]
How does someone get into an Agent Training Program [13:22]
What can students do today to be considered for an Agent Training Program [15:30]
How does someone stand out once they’re in the training program [17:15]
People that were working with Pete in the WME Training Class [19:45]
Pete’s transition from WME to APA [21:45]
First artist that Pete signed [23:21]
First 3 to 6 months after signing an artist [26:53]
What Pete looks for in an artist as an agent [30:05]
Is there value to an agent for an artist to have built a following [33:15]
Pete’s role at APA and artists/events he works with [34:39]
What makes someone a great agent [39:36]
If you had to become an agent in one year, how would you do it [42:24]
How does an independent promoter get on an agent’s radar [45:29]
Things every independent promoter should know [50:33]
Who comes to mind for the word successful [52:58]
Daily habits to stay sane [53:20]
Apps people should check out [55:00]
Favorite Books and Documentaries [56:19]
Who would Pete love to have a night of drinks with [57:33]
Best advice Pete has ever received [58:40]

Quotes from Pete Anderson
“It’s about learning how to deal with people and getting grit”
“You have to learn how to serve to work in the music industry”
“Everyone assists somebody else”
“Knowing what you want to do is very important”
“The most important thing is how you make the interviewers feel when they meet you”
“Understand the different scenes that are out there”
“I’ve never been afraid of asking, and I don’t think anyone should be”
“You need to continue to contribute to the business mission of the company”
“You can’t take an artist that has no audience, and just book club shows”
“Artist develop a following wherever they are, and you have to pay attention to that”
“The process of starting in the mailroom is a very important process”
“The reason people start in the mailroom is to develop their grit”
“Everybody is an assistant, our CEO is an assistant, it’s a service industry”
“50 Cent is a Rock Star, and you’re an assistant to 50 Cent”  
“Know great music, the history of music, and know what is trending”  
“It’s important to learn the job before they tell people they know how to do it”
“If you’re good, you’ll have a job for the next 40 years”
“Don’t get emotional when dealing with an agent”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Jimi Hendrix  
The Beach Boys  
Michael Ovitz
Rush Davenport (WME)
Brandon Roundtree (WME)
Jonathan Insogna (WME)
Kevin Meads (WME)
Chris Stapleton
Sturgill Simpson
Heath Baumhor (APA)
Jon Romero (Vector)
Marc Geiger (WME)
Kirk Sommer (WME)
Elton John
The Crystal Method
She Wants Revenge
Adam Bravin
Barack Obama
Darryl Eaton (CAA)
50 Cent
Sonny Schneidau

Places & Things  
Agency for the Performing Arts (APA)
William Morris Endeavor (WME)
Vanderbilt University
Dell Computers
Desert Daze
Burger Records
CAA Powerhouse [Book]
Yamaha Entertainment Group
The Five Spot (Nashville)
Creative Artists Agency (CAA)
Atlantic Records
United Talent Agency (UTA)
ICM Partners  
Live Nation
Buffett: The Making of An American Capitalist [Book by Roger Lowenstein]
The Agency [Book by Frank Rose]
True North [Book by Jim Harrison]
Off to the Side [Book by Jim Harrison]

Pete Anderson’s Definition of Making It
“I what you do, what you say, and what you think is the same thing, you’re going to be happy”

Keep in touch with Pete Anderson

Keep in touch:

Host: Chris Goyzueta
Producer: Jason Trosclair
Executive Producer: ONElive Creative Agency  
Music: Emily Kopp

Support the show for as little as $1/month on Patreon and get a ton of more content.

Fran Snyder - The Power of Building a Worldwide House Concerts Network of Over 1,000 Hosts

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud   

One of the keys to business that I’ve learned from my mentors that it’s important to be genuine, authentic, and to be an innovator. In a very saturated music industry, this is more important than ever. Anyone can put up music on Spotify, Soundcloud, or YouTube, and book shows in clubs across the country. How do you stand out from all the noise? At the end of the day, every artist starts out as a small business. How do you grow that business? Fran Snyder is an innovator who thinks outside of the box, and doesn’t try to follow the basic rules of put your music and content online, book a bunch of shows, promote them like hell, and pray something happens.

This is part two of our house concerts series, and in this episode features Fran Snyder, a singer-songwriter and the Founder of Concerts In Your Home, The Listening Room Network, and the Listening Room Festival. In this you’ll learn about his company, Concerts In Your Home. We discuss how to be part of the network as a host and as an artist. The network has over 1,000 hosts all over the world. You’ll learn what hosts are looking for, and how to book a tour oversees through the network, and much more. We spend some time on Fran’s backstory of following the “formula” of grinding through clubs and the college circuit, until the switch flipped and he became one of the pioneers of the house concerts movement.

“House Concerts are the Emotional Anchors to a Tour” - Hans York

 Highlights from this Episode
The resurgence of House Concerts [6:10]
When did the entrepreneurial spirit start for Fran Snyder [9:52]
The first time playing live and Fran’s booking process in the beginning [13:46]
When Fran discovered playing House Concerts [19:28]
How Fran finds hosts and how to become a host [25:31]
How does an artist become part of the network, and what genres work best [32:15]
What kind of video should artists submit [38:14]
How does the process work once an artist is accepted [41:12]
How do artists get paid and all the different opportunities? [43:48]
What types of artists are part of the network and how to work this into your touring strategy [50:22]
Countries that are part of the network and active and can artists use this to get overseas [52:18]
Stories of artists that are part of the network [56:32] 

Quotes from Fran Snyder
“Recorded music wants to become free”
“I’m training this audience on listening rooms, because we don’t want to see the public performance disappear.”
“We want our artists to have a listening audience and a living wage.”
“If you want to be a musician, start now.”
“Once we started charging for the application process, it immediately improved the quality.”
“People really value the feedback that they’re getting.”
“House Concerts are becoming often times the anchor date.”
“(House Concerts) can be a beautiful working vacation.”
“What’s really fun is what happens after the gig.”
“Often times you become part of these people’s lives and become lifelong friends.”
“We play music because it’s our favorite way to connect with people.”
“Are you creating moments that you’re going to remember?”  

Links to people, places, and things mentioned
Barry Manilow
Indigo Girls
Shannon Curtis
Hans York
Buzz Cason 

Places & Things
Concerts In Your Home
The Living Room Network
The Listening Room Festival  
NACA College Conference  

Keep in touch with Fran Snyder:

Definition of Making It by Fran Snyder
“Having a career on  your terms. Every artist has to define success for themselves.”

Shannon Curtis - How to Earn Over $50k in 4 Months Playing House Concerts - An Innovative Approach to Building a Fulfilling Music Career

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud   

Sometimes I bring guests on the show that are successful entrepreneurs, marketers, and content creators outside of the music business, and relate their lessons and insight to artists and students of the music business. Shannon Curtis has a completely unique approach to her music career, from which people in ALL industries can learn her lessons on community and creating genuine deep relationships.  Shannon Curtis is an independent songwriter, singer, performer, recording artist, speaker, and author, based in Los Angeles. Her fourth full-length record, entitled Creationism, was released on June 17, 2016, and debuted on Nielsen's Top New Artists Albums chart.

Shannon Curtis is a fearless innovator of the music business taking her career completely in her own hands. In 2011, she performed her first house concert and was hooked on the art of building a community around house concerts. Shortly after she grossed over $25K and wrote a book about her experience called “No Booker, No Bouncer, No Bartender, How I made $25K on a 2-Month House Concert Tour (And How you can too)” Today, she’s performing over 70 house shows in less than four months every Summer grossing over $50K. In this episode she shares how she discovered house concerts, how she was able to build her own community through her supporters without relying on other networks or middle people. Shannon shares her beautiful philosophy on focusing on building community, not fans. We also talk about her new album, and all the projects she works on during her time off road, which also includes writing personal songs for people.

Curtis’s music has been featured prominently in independent film & in TV shows such as ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars, MTV’s The Hills, and ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Curtis lives in Los Angeles with her husband, record producer Jamie Hill.  This was an incredibly inspiring episode for me. I meet so many artists and students of the music business every day trying to navigate their way through the business. I try to push and force them to think outside of the box, and figure out a way to stand out and be completely different form the norm and following the “formula.” Shannon Curtis is not only completely creative with her art, but had a complete creative and genuine approach to entrepreneurship that builds deep connections with people in her community.

Get a Copy of Shannon's Book:


Highlights from this Episode
Breakdown of Shannon’s house concert tour (04:40)
How to describe Shannon’s music (06:55)
What lit the fire for the music industry (7:50)
Four years of being an up and coming artist (12:30)
Story of the first house concert (15:05)
How Shannon occupies her time while she’s not on the road (21:55)
First concert and first album bought (25:50)
Who comes to mind when Shannon thinks “Successful” (27:12)
Advice for artists attempting a house concert tour (27:50)
DIY venue experiences (32:55)
Most effective way to run a house concert, beginning to end (36:15)
Asking process to the host of the house concert (43:00)
How Shannon does ice breakers (49:35)
Worst concert and what was learned (51:35)
Shannon explains fans vs community philosophy (56:25)
Advice for successful social media use (1:01:05)
What to expect for Shannon’s new work (1:04:40)
Crowdfunding done differently (1:07:55)
 Shannon’s creative process (1:09:00)
Rapid Fire Questions (1:10:00)
Making It (1:15:40)

Quotes from Shannon Curtis
“We intentionally sound artful. They aren’t intended to sound like anything you’d hear on the radio.”
“You make decent money playing in colleges.”
“I don’t equate success success with money.”
“If you allow yourself to engage with those people as a human then maybe people will respond.”
“Once you give yourself the permission to step outside that and be brave, and you let yourself be seen a little more nakedly; honestly I feel like that is the moment people start responding.”
“The minute I stepped outside was the minute I started experiencing more connection.”
“They’re not people who host house concerts. They are people who know me.”
“We’re reaching new markets of people because we see new people.”
“They are other ways to do so much better for yourself.”
“If you can plan out the way you see the event happening, you can maximize you income.”
“The more you can make a connection. The more they will give in donations.”
“The people who love you the most want to see you achieve”
“You call them fans, I call them community.”
“They are likely to say yes if they have the ability to.”
“What I want to do is bring value into this world.”
“I’m make the conversation about getting to know them.”
“We learned that we needed to be a lot more specific.”
“You and I are made in the same life.”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned

Amy Grant

Places & Things
No Booker, No Bouncer, No Bartender
I Am Not Your Negro

Get in Touch with Shannon Curtis

Support Shannon and Jamie’s Patreon Campaign:

Shannon Curtis’ Definition of Making It
“I’m making it. I’m making music and I can pay my bills.”

Shannon Curtis at TEXxArlington

After Shannon shared the link of her official bio, I noticed she did this beautiful TED Talk on her experience of house concerts, and the deep connections she's built with her community. Inspiring!!

Samantha Jennings - A True Road Warrior Blazing Through Arenas Across the World. A Sleepless, and Badass Road Manager Extraordinaire.

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud   

Samantha Jennings is a Road Manager and true Road Warrior having toured in tour buses and arena shows such as Luke Bryan, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Florida Georgia Line, Hillsong UNITED, and many more. In this conversation, Samantha shares her stories, wisdom, and insight in a very raw and honest way. She shares her story on how she got started in the business, and people that inspired her during her time at Full Sail University. Also, you’ll learn how a great work ethic and positive attitude has helped work her way up very quickly in the business. Sometimes it’s about knowing the right people, sometimes it’s about being at the right place at the right time, it’s always about having a great work ethic and attitude, and sometimes you’ll need to get all the cards to stack in your favor. Samantha is well on a journey to an amazing career in this crazy entertainment industry.

I first met Samantha Jennings at a show at House of Blues in Orlando, FL through Ana Reina, who has been a mentor to both of us. Shortly afterwards, Sam interned for me at The Plaza Live in Orlando. Through her work ethic and great attitude she quickly became a runner, which lead to the path that she is on now. She has gotten to where she is today through her work ethic and doing everything with a smile on her face. The craziest thing is that she has only been out of school for less than five years. She is on a path of doing many amazing things in life.

After we recorded the podcast, she came and guest spoke in one of my classes and was completely nervous. Not only did she deliver that same badass and raw honesty, but also the students totally loved Sam. They really appreciated hearing the truth on what really happens out on the road and the challenges of being a female on the road. However, regardless of all the challenges she continues to take down one obstacle after another like a true road warrior on a mission. Before this podcast, I haven’t seen Sam in five years, and it was really cool to catch up and inspiring to see how far she has come so quickly. We’ll definitely have to make her a regular on the show, and can’t wait to share more stories and lessons with the “Making It” listeners. Thank you Samantha Jennings, and thank you for listening!

Highlights from this Episode
Samantha’s first experience into the music industry (05:20)
What lit the spark for the business (05:55)
Bands that inspired Samantha (06:50)
Why Full Sail? (08:20)
Experience at Full Sail (10:30)
Lessons learned while working at The Plaza (12:40)
Responsibilities at the Plaza (14:26)
Runner job descriptions (14:55)
Reminiscing on events at The Plaza (15:35)
How to do a good job as a Runner (17:05)
How Samantha got the gob at Live Nation (18:20)
Differences between The Plaza shows and arena shows (19:45)
Preview of Tours worked (21:50)
Experience on Luke Bryan’s tour (23:20)
Difference between Luke Bryan’s tour and Macklemore (28:30)
First tour manager job (29:43)
Responsibilities as a road manager (30:30)
Advice to get started as a tour manager (36:05)
How to find the next job (38:10)
Challenges Samantha didn’t expect as a tour manager (40:50)
Touring Survival Kit (45:00)
Favorite moments on the road (47:00)
Samantha’s wishes for promoters (50:00)
Best way to manage a large team (53:50)
Local crew experiences (56:00)
How do the groupies get in (57:35)
First person who comes to mind when ‘successful’ is mentioned. (1:00:30)
First Concert / First Album (1:00:50)
Daily routine (1:01:40)
T-Shirt Message (1:04:22)
Making it to Samantha (1:07:00)

Quotes from Samantha Jennings
“I met the best people ever in Orlando.”
“Being at The Plaza gave me the tools to really know what goes on.”
“It’s important to work on every scale.”
“Attitude is everything.”
“If you have a bad attitude it makes it hard on everybody.”
“Just Smile!”
“It’s 18 hour days.”
“It has a lot to do with the artist and what to expect.”
“A lot of walking, super long hours, no sleep.”
“A road manager is just a glorified babysitter, and there is no time you’re not working.”
“If you’re not removing worry, you’re creating it.”
“I think there’s a difference between a road manager and a tour manager”
“You don’t walk in to being a tour manager.”
“You have to be willing to do any role.”
“It’s networking.”
“It really is who you know and who you meet.”
“I hate to say this because it bothered me so much because you want there to be a rhythm and reason but there isn’t. The opportunities just come up.”
“As soon as you wake up, you hit the ground running.”
“It’s about your attitude, you have to be cool.”
“You have bad days but you can never show it.”
“A good black zip up hoodie is a staple.”
“The people out there don’t realize what we put in to make this happen”
“It’s not all about money, its really about the experience.”
“We’re all out there because we’re responsible, we’re good at our job, we have our shit together.”
“If you can’t do your job right with a smile on your face, you’re gone. There’s tons of people who want your job.”
“The good news is nothing last forever, the bad news is nothing last forever.”
“It’s life, just roll with it.”

Links to people, places, and things mentioned

Childish Gambino
Trailer Park Boys
Kevin Stone
Adam Taylor

Rod Stewart
Stevie Nicks
Luke Bryan
Brit Nicole
Toby Mac
Colton Dixon
Thomas Rhett
Kevin Lyman
Shep Gordon
Scooter Braun

Places & Things
The Ramones
Warped Tour
Avenged Sevenfold
Foo Fighters
Blink 182
Full Sail University
Indiana University
The Plaza Live
House of Blues
Florida Theatre
Live Nation
Amway Center Orlando
Jimmy Johns
Hillsong United
Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki [BOOK] 

Get in Touch with Samantha Jennings
Facebook: Samantha Jennings
Instagram: TheSamanthaJennings 

Samantha Jennings Definition of Making It
“I think it’s always changing, especially in the industry that we’re in. Then again Scooter Braun, he made it.”
“Having an artist that I manage that is doing arenas and stadiums.”

Adam Taylor - Delta Rae Tour and Production Manager on Life on the Road

You can also listen to this episode on iTunes | Stitcher | SoundCloud

Adam Taylor graduated from Full Sail University with degrees in Show Production and Music Business. After graduating, he went on to work with me at The Plaza Live in Orlando, FL where he became the production manager. Then he went on to become the Tour and Production Manager for Delta Rae with whom he ran sound for the band at the Democratic National Convention where he met Michelle Obama, David Letterman, he has been part of festivals such as Bonnaroo, Hangout Fest, Voodoo Fest, Austin City Limits and many more.

Adam has travelled the world with Delta Rae and is only in the early stages for what is going to be a very beautiful career. We’re going to learn what life on the road is like from a Tour Manager and Production manager perspective and what it takes to land in one of those careers. He’s creative as a production manager and is willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. I hope you enjoy this ride down the road, with Tour Manager Adam Taylor.  

Quotes Mentioned
“Be prepared to do extra work on top of what you think you deserve.”
“Your attitude is what’s gonna take you further than anything.”
“You can’t confirm enough times; you can’t plan far enough out in advance.”
“Breathe, take a break, it’s all serious, but don’t take it so serious.”
“Reach out to that stack of business cards.”

Links to Things Mentioned
Delta Rae
Master Tour (Tour Management & Logistics) 
AudioTools (Pro Audio Analysis)
Dave Rat Videos
The Wire (TV Show)

Get in Touch with Adam
Buy a Delta Rae concert ticket and visit the audio console!
Twitter/Instagram: @wadamt

Their definition of Making It
“Waking up and still loving what you’re doing.”