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100 issues young: New IQ Magazine out now

The landmark 100th issue of IQ Magazine, which includes reflections from staff past and present on IQ’s first 17 years, is now available to read for subscribers.

In addition to this rare moment of self-reflection, the 100th (June 2021) edition of IQ has in-depth features on post-pandemic recruitment and restaffing, the ‘New Europeans’ who have been forced by Brexit to relocate from the UK to the continent, and the new independent booking outfits shaking up the agency world.

Columns, meanwhile, look at accessibility, contracts and the devastating cancellation of Australia’s Bluesfest – which was cancelled at the 11th hour following a single positive Covid-19 test – while regular content such as news analysis and new agency signings will keep you abreast of all the latest developments in the international live music industry.

As usual, the majority of magazine content will appear online in some form in the next four weeks. However, if you can’t wait for your fix of essential live music industry features, opinion and analysis, click here to subscribe to IQ for just £5.99 a month – or check out what you’re missing out on with the limited preview below:

 

IQ subscribers can log in and read the full magazine now.

 


This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.

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ATL acquires Finland’s Till Dawn They Count

Till Dawn They Count, the Finnish artist management company which represents symphonic metal icons Nightwish, has joined Nordic live entertainment group All Things Live.

Till Dawn They Count joins Weekend Festival to become the second Finnish member of All Things Live (ATL), a network of mainly Scandinavian live music businesses backed by private-equity firm Waterland. It is also the first management company to join the group.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, though ATL notes that “the acquisition does not entail changes for artists, partners, customers or employees, as proximity and familiarity is a key area of focus for the All Things Live partnership”.

In addition to Nightwish, Till Dawn They Count (TDTC) looks after leading Finnish metal stars, including Sonata Arctica, Beast in Black and Marko Hietala.

“I am very excited about the prospect of Till Dawn They Count becoming a member of the All Things Live family, who shares our ambition to help realise the vision and potential of both established and emerging artists,” says Toni Peiju, who founded TDTC with Ewo Pohjola in 2014.

“We see great prospects in the dedicated Till Dawn They Count team … and the expansion into artist management

“We maintain our independence and strong dedication to our bands, with the All Things Live partnership broadening our network and providing us with a strong and supporting organisation that further strengthens our ability to help develop established and emerging artists alike. Meanwhile, we are looking forward to contributing to the partnership with our knowhow and network.”

“We are very excited about Till Dawn They Count joining the All Things Live partnership, as we now establish a strong entry into the artist management activities of live entertainment,” says Kim Worsøe, CEO of All Things Live.

“We see great prospects in the dedicated Till Dawn They Count team, the many talented artists and the expansion into artist management. Together we establish an even stronger platform and ability to grow artists.”

In addition to Weekend Festival and TDTC, All Things Live’s other businesses include ICO Concerts and ICO Management & Touring (Denmark), Friction, Atomic Soul Booking and Stand Up Norge (Norway), and Maloney Concerts, Monkfish, Big Slap and ROA (Sweden). It also recently made its first investment outside the Nordic countries, in Belgian agency Busker.

 


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MMF updates guide to mental health

The Music Managers Forum (MMF) has published a new expanded version of the MMF Guide to Mental Health 2021 – a free online resource tailored specifically to the wellbeing concerns of modern-day managers.

Stress management, imposter syndrome, anxiety and depression, alcoholism and drug dependency, and healthy boundaries are among the issues addressed in the guide, which also includes a full directory of professional support services and signposting to further reading and detailed expertise.

The guide was originally made available in 2017 in partnership with music charities Music Support and Help Musicians.

The updated version, which is being discussed today at music industry conference The Great Escape, is co-authored with Sam Parker of specialist music mental health consultants Parker Consulting and co-founder of Music Support.

MMF Chair and Biffy Clyro manager Paul Craig has penned the introduction and chairman and CEO of Universal Music UK David Joseph has written the guide’s closing words.

“Managers often experience extreme stress which has only recently been properly recognised”

“I’m really proud that the MMF continues to recognise the importance of mental health support for music managers and artists,” says MMF chair and Biffy Clyro manager, Paul Craig.

“Through initiatives like this updated guide and our revised Code of Practice we continue to be part of a vital industry-wide conversation. Managers and artists often experience extreme stress, with a myriad of highs and lows, which has only recently been properly recognised and which the pandemic has exacerbated and placed immense focus on. The more we talk openly and candidly about these pressures, the better the safeguarding and guidance everyone will be able to provide in the coming years.”

Sam Parker, co-author of the MMF Mental Health Guide, says: “Music has the power to educate, to break down cultural, social and economic barriers, to influence politics and promote cultural appreciation. As an audience member at a live show it can make you dance, sing and share a common experience with those around you that will be remembered forever. It enriches the human experience.

“What better job could there be than to facilitate this? But sometimes the level of intensity can take its toll. This updated guide takes some of those challenges and presents solutions, which I hope will allow artist managers to successfully support the work and careers of their artists without sacrificing their own health and well-being in the process. All whilst performing a job that is truly unique. I look forward to discussing the nature of this relationship and the guide at the Great Escape today.”

 


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Mental health influences the success of the entire industry

I probably was the best example for the lack of awareness about mental health and its challenges that can be found anywhere in our industry. Yes, I always considered mental health a very important issue but of course for those with issues and not for me. That is probably why I never let it get closer to me. Well, until I had my own.

Those incidents happened five years ago and it took about three months of uncertainty until I was diagnosed with panic attacks and able to start working with the issue (and for the record: I was successful). Unsurprisingly, only then do you begin to appreciate the luxury of everything going normally until it is no longer the case – especially when it comes to one’s own health.

During this time, I found out how little it takes to fully question business as usual, or at least to mess it up almost completely. I sometimes felt unprofessional because I suddenly had to spend valuable working time on myself and my health but it simply takes its time and effort to address these things.

I always considered mental health a very important issue but of course for those with issues and not for me

And I found out that there were many situations in my private life but also in my professional life that added up to the point that “the pot finally boiled over”. To name just a few: The disappointments of a musician who never was able to take the decisive step. The boss who, in passing, gives the wisdom that in our job you cannot have a regular private life, let alone a relationship. The responsibility for all public communication around a tragic death within a festival without being trained in any way for such a case. The effects that a tense working atmosphere on a very personal level leaves behind in the context of a project running for decades.

All of this I would have approached or processed differently knowing what I know now. It is of course utopian to think that we can prepare for all possible cases, but I am convinced without any doubt that more knowledge, understanding and acceptance of circumstances make an enormous difference.

The responsibility for mental health issues does not necessarily lie within the person experiencing them

And that is the reason I embraced the idea of my friend, psychologist Prof. Dr Katja Ehrenberg, to create a book that helps raising awareness. It is called Stay Sound & Check Yourself and is intended to help ensure better understanding and appropriate attention to a topic that has a decisive influence on the success and creativity of the entire industry.

The two of us took a glimpse behind the scenes of the European live music, festival and event sector. Together with inspiring interview partners we turned the spotlights on the people behind the stages. We were happy to gather experts from eleven European countries to talk in often very personal individual interviews about their experiences with stress and mental health issues, the love for their job and what motivates them.

‘Stay Sound & Check Yourself’ is intended to help ensure better understanding and appropriate attention to [mental health]

We are proud to have achieved a great mix of genders, age groups and many different positions in the industry from a young social media expert to a veteran festival director. Our book is meant to be an in-depth feature of personal insights on stress and mental health in an industry that never sleeps, enriched by background information on the issue as well as suggestions for prevention and intervention – thanks to Katja’s massive expertise. And yes, there is a full chapter on the unprecedented stress-test that the ongoing pandemic is presenting to our industry.

So, after spending centuries of hard work placing the topic of mental health in the taboo corner it is also up to us now to work on this corner to disappear and deal with the reality. A reality that means that these things happen, that they can happen to everyone, that the responsibility for mental health issues does not necessarily lie within the person experiencing them, and that people simply are different.

For some reason, they have different dispositions and are differently resilient in different situations, just as they bring different skills, talents and a kind of magic that only they can perform. That is why Stay Sound & Check Yourself is dedicated to the innumerable people who you normally cannot see, but without whom the stars could never shine on stage.

 


Stay Sound & Check Yourself is out now. Order via your local bookshop or the links below:
Austria | Denmark | Finland | France | Germany | Hungary | Italy | Lithuania | The Netherlands | Poland | Slovakia | Spain | Sweden | Switzerland | UK

All author profits from book sales will be reinvested to projects promoting visibility of the issue and building prevention and intervention tools.

MJR’s Nathan Stone launches Gallos Talent

Nathan Stone, the former creative director of the TEG MJR and the creator of DragWorld, has launched Gallos Talent, a new UK-based LGBTQ+ talent management company.

In his six years at TEG MJR (formerly the MJR Group), Stone promoted shows including Hans Zimmer, Bianca Del Rio, Harry Potter in Concert, Final Fantasy’s Distant Worlds, Courtney Act and Sasha Velour, as well as leading on the company’s licensed exhibitions, such as Marvel’s Avengers Station and Lego expo Brickman. He also helped create MJR’s popular drag convention, DragWorld.

Gallos Talent is working with acts including drag queens Juno Birch and Joe Black (as seen on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK), and also offering its services as a partner to events such as Trans Festival London and Cornwall Pride.

“In a period which has been so brutal to our industry, I, like many, have had to realign, regroup and reenter the workplace,” says Stone.

“We are excited to welcome Nathan to the company and begin managing our expansion in to Europe”

“I am very excited to be furthering my specialisation in the LGBTQ+ events industry with both Five Senses Reeling and the launch of Gallos Talent.”

The official launch of Gallos Talent comes as Stone is appointed head of touring for Seattle-based promoter Five Senses Reeling, whose expansion into Europe he will lead.

Specialising in the LGBTQ+ market, Five Senses Reeling has promoted North American shows by drag icons including Bianca Del Rio, Katya Zamolodchikova, Miz Cracker, Bob the Drag Queen and Fortune Feimster.

“We are excited to welcome Nathan to the company and begin managing our expansion in to Europe,” says the company’s owner, Jason Brotman, “as well as working with the existing team on the North American touring.”

 


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Yvonne Stausbøll joins EMMA as exec director

The European Music Managers Alliance (EMMA) has appointed Yvonne Stausbøll to the newly created position of executive director.

Stausbøll will be based in Brussels, from where she will be responsible for the general management of EMMA and the organisation’s engagement on policy issues in Europe and internationally. With over 25 years’ experience working in public affairs in Brussels, Stausbøll brings extensive knowledge of the European public policy environment – including 15 years combined in the European Commission and European Parliament – to the organisation, according to EMMA.

Formerly head of energy sector trade association UPEI, Stausbøll has in recent years been working with music and culture organisations including Freemuse and Music Without Borders.

“Yvonne’s extensive experience will … ensure music managers have representation at the heart of European policy discussions”

Commenting on the appointment, Per Kviman, chair of EMMA, says: “I am delighted to welcome Yvonne as our new executive director and look forward to working with her.

“This is a significant step for EMMA. Yvonne’s extensive experience will help take our organisation forward, ensuring music managers have representation at the heart of European policy discussions and expanding our engagement with other music-based organisations.”

EMMA brings together Music Managers Forums (MMF) in Belgium, Finland, France, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the UK, and has links to allied organisations in Australia, Canada and New Zealand. Its members represent more than 1,200 artist managers in Europe.

 


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IQ 99 out now: NFT ticketing tech & more

IQ 99, the latest issue of the international live music industry’s favourite monthly magazine, is available to read online now.

In May’s edition, IQ examines the hype around nonfungible tokens and the exciting possibilities they can bring to ticketing, while news editor Jon Chapple discovers some of the ways that live entertainment can embrace sustainability in its return to action.

In comments and columns, the Australian Festivals Association’s Julia Robinson discusses how a lack of government-backed insurance could impact business confidence and Laura Davidson explains the driving force behind her new female-led live services consultancy, Amigas.

Following the inaugural edition of IPM Production Notes in IQ 98, tour manager Rebecca Travis reflects on 20 years on the road and one year off, while Mike Malak updates readers on the new technology impacting the music industry in Pulse.

Plus, enjoy the regular content you’ve come to expect from your monthly IQ Magazine, including news and new agency signings – the majority of which will appear online in some form in the next four weeks.

Whet your appetite with the preview below, but if you can’t wait for your fix of essential live music industry features, opinion and analysis, click here to subscribe now and receive IQ 99 in its entirety. Subscribers can log in and read the full magazine now.

 


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Chris Carey joins LIVE as chief economist

Live music Industry Venues and Entertainment (LIVE) has appointed Chris Carey to the role of chief economist, as the umbrella organisation expands with the formation of several specialist subcommittees.

Carey joins the LIVE team following stints as global insight director at EMI and Universal Music Group and senior economist at PRS for Music. With Tim Chambers, he co-authored Valuing Live Entertainment and UK Live Music: At a cliff edge, two key LIVE reports which underpinned consultations with the British government around support for the live sector. Carey will also retain his current position as head of international marketing at TicketSwap in Amsterdam.

“I’m very proud to be joining the LIVE team at this critical time,” says Carey. “I have always been passionate about the UK live music sector and about the people who work all hours to make gigs and festivals happen. As the live music industry moves from crisis to reopening, I’ll be working closely with members to make sure there is a strong analytical foundation to help underpin a speedy, sustainable recovery.”

LIVE, which launched officially in February, is a federation of 13 UK live music industry associations representing 3,150 businesses, over 4,000 artists and 2,000 backstage workers.

“I’ll be working … to make sure there is a strong analytical foundation to help underpin a speedy, sustainable recovery”

Its newly announced subcommittees include:

The fourth subcommittee, scheduled to launch next month, will focus on equality, diversity and inclusivity, and is convened by Jane Beese, head of music for the Manchester International Festival.

“We are living through an extraordinary period in history,” comments Beese. “The potential for reflection and creative thinking on how we live our lives and run our businesses is immense, so I’m really excited to take on this role overseeing the LIVE diversity, equality and inclusion group. I look forward to the changes we can bring about as an industry.”

 


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5B Artist Management makes new hires

International music management company 5B Artists and Media, home to hard rock/metal acts including Slipknot, Megadeth, Stone Sour, Lamb of God, Behemoth and Trivium, has hired artist manager James Vitalo.

Vitalo, who brings acts such as Turnstile, Knocked Loose, Gatecreeper, Terror and Harms Way, joins 5B after five years at New Jersey-based Good Fight Entertainment.

5B Artists and Media has offices in Los Angeles, Brooklyn (New York) and Birmingham (UK), and also comprises a record label, a film and music festival production arm, a booking agency and a digital marketing agency.

“I’m incredibly excited to begin working with James and the amazing artists he represents,” 5B founder and CEO Cory Brennan says. “His energy, positivity and sheer determination is second to none and aligns perfectly with that of 5B. We welcome his invaluable perspective, and look forward to developing and uncovering the next generation of important artists alongside him.”

“I couldn’t ask for a better opportunity than to work with 5B”

Vitalo adds: “I couldn’t ask for a better opportunity than to work with 5B. The team has an incredible reputation for being hardworking and forward-thinking, while also maintaining a level of ethics that can sometimes be lost in the music industry.

“Everything they work on, from festivals like Knotfest to initiatives like Rock Against Racism, highlights the range of capabilities and thoughtfulness of the company. 5B has always been at the forefront of pushing the underground to the highest level and I’m excited for myself and the bands I manage to be part of what’s to come.”

In other 5B news, the company has promoted senior artist manager Brad Fuhrman to vice-president and Stephen Reeder from director of digital to senior director of digital.

“When you’ve got people like Brad and Stephen on the team, you count yourself lucky,” comments 5B president Bob Johnsen. “We at 5B take pride in what we do and how we do it, and no matter what comes at us these two keep innovating and helping to make us all smarter.”

 


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IQ 98 paves the road to recovery for live music

IQ 98, the latest issue of the international live music industry’s favourite monthly magazine, is available to read online now.

In April’s edition, IQ takes a journey down ‘The Road to Recovery’ to examine some of the test events and programmes taking place across the globe that could help to restart international touring.

IQ Magazine editor Gordon Masson checks in with some of live music’s leading insurance brokers about the state of their business and how that might impact plans for 2021 and beyond.

Tom Schroeder, Tiffany Hudson, Marta Pallarès and Chris Kansy contribute to a double bill of comments

Elsewhere, Paradigm’s Tom Schroeder outlines why everyone must buy into music’s green agenda, Tiffany Hudson talks therapy on tour, Primavera Sound’s Marta Pallarès issues a call-to-arms for a more gender-inclusive industry and production manager Chris Kansy reflects on life in lockdown, in a double bill of comments.

Nostalgic about ILMC 33, already? Reflect on the highlights from the conference both in the IQ 98 feature and Your Shout.

Plus, enjoy the regular content you’ve come to expect from your monthly IQ Magazine, including news and new agency signings, the majority of which will appear online in some form in the next four weeks.

Whet your appetite with the preview below, but if you can’t wait for your fix of essential live music industry features, opinion and analysis, click here to subscribe now and receive IQ 98 in its entirety. Subscribers can log in and read the full magazine now.

 


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.