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The New Bosses 2021: Will Marshall, Primary/ICM

The New Bosses 2021 – the latest edition of IQ’s annual celebration of the brightest young talent in the live business today, as voted for by their peers – was published in IQ 103 this month, revealing the 12 promising promoters, bookers, agents, entrepreneurs that make up this year’s list.

To get to know this year’s cohort a little better, IQ conducted interviews with each one of 2021’s New Bosses, discovering their greatest inspirations and pinpointing the reasons for their success.

Catch up on the previous 2021 New Bosses interview with Talissa Buhl, festival booker at FKP Scorpio in Germany here.

Born and raised in London, Will Marshall started out running monthly showcase events in the city’s East End, combined with spells working for Live Nation’s festival production team, while studying.

Earning a degree in architecture, in 2014 he dropped the books to join Metropolis Music before heading to Primary Talent in 2016 as an agent, working with Matt Bates. Marshall’s roster is as eclectic and wide-ranging as the London music scene he grew up admiring: alt-pop, electronic, rap, rock, folk and indie acts all garner attention.


A degree in architecture isn’t the traditional route into music – are there any parallels at all with being an agent?
Both have set me up for a life of late nights and impending deadlines, but in all seriousness, there is a problem-solving nature that connects the two, usually within a collaborative framework, and almost always with a slightly competitive drive.

You ran regular showcases when you were a student. How did you find the talent and has that experience helped you understand the job of promoters better?
In terms of the latter, definitely. When it comes to decision making and giving clear advice, the understanding and knowledge of those companies, their different departments and how they operate is key.

Regarding sourcing talent, it sounds simple but I would just put on events and book acts whose music I liked. The way in which music is consumed now means that everyone is their own curator; the tastes you are catering for have exploded exponentially. That is exciting, especially as we push for a more inclusive music scene.

“The advent of widespread livestreaming highlighted just how pivotal crowds are in creating the moments that we do this for”

Do you have a mentor or anyone you turn to for advice?
Probably too many to single out but I feel very lucky because my job requires me to connect with people in all different parts of the industry from all around the world, so they keep my view well rounded. My family and friends keep me grounded and remind me what is really important.

What are you most looking forward to as pandemic restrictions are lifted?
Crowds, and the energy, together with the artist, that they can create. Whilst the advent of widespread livestreaming presented artists and their teams and crew with much needed earning opportunities, it also highlighted just how pivotal crowds are in creating the special moments that we all do this for.

The pandemic has been hard on us all – are there any positive aspects that you are taking out of it?
We’ve seen a lot of people struggling in the slow down and the uncertainty. The pause has given us a moment to make decisions more consciously and in disrupting the pace there has been more time for conversations around sustainability, and gender and race equality. I hope these conversations continue and that they can further shape behaviour and action.

 


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The New Bosses: Class of 2021 revealed

The latest edition of IQ‘s New Bosses goes live today, celebrating the brightest talent aged 30 and under in the international live music business.

The New Bosses 2021 honours no fewer than a dozen young executives, as voted by their colleagues around the world.

The 14th edition of the annual list inspired the most engaged voting process to date, with hundreds of people taking the time to submit nominations.

Our distinguished dozen this year comprises promoters, bookers, agents, entrepreneurs and more, all involved in the international business and each of whom is making a real difference in their respective sector.

In alphabetical order, the New Bosses 2021 are:

As in previous years, full interviews with each of the 2021 New Bosses will appear online in the coming days and weeks. However, subscribers can read short individual profiles of each New Boss now in issue 103 of IQ Magazine.

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:

 

 


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Loud and Proud: IQ pride playlist out now

The Pride takeover edition of the IQ New Music playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, is now live.

Launched last year, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents. Click here to read the inaugural Pride edition of IQ now.

The Loud and Proud (July) playlist features contributions from CAA, ICM, ITB, Paradigm Talent Agency, UTA, ATC, WME, Mother Artists, Primary Talent International, FMLY and Hometown Talent, each of which have picked several tracks apiece, showcasing some of their best queer touring artists.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below, or click here to catch up on the June playlist first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for the Loud and Proud (July) playlist is:

AgencyArtistSong
CAATodrick HallQueen
CAAJodie HarshNo Sleep
CAAMAY-AApricots
CAAMUNANumber One Fan
ICMTayla ParxDance Alone
ICMAmorphous, KehlaniBack Together
ICMdrumaqInsecurities
ICMTygapawFacety
ICMMarzzCountless Times
ITBAnnabel Allumordinary life
ITBBrandi CarlileThe Joke
ITBCherymListening to My Head
ITBDream NailsKiss My Fist
ITBHot MilkI Just Wanna Know What Happens When I'm Dead
ParadigmPabllo VittarModo Turbo
ParadigmLynksThis Is the Hit
ParadigmEzra FurmanI Can Change
ParadigmPerfume GeniusOn the Floor
Paradigmgirl in redSerotonin
UTABitch FalconGaslight
UTAJake Wesley RogersMomentary
UTAMadeline The PersonAs a Child
UTAPrincess NokiaIt's Not My Fault
UTASam LeeThe Tan Yard Side
ATCJoe & The ShitboysDrugs R'4 Kidz
ATCBeverly Glenn-CopelandEver New
ATCAlice LowLadydaddy
ATCALMAChasing Highs
ATCAnjimileMaker
WMEMaya Jane ColesRun to You
WMEJazmin BeanHello Kitty
WMECarla PrataCertified Freak
WMEserpentwithfeetFellowship
WMEKim PetrasHeart to Break
Mother ArtistsJoy Oladokunsorry isn't good enough
PrimaryRina SawayamaChosen Family
PrimaryRufus WainwrightGoing To A Town
PrimaryMoore KismetFlourish
PrimaryJoesefLoverboy
PrimaryMarika HackmanClaude's Girl
FMLYEliza LegzdinaEat Your Greenz
FMLYRalph TV4 U
FMLYDu BlondeAll The Way
FMLYLazy DayReal Feel
FMLYRome FortuneLovezone
Hometown TalentJerry PaperCholla
Hometown TalentAngel HazeBattle Cry

 


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Mayday! The IQ new music playlist is now live

The latest edition of IQ’s new music playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, is now live, showcasing some of the most exciting talent for May 2021.

Launched last summer, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents.

The May playlist features contributions from CAA, ICM Partners, ITB, Paradigm, UTA, ATC Live, WME, Mother Artists and Primary Talent, each of which have picked up to five tracks apiece showcasing some of their hottest touring artists.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below, or click here to catch up on the April playlist first.

Separated by agency office, the full track list for the May playlist is:

AgencyArtistSong
CAAStefflon DonCan't Let You Go
CAAJoe PFighting in the Car
CAAMod SunFlames
CAAJonah KagenBroken
ICM PartnersImanbekDancing on Dangerous
ICM PartnersTygapawRun 2 U
ICM PartnersGaidaaLet Me
ICM PartnersTanerelleMama Saturn's Galactica
ICM PartnersCharmaineDouble Dutch
ITBBartleby DelicatePlastic Flowers
ITBCherymKisses on my Cards
ITBHaunt The WoodsElephant
ITBLYRWinter Solstice
ITBThe Slow Readers ClubEverything I Own
ParadigmDom DollaPump the Brakes
ParadigmFred AgainDermot (See Yourself in my Eyes)
ParadigmHenjilaPaper Boy
ParadigmThe ClauseTime Of Our Lives
ParadigmTirzahSend Me
UTAMarthaGunnGiving in
UTAWalk Off the EarthAnthem
UTADirty HoneyGypsy
UTAAyron JonesSpinning Circles
UTAPendulumCome Alive
ATC LiveJuan WautersMonsoon
ATC LivePintyFound it
ATC LiveWu-LuTimes
ATC LiveCrumbBalloon
ATC LiveCassandra JenkinsCrosshairs
WMEOlivia RodrigoDéjà Vu
WMEJ Balvin, KhalidOtra Noche Sin Ti
WMEEric ChurchHeart
WMEKygoGone are the Days
WMEThomas RhettCountry Again
Mother ArtistsCMATI Don't Really Care For You
Mother ArtistsGrandma's HouseSmall Talk
PrimaryIndigo De SouzaTake Off Ur Pants
PrimaryCookiee KawaiiVibe (If I Back it Up)
PrimaryImanbekRoses (Remix)
PrimaryEnglish TeacherR&B
PrimaryEthan TaschHow are you

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Sally Dunstone joins Primary Talent International

Sally Dunstone, formerly of X-ray Touring, has joined London-based Primary Talent International as an agent, bringing artists including Grammy-nominated rapper Jack Harlow and Brit Awards Rising Star nominee Rina Sawayama.

Dunstone, one of IQ’s 2020 New Bosses, joined X-ray from Live Nation in 2014. Her roster also includes Kelly Lee Owens, Places and Faces, Maxo Kream and Lancey Foux.

“We are very excited to be welcoming Sally into the Primary Talent International family” says Primary Talent managing director Peter Elliott.

“Sally is an agent I have admired and wanted to work with for a long time”

“Sally is an agent I have admired and wanted to work with for a long time,” adds Matt Bates, director of Primary and head of international for parent company ICM Partners. “She has an exciting contemporary roster of clients and has a huge future ahead of her. We are thrilled to welcome her into the ICM/Primary family.”

Comments Dunstone: “What ICM and Primary have put together over the past year has not gone unnoticed in the concerts world, and I am excited to join the team with my talented roster of artists and keep the momentum going.”

 


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Steve Backman joins Matt Hanner’s Runway Artists

Independent UK booking agency Runway Artists has hired Steve Backman, formerly of Primary Talent International, as its first agent appointment.

Set up by former ATC Live agent Matt Hanner in the spring of 2020, Runway represents artists including Lanterns on the Lake, the Futureheads, Sleeper, Highasakite, Ned’s Atomic Dustband and Wyldest. It was one of the first of many new agencies to have launched in the UK since the start of the coronavirus crisis, being joined since by Ben Ward’s Route One Booking, Jon Ollier’s One Fiinix Live and Natasha Bent’s Mother Artists, among others.

Backman, who joins following a 19-year stint at Primary Talent, brings a roster that includes Emmy the Great, And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, Steve Lamacq, Gabriella Cilmi, the Bootleg Beatles, the Mission, Art School Girlfriend and Odina.

“It’s great that an agent of Steve’s pedigree had enough belief in what I’d started to want to come on board,” says Hanner. “We have a shared ethos and approach to the way we work with our artists, and I think we will benefit from working together.”

“We are the masters of our own destiny, and that is really freeing”

“It’s a chance for me to put my knowledge to something new, fresh and exciting that we have control of,” adds Backman. “We are the masters of our own destiny, and that is really freeing.”

“The independent agency world has ballooned over the last 12 months; there are some big players in it now, and there is a lot more scope to shake things up and work in a slightly different way,” continues Hanner, who says that having achieved financial backing, Runway Artists is looking to bring more agents on board in the near future.

“We have the freedom to push into areas where we might be able to offer more for our acts and benefit them in the long term. Different artists want different things from their careers, and we’re committed to delivering whatever it is they are trying to achieve, rather than feel we have to push every act into trying to fill arenas.

“It feels like a really exciting time to be putting a new company together. This is a serious proposition. We are ambitious and we are looking to grow over time.”

 


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Matt Bates named head of international for ICM Partners

Primary Talent International director Matt Bates has been named head of international and head of Europe for ICM Partners in a leadership reshuffle following the recent resignation of ICM’s head of worldwide concerts, Rob Prinz.

Prinz, who stepped down voluntarily to return to being a full-time touring agent for ICM, is succeeded by Mark Siegel, with Robert Gibbs becoming the agency’s head of music. The three new appointments were announced by Chris Silbermann, CEO of ICM Partners.

“Mark Siegel, Robert Gibbs and Matt Bates are universally respected within our agency and the music business at large,” says Silbermann. “Through their hard work and dedication to their clients and the team here at ICM, they epitomise the true meaning of leading by example.”

Elsewhere, Steve Levine remains co-head of worldwide concerts, while Peter Elliott continues as managing director of the UK’s Primary Talent, which joined forces with ICM last March. Scott Mantell remains co-head of ICM international, based in Los Angeles.

Siegel is a New York-based ICM partner who has been with the agency for more than 25 years. He was formerly head of music. Gibbs, a 14-year veteran of, and partner in, ICM was previously head of contemporary music.

“Mark Siegel, Robert Gibbs and Matt Bates are universally respected within our agency and the music business at large”

Bates has been in the business more than 20 years (15 of them with Primary) and remains on the London-based agency’s board, alongside Peter Elliott and Ben Winchester.

“We have empowered a talented, diverse and forward-thinking leadership team to best represent our clients and reap the rewards of the investments we have made in the live events business,” continues Silbermann. “We are all looking forward to a booming 2022 and beyond as the audience returns to experience the artists and concerts they love and have greatly missed.

“This diverse team combines the wisdom of experience with a forward-thinking, next-generation enthusiasm, giving our clients a dynamic leadership team and representation department built not only for success today, but into the future.”

Alongside the new appointments, ICM has established a new ‘Next Gen Concerts Leadership Committee’ designed to pave the way for the next generation of concert department leaders. It initially includes agents Jacqueline Reynolds-Drumm, Yves C. Pierre, Ari Bernstein and Mitch Blackman.

“I am extremely humbled and excited to be given the opportunity to step into a new role within ICM concerts,” comments Siegel. Chris Silbermann and Rob Prinz led the charge over the past year to grow our division and lay the foundation for ICM concerts to be a leader in the industry for years to come.

“The foundation Rob Prinz built in the concert division has left ICM in a formidable position from which to navigate the exciting new world of live music”

“We have created a talented, diverse, and forward-thinking leadership team who I am proud to work alongside in our commitment to best represent our incredible clients. They are the reason we strive every day to be better than yesterday, and I cannot think of a better group of agents, assistants and support staff who display their commitment and passion daily to that end.

“As I step into this new role, I do so knowing I am surrounded by an incredible team, including my partners Steve Levine, Rob Gibbs and Matt Bates, and I am eager to continue the work that has propelled this department forward. I am equally excited to work with Jacqui, Yves, Ari and Mitch as they step into an active leadership role. To Rob Prinz, my colleague and more importantly my friend, thank you for your tireless work and leadership, especially over the past year, which resulted in the tremendous growth of our department. I look forward to continuing to have you as a partner and a colleague for years to come.”

Adds Bates: “Since Primary joined with ICM 12 months ago, the support and vision I have seen from Chris Silbermann has been exceptional, which is reflected in the department’s growth and expansion. The foundation Rob Prinz built in the concert division has left ICM in a formidable position from which to navigate the exciting new world of live music, which is about to open up globally.

“I am looking forward to working alongside Mark Siegel and Rob Gibbs in their new roles and our incredible team of agents, who will lead ICM to the forefront of the live music business.”

 


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January rhythm and blues: New agency playlist

The January edition of IQ’s New Signings playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, goes live today with another serving of fresh new music ahead of the launch of IQ 95.

Launched in May for the June issue, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents.

The January playlist features contributions from CAA, ITB, Paradigm, UTA, ATC, Primary and WME, each of which have picked four or five tracks apiece featuring some of their most exciting new talent.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below – or click here to catch up on the December edition first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for January’s New Signings playlist is:

 

AgencyArtistSong
CAATemsDamages
CAAMunduBrag & Boast
CAAFana HuesIcarus
CAA19&YouRunnin'
CAADel Water GapHig Tops
ICMBaddieDylan & Dakota
ICMFlorence ArmanHome
ITBDream NailsLonely Star (Christmas Song)
ITBThe Hyena KillBleached
ITBDaytime TVSide Effects
ITBFeverHonesty
ITBLittle BarrieSteel Drum
ParadigmWorking Mens ClubJohn Cooper Clarke
ParadigmChloe MoriondoGirl on TV
ParadigmJoey MaxwellMy Self
ParadigmLynksBrand New Face
ParadigmFlowerkidMiss Andry
UTAChance The Rapper, Jeremih & ValeeAre U Live
UTADixie D’Amelio (feat. Wiz Khalifa)One Whole Day
UTATierra WhackFeel Good
UTAPeach Tree RascalsFumari
UTA4kGoldn (feat. iann dior)Mood
ATCOracle SistersThe Dandelion
ATCAltin GunOrdunun Dereleri
ATCBlack PumasChristmas will really be Christmas
ATCHello ForeverAnywhere is Everywhere
ATCJulia JacklinBaby Jesus is Nobody's Baby
PrimaryBad TunerSourire
PrimaryMatilda MannPaper Mache World
PrimaryKaty KirbyTraffic!
PrimaryPretty SickSuperstar
WMEInternet MoneyLemonade
WMEMiley Cyrus (feat. Dua Lipa)Prisoner
WME24KGLDNMood
WMEThe Weeknd (feat. Rosalia)Blinding Lights (Remix)
WMEAJRBang!

 


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Winter Wonderbands: December’s agency playlist

The December edition of IQ’s New Signings playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, goes live today with another serving of fresh new music ahead of the launch of IQ 95.

Launched in May for the June issue, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents.

The December playlist features contributions from CAA, ICM, ITB, Paradigm, UTA, ATC and Primary, each of which have picked four or five tracks apiece featuring some of their most exciting new talent.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below – or click here to catch up on the November edition first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for December’s New Signings playlist is:

AgencyArtistSong
CAAYDEStopped Buying Diamonds
CAAPriya RaguGood Love 2.0
CAACassowaryStarlife
CAABree RunwayATM
CAACole LCWestbrook
ICMKAMAUUMango
ICMCoi LeraySlide
ICMQTake Me Where Your Heart Is
ITBAnnaFast
ITBDead Poet SocietyCoDA
ITBDevonWhy Do We Wake Up? (Before The Good Bit)
ITBJuanita Stein1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
ITBLonely The BraveBright Eyes
ParadigmAddison GraceOverthink
ParadigmDo NothingGlueland
ParadigmProspaThe Thrill
ParadigmKokorokoBaba Ayoola
ParadigmToraCall Your name
UTABoybandTattoo
UTADenise ChailaChaila
UTApoutyfaceDeathwish
UTAmoa moaSpinning
UTAAlina PashDengi
ATCBlack Country New RoadScience Fair
ATCKaty J PearsonSomething Real
ATCSprintsManifesto
ATCKacy & Clayton, Marlon WilliamsArahura
ATCTim AtlasWallflower
PrimaryMiloeWinona
PrimaryJuly Jones2020 Girls
PrimaryIC3PEAKTRRST
PrimaryAll Time LowMonsters
PrimaryMoore KismetYou Should Run

 


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Pete Nash joins ICM Partners/Primary Talent

Respected New York-based booking agent Pete Nash has joined ICM Partners, becoming the latest addition to the US major agency’s recently formed International division, which incorporates the UK’s Primary Talent International.

British-born Nash most recently worked at WME, where he spent almost nine years booking artists including Alanis Morissette, Vince Staples, Duran Duran and Tegan and Sara in addition to his own roster.

Prior to joining WME he ran his own New York-based agency, which he formed after leaving legendary London-based outfit Helter Skelter. Spending 17 years as a Helter Skelter director, he represented artists such as Alicia Keys, Stevie Wonder, Blondie, the Fall and Suede. (ICM formerly owned the companies that become Helter Skelter; Nash’s ex-colleagues at the agency include X-ray’s Steve Strange and Pete Huffman, CAA’s Emma Banks and Mike Greek and K2’s John Jackson.)

Nash’s hiring – announced today (24 September) Rob Prinz, ICM’s head of worldwide concerts, and Primary Talent’s Matt Bates, ICM head of international – is the latest by ICM Partners International, the division formed with ICM’s effective acquisition of London’s Primary Talent in March. He follows former WME colleague Simon Clarkson, who joined ICM last month.

Both Nash and Clarkson will work closely with Primary Talent in London, say the agencies.

Nash – who will be based in ICM Partners’ New York office – brings artists including Kings of Leon, Pet Shop Boys, Regina Spektor, Travis, the Struts and Steve Winwood to ICM/Primary.

“The moves they have made to bolster their international footprint was the catalyst for me to make this move”

He says he’s “very excited to join an agency that is in growth mode. The moves they have made to bolster their international footprint was the catalyst for me to make this move.

“[I’m] looking forward to working closely with Rob Prinz and Matt Bates, who are longtime friends, and the teams at ICM and Primary.”

“I was trying to book acts off Pete long before I was ever an agent, so to be finally be able to work alongside him is a privilege,” says Bates, who is also a Primary director. “His experience in the international market is second to none, and his roster of incredible clients speaks for itself.

“I couldn’t wish for a more perfect addition on our team to help navigate the new exciting music landscape that we are entering into.”

In addition to New York and London, ICM – which is backed by US$150 million in private-equity investment – has offices in Los Angeles (headquarters) and Washington DC. It also holds a minority share in Albatros Agency, a Stockholm-based literary agency.

 


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