Berklee today

JUN 2015

Berklee today is the official alumni publication of Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. It is a forum for contemporary music and musicians.

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Summer 2015 29 Betty Who has had a lot of success, what's happening with your other artists? We've been working with Vérité since last summer, and things are moving quickly for her. She had an EP come out toward the end of 2014 that got a lot of buzz in the press and lots of live streams from Spotify and SoundCloud. She recently completed her frst tour on the East Coast with an appearance at South by Southwest. Another act, Coin, is an indie pop band, and they just did a bunch of live dates with Passion Pit. Then there's Peter Thomas ['13] who has written songs for Betty Who. He's been behind the scenes as a writer and producer. The dynamic between Pete and Betty is special and part of why she's been success- ful. He was also part of the writing and production for Hilary Duff's recent single "Sparks." That was big for him. But while he works a lot behind the scenes, he is interested in doing more as a public-facing artist. Does New Torch help its artists connect with other artists for tours and collaborations? Part of our responsibilities involve reaching out to manag- ers, agents, and labels to fnd other artists to pair with our artists for cowriting or doing a tour together. We are try- ing to put creative individuals together in a way that will make sense, get a certain demographic excited, and ulti- mately make money for the artists so that they can build their careers. Ethan and I are trying to make more collabo- rations within our roster. This summer Betty Who and Coin will do a tour together. Is it your goal to get your artists to major labels? For an artist like Betty Who, there is potential for her to be a massive pop star. A major label can get her to that point because they have the infrastructure, connections, and money. That's not to say an indie label can't do that, but for Betty's musical direction, a major makes the most sense for her. Some of our alternative artists may not fare well with a major label because they may not be trying to have a massive radio hit. Many labels are looking for radio hits and if an artist never writes a song that the label feels is radio friendly, the label will drop them. There are plenty of pros and cons for deciding whether an artist should go with a major or a small label. It's all about what is the best ft for the artist. You also never want to try to jump to something that an artist isn't ready for. There can be disasters if you force things too soon and your artist gets negative feedback in the press. It may not be the artist's fault if their live show wasn't ready and something goes wrong on the late-night TV show you've booked them for. That can make people think they aren't a good live band when in fact it's a growing process and they weren't ready yet. So, you can't just jump to a higher level and expect that everything will be great. What is on the horizon for New Torch? As we look toward the rest of the year, we will stay focused on taking our artists to the next level. Then we will look toward 2016 and keep things growing.

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