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Need some questions answered
Old 25th January 2013
  #1
Lives for gear
 
liv4ree's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Need some questions answered

Hey guys. I have a question that I need some pro's to answer. Pro's defined as People that are making a living in the music business. You all know who you are..
First off. I've been a singer/songwriter/performer, country/folk music most of my life. Not full time as I never had the guts to give up stability.
My oldest son who's 26 has been into the rap music scene for about 15 years.
He is well known in our for his beats, his skills as a songwriter, and most definitely as a producer.
So here's my question. His group has been involved with a Manager for about a year to a year and a half. No real contract. His group (there are 3 of them) plays about 3 shows per month. Not big shows. We'll say 200 people.
They headline these shows. Gotta ad that there is apparently a huge difference between this genre of music, and mine. When my trio plays a show, it's a 2 to 3 hour show. Apparently standard procedure with the rap genre is 2 or 3 maybe 6 songs for an entire show. There are typically 3 to 6 different rappers performing. Most of these performers pay to play and my sons group which headlines most shows either play for free or might get 100.00 to 150.00. They sometimes sell cd's and t-shirts at their shows. Not really sure who's getting that money. Unless they open for a rapper who was big say in the 90's. Then they play for free.
My sons groups manager recently opened a recording studio, about a 30,000 dollar investment which really isn't much. I know because I have a studio myself. So the manager will call my son last minute, have him drive 80 miles round trip to do a beat or whatever for someone at the studio. My son will spend say 4 hours there, and the guy will pay him 20.00 to 40.00 dollars. If my son does this 3 or 4 days per week, he might pay him 100.00 to 150.00.
My son is at wits end as he is really good at what he does. He actually does the beats at our place, and brings them there to the studio.
My son doesn't work a regular job as this manager keeps telling him that once the studio opens, he'll pay him 175.00 to 300.00 per week as he'll be there full time.
Now back to my trio. We play out a couple of times per month. We get 225.00 to 350.00 per show. If we book through an agent, he or she gets 10%. This to me is the norm, and what my son is dealing with is not such a good deal.
My son has met with some really heavy hitters in the past year. MTV reps, and so on. People like what he's doing.
I'm looking for some professional advice here. Thanks in advance guys..
Old 25th January 2013
  #2
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Sounds like your boy is getting hosed.
Old 25th January 2013
  #3
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
It doesn't sound too bad except for the whole driving out for 80 miles.
Old 25th January 2013
  #4
Lives for gear
 
liv4ree's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Thanks...
Old 25th January 2013
  #5
Lives for gear
 
bgrotto's Avatar
Quote:
My son doesn't work a regular job as this manager keeps telling him that once the studio opens, he'll pay him 175.00 to 300.00 per week as he'll be there full time.
You and your son realize that at best ("best" meaning he's being paid the maximum $300 for working the usual "full time" 40hrs/week), this means $7.50/hr, right? As a point of reference, when we need our interns or assistants for a gig, we pay em between $100 and $150 per day, which was the same rate I was paid per day when I was first starting out.

Also, "full time" at a studio tends to mean a LOT more hours than your average 9-5. This kid is getting shafted big time. And from the sound of it, the studio owner guy is shady. I wouldn't count on him for a second. Your son would be better off finding new management and a new studio run by decent folks.
Old 25th January 2013
  #6
Lives for gear
 
3rd Degree's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
How does the manager make money? It seems strange to me that a manger wouldn't want a better situation if he's getting 10% or similar.

Almost every rapper I know will expect more than $100 or close to that if they are playing for 200 people.

Same with the beats, I don't really understand if he has a market why he is doing things for under at least a few hundred dollars.

Does your son feel able to branch off and set up some things himself? If he is not reliant on a manager for instrumentals, he could easily be making 10x that. Same with shows, if he starts setting up his own gigs, I would imagine that he could make a lot more.

Going back to the manager. It seems there is a problem their. You son, quite frankly, isn't making enough money to be appealing to a manager. Hopefully he isn't pocketing a lot more money than your son knows about. The other thing could be that he has another income source and really doesn't care about the money, it's just for fun really. Either are obviously not going to be all that helpful.

If it's only been a short time of him being a manager, he may just be going for mass exposure which can be a good route to go. If it continues for a long time, it's no good and he needs to move on.

Either way, those numbers don't really add up if he is getting consistant work. Shows may be hard to make money from but the beats are not, and it sounds like he is in a place to start building his own clients. Even if he feels the manager has opportunities that are untapped, he needs to have a serious discussion and either do some things on his own without paying the manager a % or have a plan on where this is going.
Old 25th January 2013
  #7
Gear Addict
 
jeffgoobs's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Objectively, from the information provided, it seems that your son is getting taken advantage of. Maybe it's time for him to formulate some type of contract. Either way, the manager sounds shady-at-best to me.

Best of luck,
Goobs
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