Our Favorite Signing Stories • 2013

Label: Lava/Universal Republic
Management:  Scott Maclachlan
Contact: [email protected]
Web: http://lorde.co.nz
A&R: Jason Flom

What’s so remarkable about Lorde’s signing story is that this young New Zealand artist—discovered several years ago when an A&R scout heard a recording of her middle school talent show—was given plenty of time to develop her precocious gifts. “I didn’t have any real desire to be taking music seriously, because I was 12, you know,” Lorde told Music Connection in our first interview with her. Now fortunate to have assembled a team of pros to help guide and drive her career, Lorde’s future looks extremely bright. Not only is she the first female in 17 years to hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Alternative Radio Airplay chart with her smash single “Royals,” she set the record for the longest run while doing so. For more about Lorde and where she’s headed since the release of her debut album Pure Heroine, see our exclusive feature interview beginning on page 38.

He's My Brother She's My SisterRT_WP


He's My Brother
She’s My Sister
Label: Park The Van Records
Management: Geoff Sherr / SQE (Street Quality Entertainment), 323-378-5973
Booking: Jared Flamm / Danny Rose Agency, 818-396-5672
Publicity: Brooke Black Just-Olesen, [email protected], 323-456-3490
Web: http://hesmybrothershes mysister.com
A&R: Zach Fischel

Artists are most responsive to a label if they see the label’s passion for their music. That commitment is more important than money. Folk-rock outfit He’s My Brother She’s My Sister—the name was derived from the siblinghood of founding members Robert Kolar and his sister Rachel—had considered a number of labels before deciding on Santa Monica, CA’s Park The Van Records (PTV). The factors that went into that choice were many, but none more important than the responsiveness and general positive feeling conveyed by the label.

“PTV came on very early,” recalls guitarist Robert. “We’d been looking at labels like ANTI-, Glassnote and Merge [Records]. PTV was definitely there; they were responsive. Some of the other labels, the way they handled it was kind of disrespectful. So we went with PTV and we haven’t looked back. We’re constantly one of their priorities; they’re always pushing different opportunities our way. These guys believe in us.”


Arch Tha Boss
Publishing Company: Imagem Music
Publicity: dawn@ thepresshouse.com
Web: @archthaboss
A&R: Tunde Balogun & Sean Famoso

“We had a few talks, and they flew me down to Atlanta, and I liked what I saw, so I decided to go with it. I guess they heard the buzz about ‘Snapbacks and Tattoos.’” Producer Arch Tha Boss is talking about the Driicky Graham track he produced, which went gold last year, and how he caught the interest of publishing company Imagem Music. Arch’s contract—his first with a publishing company—is for three years. Each month, he gets a roster of artists needing production work, chooses whatever artists he wants and makes as many beats as he can. Whether a producer is self-made or looking for a publishing deal, Arch says, “Work with up-and-coming artists. Find someone to be your Snoop Dogg or your Dr. Dre. Come up with them, and if they happen to blow, you’ll go right along with them.”


Jonny Fritz
Label: ATO Records
Management: Christine Stauder/Red Light Management, 646-292-7400
Booking: Andrew Colvin, [email protected]
Publicity: Angie Carlson / Propeller Publicity, [email protected]
Web: http://jonnyfritz.com
A&R: Jon Salter & Kirby Lee / ATO Records

Jonny Fritz deftly spins a tale along the lines of his songwriting heroes like Tom T. Hall, Michael Hurley, Jerry Reed, Jerry Jeff Walker and Roger Miller, songs that have observational humor but are also loaded with hefty amounts of truth. It is a skill he’s developed after nearly a decade on the road. MC appreciates the evident wisdom this artist showed when deciding to sign with ATO for 2013 full-length release, Dad Country. “I had my heart set on ATO,” says Fritz. “But I didn’t care how much money or political clout they had. ATO made it clear to me that they cared about the music, but wanted to wait until they had the time to do it right.” When the time finally came and the contract was put before him, Fritz signed it—in gravy—at Arnold’s Country Kitchen in Nashville, TN.

Rozzi Crane Pic2_RT_WP

Rozzi Crane
Label: 222 Records
Management: Jordan Feldstein / Career Artist Management, [email protected]
Publicity: Carleen Donovan, Samara Shwidock / Press Here
Web: http://rozzicrane.com
A&R: Chris Maguire

This young pop artist blew us away with her performance at last spring’s BMI Pop Awards banquet in Los Angeles, so we made a point to learn more about her. Crane told us she had enrolled at the Popular Music Program at the USC Thornton School of Music and decided to attend classes while pursuing her musical aspirations. She immediately formed a band with classmates, eventually tackling the city’s circuit. She also earned background vocal duties for high-profile acts like Don Henley on the recommendation of her professors. But, it was a class shared with former Phantom Planet member, Jacques Bartbau, that was most impactful, as the duo soon began working with Phantom Planet’s Sam Farrar. Crane would sing on the demos that the team recorded and one of these found its way to Maroon 5’s manager, Jordan Feldstein. Crane then met with Feldstein and discussed the idea of working together in the future. And as Crane puts it, “A couple of days later, I received an email from [Maroon 5’s Adam Levine], who basically said he didn’t have a label, but would love to start one if I would be on it.”

The Filthy Souls Signing Story_WP

The Filthy Souls
Label: DrillDown Entertainment Group
Publicity: Katie Anne Ellsweig/Big Machine Agency, [email protected]
Web: http://thefilthysouls. tumblr.com
A&R: Paul Palmer/DrillDown Entertainment

Before signing with DrillDown, Filthy Souls’ vocalist-guitarist Dave Green spent a lot of time trying to get a music career off the ground in England. But no labels came calling until Green relocated to Los Angeles, CA. There the lead singer did a radio interview with a friend who knew Paul Palmer, known for working with Rock Mafia and co-founding Trauma Records. “My friend who had done the radio interview said, ‘I have a guy you should meet.’ He took me down to a studio in Venice. Paul asked me to play some songs, and that was it.” Green says if he hadn’t moved to California and been discovered by DrillDown, he doesn’t know what he would be doing in England. “In L.A., you’re in the heart of everything. Everyone you meet is involved in music or entertainment.”

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