Music Connection's Favorite Signing Stories of 2016

MC's Favorite Signing Stories of 2016

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Ruth B
Date Signed: July 2015
Label: Columbia Records
Band Members: Ruth B, vocals, piano.
Management: Marc Offenbach, Mark Cunningham - Red Light Management
Booking: N/A
Legal: Elliott Groffman, Rob Cohen - Carroll Guido & Groffman
Publicity: christina.hankin@sonymusic.com
Web: ruthbofficial.com
A&R: Justin Eshak - Columbia Records

Sure, you can post some of your performances on Youtube, but are you prepared if record labels come knocking on your door with serious interest? We’re impressed by young artist Ruth B who remained extremely levelheaded, despite having to evaluate such glamorous offers without benefit of industry experience: “I went with the label that I thought understood my music best,” she says. “[Columbia Records] really got my vision of what kind of music I want to make and how I want to get it out there.” As a signed artist, Ruth B’s career trajectory––thanks to singles such as “Lost Boy” and “Superficial Love,” and by taking advantage of top–notch studios and producers––has shown a steady rise and continues to gather steam.

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The Strumbellas
Date Signed: Jan. 6, 2016
Label: Glassnote Records
Band Members: Simon Ward, vocals, acoustic guitar; David Ritter, piano, percussion, vocals; Jeremy Drury, drums, percussion; Isabel Ritchie, violin, vocals; Jon Hembrey, electric guitar; Darryl James, bass.
Management: Joanne Setterington - Indoor Recess, Inc.
Booking: Windish Agency; Paradigm
Talent Agency
Legal: Taylor Klein Oballa
Publicity: resnick@glassnotemusic.com
Web: thestrumbellas.ca
A&R: Daniel Glass

Show business is not for faint–hearted introverts. The Strumbellas’ Simon Ward, for example, sent over–the–top emails to entice prospective (now current) manager Joanne Setterington to attend a Strumbellas show. He emailed a wacky pledge to eat a whole bottle of horseradish. She attended, and was wowed. It was this kind of forward energy that propelled the band to a meeting with Glassnote Records founder Daniel Glass, which eventually sealed the deal. Through it all, however, Ward’s positive and outgoing disposition––mirrored by the Strumbellas’ infectious sing–along hit “Spirits”––has encouraged the sextet to move ahead while making all the right moves: “Relationships mean everything,” he states. “I’m trying to make friends with everybody, it doesn’t matter who. … Put it all out there [and] don’t be shy—get people’s attention.”

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Lukas Graham
Date Signed: Oct. 31, 2013
Label: Warner Bros. Records
Band Members: Lukas Graham Forchhammer, vocals; Kasper Daugaard, keyboard; Magnus Larsson, bass; Mark Falgren, drums.
Management: Kasper Faerk, Lasse Siegismund - Then We Take The World
Booking: Kasey McKee - CAA
Publicity: Jaime.rosenberg@wbr.com
Web: LukasGraham.com
A&R: N/A

Lukas Graham, whose single “7 Years” became a viral sensation, voiced a few simple (yet unwavering) requests during his first encounter with Warner Bros. Records Chairman/CEO Cameron Strang: “I want time to settle my record, to meet new writers and producers and experiment with my sound. Most of all, I want to build a team I know I can trust.” Warner agreed to help nurture the young artist, but would only go so far. “When Warner didn’t want to pay for something, I went and paid for it. So Warner could see that I put my own trust and heart into it, I bankrupted myself twice. They eventually put in more effort and money and rewarded me for investing.”

While Graham understands “the corporate beast wants money,” he also values the power of working to achieve a common goal: “I try to bond and connect with everyone from top to bottom. If you’re not a likable guy, they don’t give a shit about working with you.”

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