If any reinforcement of the fact that the music industry continues to change beyond all recognition, meet Conor Maynard. The Brighton, England man got famous by covering songs and putting the videos/recordings on YouTube. Millions of people clicked his links, and now he’s an original recording artist with a massive fanbase.
And we’re not criticizing. The internet allows for that DIY ethic to seriously fly, and people with talent willing to put the hours in and really think about their approach can achieve a hell of a lot from their own bedroom.
“I always sang growing up, however, it was only after my voice broke, that’s when my more unique tone came out,” Maynard says. “At the time, I had no idea that I’d ever be into songwriting––I was recording covers because I didn’t know I was capable of writing my own material at that age.”
“I need a team around me.”
It really has worked for him and, while there are elements of luck involved, Maynard was very methodical in his approach to getting attention on YouTube with his covers and remixes.
“If I was going to cover or remix a song, it would be a song that was big at the time,” he says. “Then, I had to make sure that whatever I did, was as different as it could be. If I was going to sing a song by someone else, I would make sure that my version sounded completely different.”
That’s just smart, and now he’s dropping original material, such as recent singles “Not Over You” and “Hate How Much I Love You,” while his hard-earned fans are sticking around. His music is pure pop, and it’s earned him a deal with Warner. His A&R guy, Elias Christidis, says that they couldn’t not be impressed with the numbers he’s been getting online. Meanwhile, he believes that this is a golden period for pop.
“I think pop over the last few years has proven itself to be cutting edge,” Elias says. “I think the most exciting production, sounds and songs are in pop music at the moment.”
So in this new world, what are the benefits of being on a major label? Maynard says it’s all down to personal choice.
“It is so different now,” he says. “Back then, it was almost impossible to make it without the backing of a label. Now, people can go online and listen to whatever they want to listen to. It’s a lot easier for people to make it independently. But the labels still hold a lot of value, and there are some things that I’ll never be able to keep on top of. I need a team around me.”
Date Signed: Nov. 2, 2010
Label: Parlophone UK
Band Members: Conor Maynard
Type of Music: Pop
Management: Aaron Hercules, First Access Entertainment
Booking: Ryan Soroka, United Talent Agency
Legal: Internal - Jo Malthouse / External - Chloe Wright - Harbottle & Lewis
Publicity: Rick Gershon, Warner Records
A&R: Matt Meape - Parlophone UK