So, are you a Rock Star? On your way? Well, let’s talk a bit about things to look for in a band manager.
Band Managers do things like: pay your bills, invest your money, handle taxes and sometimes run the budget for your tours and shows. As you are building your awesome music catalog and brand, eventually you will find yourself in need of a Band Manager.
Band Managers, as with any Financial Person in charge of your money, will be acting on behalf of you.
So here are a couple suggestions to help you choose wisely.
What are you supposed to do? What are they supposed to do? How often are they supposed to do it? How will you know when they’ve done it? Will you get weekly/monthly/quarterly financial reports? Better yet, do you even know how to read financial reports? If not, you got some homework to do buddy. In other words, how transparent are they with how they intend to manage your financial affairs? If they are brushing off your concerns buyer beware.
2) Prior experience
Do they understand your industry? Do they understand finances in general? Do they have other clients like you? Do they speak to you in layman financial terms? If most of these questions aren’t answered I urge you to dig deeper into your potential candidate. No meeting is too long to be sure where your money will be going.
In their reports are they keeping a list of ALL the bills that are being paid out and to whom? Take heed of Bugsy Siegal. Bugsy the great visionary that he was didn’t have a handle on his finances. While building the Flamingo Casino here in Vegas he often paid again and again for the same stuff, like palm trees. His business ineptness lead to his murder. For you, it’s not that serious but it can mean the difference between Rock Star longevity and bankruptcy. Rock N Roll is littered with talent screwed over by those they trusted.
Do they have a financial designation? CFP®, CPA, EA, anything? Having a financial designation comes with extra study, experience, and hard work. It’s not the only criteria to base your decision on, but it’s important.
5) What does your gut say?
Do they feel weird? Do they look gummy (my friend Joceda’s word?) If they’re pushy, move on. It is important to be comfortable with the person handling your money.
The bottom line is know your stuff. David Lee Roth inserted a line in his contracts stating that there should be a bowl of M&Ms backstage, with all the brown M&Ms removed. Was he a Rock Star Diva? Clearly, but when he arrived at the venue he knew right away if the contract was read. I am not expecting you to be an expert in finances. I am only expecting you to make music that rocks and/or rolls, and I want to keep you around, so be diligent.
In other blog posts, I will be covering other pitfalls musicians should be aware of, but that day is not today.
If you have questions or want to tell me how great I am email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or hit me up on twitter @melrocksmoney.