General Question

blakemasnor's avatar

How do I become an AR rep.?

Asked by blakemasnor (323points) August 25th, 2008

I am very eager to begin a career in the music industry and would like to know how to get involved. If you have any information about an internship or something of that nature I would appreciate a lot.

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13 Answers

sndfreQ's avatar

Although there is no formal education for that specific job (Artist and Repertoire), in most cases, reps come from a couple of backgrounds:

-artist, producer, or other creative area dealing with production; also have a vast knowledge of music (broad), and a narrow expertise in one or more genres of music;

-business and marketing degree, and management experience either managing artists or working in music or media publishing.

Additionally, A&R reps have to be savvy of the local and regional music scene where they will be situated, and a good instinct is to move to those regions and become embedded in that scene. A&R reps do a lot of networking and connecting with managers of bands, and promoters of clubs and events. That’s almost a prerequisite for that line of work-including attending events and showcases where aspiring talent perform.

Another thing you can do to research this is to read one of the many music industry books that describe the creative and business/management structures, especially in this very rapidly shifting period in the industry. A good primer would be the Donald Passman book “All you need to know about the music business” (title may be incorrect, but the author name is right; he is a well-known attorney in the music business).

Lastly, a lot of A&R’s make it because of their business savvy and “street smarts.”. You should consider if those areas are srtengths for you. There are many areas if the music business beside A&R, and if you take some time to read one of those primers, you may see where your talents and aptitudes align.

Good luck and feel free to PM me if you have any other questions :)

sndfreQ's avatar

One more thing-often, reps start out in the business interning at radio stations, working under promoters, or interning at record labels. Those jobs often are low-to-no wage, but if you work for a productive and reputable company, you will gain insight by way of helping out higher ups on projects and promotional campaigns. Major market radio stations also take on interns to work on “street teams” to promote the station, but as a component of that work, get invited to work at industry events. Several of my audio students do these gigs in the summer during their break and come back to school with a lot of stories of meeting artists, managers, producers, etc. Just remember to have a youthful energy and appearance (outgoing, not too crazy, but lean on the “hip” side), and you’ll have a very good chance of getting into these opportunities (also, you should be the type of person not afraid of long hours and being able to commit yourself 100 percent to your job; difficult to do if you have family obligations or are preoccupied with other priorities).

jkainz's avatar

audio students…

Where do you teach?

sndfreQ's avatar

In L.A. Ca. See profile.

jkainz's avatar

well I guess I shouldve checked that first. I’m doing the bachelors program
For recording arts at full sail. I’m in my 9th

sndfreQ's avatar

Right on-how do you like that school? I know on the production side they have a pretty impressive setup.

jkainz's avatar

yeah it intense but I have learned alot. I came from more of a film background so when I started everything was kinda new to me. But I now understand what everyone is talking about. I mean, I’m sitting in a room right now with 25 pro tools rigs and some midi rack gear at each station. The amek 9098i was a sweet console to learn and so was the ssl. They have two of each of those. And some of the new c24 set ups. They keep growing it’s weird watching them blow up

sndfreQ's avatar

Sounds like a lot of money going into those systems…those D-Command systems are pretty nice. Agreed-9098i is the sickness! I studied on one when I was in college (CalArts a long time ago). Also have used SSL 9000D series console and studied on 4000s. sweet stuff that (still) delivers uncompromised quality. Sounds like you’re getting some good experience.

I’m teaching students Logic Studio and Final Cut Studio workflows primarily, but also have a D-Command in the facility driving and HD3 rig. Good stuff but expensive to upkeep! I’m leaning toward Apple sw lately, as things aren’t looking too bright for Avid/Digi (word on street is that Avid is going downhill financially and days numbered?...)

With your experience and skill set, you should be able to get work in Miami, Atlanta, Nashville, NYC, L.A.; don’t rule out the possibility of doing post-related jobs, especially in gaming and in multimedia…L.A. has a lot of opportunities if you know how to look.

jkainz's avatar

Yeah I worked on the 9000J series. I want to do post pretty badly but it looks like I’m not gonna get to that point for awhile.

Yeah they go over logic a little bit here and the same with nuendo. But primarily it’s all pro tools which I think is a mistake because I love logic and nuendo. I have been screwing around in melodyne latley as well

sndfreQ's avatar

Nice…melodyne has some great tools/toys. You should get into Logic Studio; there is a move afoot in industry as of late to push that system in post and music production. You can check out Apple’s site for a wall of musicians, composers, and sound designers who are jumping on the bandwagon. It’s a real “Swiss army knife” of sorts for audio and MIDI applications. In many cases, my students aren’t even finishing in PT anymore; they port the Waves plugs into Logic as it’s robust enough to handle the crunching; If you run TDM, it really flies on that system. A lot of DJs are also getting into real-time control of that system as well (playing along to the track). Ableton Live is also good for that.

You should (when you get a chance) also check out MetaSynth (google), although it’s kind of an old program, it has a really interesting visual interface-basically you can “paint” sound with it! Cool stuff.

Cheers buddy-gotta run (isn’t it like 1:00am over there!?) you’re a night owl! Take care.

jkainz's avatar

haha I just got out of class:p

shutjasmineup's avatar

I can’t wait to graduate, so I can become an A&R rep.

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