It’s important to note that A&R’s also rely heavily on referrals from established bands, record label scouts, friends and relatives of industry executives, reputable producers, managers, attorneys, and publishing companies as well. In other words their friends and networking.
Putting your music smack dab in the middle of the A&R’s radar screen — is what it’s all about. Making a good impression while your there usually renders a record deal. A&R’s have a great deal of responsibility in turning a dime for the labels they represent, and ultimately it justifies their career position and reputation. For this reason, A&R reps often follow new trends, look for “sure things” or wait to see what other A&R reps at other labels are pursuing. In other words Marketability. But regardless of what trends are in place, there are specific traits and skill sets that A&R’s look for when evaluating a new band or artist.
A&R’s have a great deal of responsibility in turning a dime for the labels they represent. Ultimately it justifies their reputation and career positions. In other words money. Do you think a successful A&R s going to invest his reputation into something that does not possess all the trademarks of success? Not a chance. There are many traits that A&R representatives look for in a band or artists to justify their signing power. Below are some more in depth things they are on the look out for.
Does this band or artist possess talent in some form?
Do they possess “Buzz Factor.”
Do their songs have Hit Potential
Do they have a good live draw & a solid live presentation?
Do they have a good work ethic, drive and commitment?
Do they possess a fresh image, look, & sound?
Are they youthful (preferably between the ages of 15-25)
Do they possess a strong local Fan Base
Is this music marketable and compatible with most recent trends?
100,000 song (minimum) downloads on MY Space?
Can I sell this music on a massive scale?
Can I sell this band to my label next week?
Are they staying busy with an aggressive tour and gig schedule
A good “Story” or “Angle”
Strong web Presence with photos, videos, etc.
No overwhelming debt, personal or professional commitments, or responsibilities
A dash of Mystery
Stands out from the rest
Possesses sex appeal. (eyes and ears)
Been doing all of the above for at least a year
By: Cyrus Rhodes