The biz's brightest new talents tell their stories. This week it's the turn of James Osgood, music coordinator at United Talent Agency.
How did you break into the industry?
I secured a six-month full-time internship at UTA within the classical ...
Some of Martin Bandier’s UK colleagues and partners pay tribute to the great man...
“Marty’s a mentor, a motivator and somebody you enjoy winning with. He’s sharp as a tack. Any bad deals I’ve done, he always remembers, but it’s done with humour and motivation. Marty had no reason, when I was a young, slightly club-crazed kid wandering around the New York office, to take any interest in me or listen to my ideas, but he’s always supported me. I’m leaving the company myself and, in this game, you’re always looking forward. But when you look back at what Marty’s achieved – buying Jobete, running EMI, building the No.1 music publisher – it’s pretty incredible.”GUY MOOT, OUTGOING UK MD & PRESIDENT, WORLDWIDE CREATIVE, SONY/ATV; INCOMING CO-CHAIR & CEO, WARNER/CHAPPELL
“I have worked for Marty for longer than anyone else in my career. I have learned more from him than anyone else and, most importantly, I have had more laughs with him than with anyone else. One of my colleagues once said that, if you stand near Marty, good things happen to you. A bit of the angel dust that has landed on him throughout his career lands on you, too. With his generosity and loyal support for those around him, that angel dust has landed on so many of us.” GUY HENDERSON, PRESIDENT, INTERNATIONAL, SONY/ATV
“Marty is recognised as a legend in publishing for good reason. He has a true appreciation for the value of the song and the importance of the songwriter in a world where the focus is more often on sound recordings and artists. That’s why he’s been so successful.” ANTONY BEBAWI, EVP DIGITAL & SOCIETY RELATIONS, INTERNATIONAL & UK, SONY/ATV
“Marty is a true icon, an entrepreneur and pioneer of the music publishing business. I am very lucky to have worked closely with him for the past seven years. He has relentlessly fought for songwriters in the constantly changing musical landscape and working with him has been a complete honour and a total privilege.” DAVID VENTURA, UK HEAD OF A&R, SONY/ATV
“Marty will be missed at Sony/ATV – he has always been a presence in Ed’s career and always made time for us. His knowledge, wisdom, and some great stories, were always gratefully received.” STUART CAMP, ED SHEERAN’S MANAGER
“I’ve known Marty since the 1980s. He helped drive the Cannes Agreement, the start of a new relationship between publishers and collection societies. I’ve worked for him at EMI and Sony/ATV, but it always felt like I was working with him and the great team he built.” WILLIAM BOOTH, DEPUTY MD, UK, SONY/ATV
Not only did Can’t Get You Out Of My Head give Kylie Minogue her biggest hit so far, it also became one of the most iconic pop songs of all time. Here, la-la-la-legendary songwriter Cathy Dennis recalls creating a phenomenon...
I always feel that Can’t Get You Out Of My Head shouldn’t have been the hit that it was – it was written in about two-and-a-half hours. There have been lots of songs that have been easy to write over the years, but it was probably one of the quickest, if not the quickest, sessions I’ve ever done in my life.
It was a very fluid session with Rob [Davis, formerly of Mud] at his house in Epsom. I remember Rob’s wife at the time, Christina, was making a fuss of both of us making sure that we had what we wanted, like nuts and seeds, but it was just for a couple of hours of writing. It’s a great example of when you’ve got two people in the room and they give each other creative freedom, that’s what can happen.
Rob is a guitarist and he had some chord ideas, so I started jamming around that. I had an idea in my head about Bronski Beat for some reason, so that’s where I was coming from melodically – although lyrically there was no reference to that at all. Then I had an idea for the, well, I call it the bassline, which was a kind of Kraftwerk idea which I played on the Korg Triton.
I remember going for a wee, and it was quite an inspirational one! I came back and a lot of lyrics fell into place quite quickly. Then we worked on the second verse together and then I came up with the, ‘la, la, la’ thing just before I was leaving and that was it.
Initially, I loved Can’t Get You Out Of My Head, but I thought, ‘Oh, maybe I’ll just release it myself’, because I was still kind of interested in releasing music. We sent it to Sophie Ellis-Bextor and it got turned down for whatever reason, probably just by her label. Then it was [Dennis’ then manager] Simon Fuller’s idea to send it to Kylie. Jamie [Nelson, who co-signed Minogue to Parlophone] loved it and they said it’s going to be the album’s first single. I thought, ‘They don’t know what they’re talking about, it’s going to be a terrible mistake’ [laughs]. But it wasn’t.
Can’t Get You Out Of My Head was written on its own and then we got back together after that to do another one, Come Into My World, which was equally great, because we got a Grammy for that one.
I co-produced Can’t Get You Out Of My Head with Rob. Kylie was in the studio at the same time – I didn’t have any expectations and I don’t think she did either. We recorded some of it in Universal’s writing room and we put the finishing touches to it in a studio in Hampstead. It was a really cheap production.
The only way to template your song initially is to sing it yourself, and producers don’t normally volunteer themselves for that kind of thing. I’m not saying that I enjoy vocaling – unless it’s a song that I’m really into – but I did background [vocals] on the finished version. When Rob and I produced it, we kept my backing vocals in but it doesn’t sound exactly the same [as the original Dennis recording] at all. I’ve sung on most of my big hits, I think maybe people like the sound of my voice in the background or something. I’ve done backgrounds on the finished versions of Toxic, I Kissed A Girl and some of my other big hits.
Kylie put her own stamp on it vocally. My voice doesn’t sound like hers, but she brought the same ambience to the production. The lead vocal is very different. She did an amazing video and did the song justice, vocally. She’s a very hard worker, everyone always says how lovely she is and she really is.
I’m a really free spirit and I love to make music that mirrors the kind of person I am, which is why I like the song so much. As a song, it’s not sticking to any stereotypes. I guess in that respect I would say that it’s one of my proudest works, just because it is totally uninhibited.
Publisher Sony/ATV/UMPG Writers Rob Davis, Cathy Dennis Release Date 08.09.01 Record label Parlophone Total UK sales (OCC) 1,342,820