This week, Sof Petrides tells Music Week about her Drop The Ego management company and reveals how to maximise artist relationships...
How did you get into music?
“A lot of hustling, networking and just showing face! I started getting into music at 16 while at East London Arts and Music college. I realised I wanted to be a manager and find new music, so I started hitting up A&Rs with new artists and music, just to get on their radar. After lots of networking, I started growing my connections and asking to work for them for free. Whenever there was an opportunity to be at a show, afterparty or event, I made sure I was there with one of my friends to graft and grow my connections, whilst obviously having fun. There were a few people who gave me a lot of their time – love to Lay Lewis [Various Artists Management] and Sean Holbrook [Toolroom] for helping me.”
What defines your strategy?
“Perseverance, structure and letting the music speak for itself. If the music is good enough, it’ll move and open doors, which is beneficial for all. Also, people is a big one for me. You can’t get anywhere in music alone, so I make sure to have good people around me that I know will give me their honest opinion or some love and direction when needed. Shout-out to John Woolf.”
You can’t get anywhere in music alone
How do you get the best out of your relationships with artists?
“Mutual love and respect and always being on a level with them, so they know you’re in their corner. Managing artists is hard work, especially when you wake up on a day you’re not 100%, but it’s about having people on your roster who care for you as much as you care for them. On my roster I’ve got Leyma, Jimothy Lacoste and Just Banco. I manage all three of them very differently because I’ve got to know them and what vibe they’re on musically. I can adapt to suit them. I have a lot of time for them and I know it’s the same the other way round.”
What’s been the biggest surprise about the industry so far?
“Not everyone is as bad as you may think. I got warned a lot early on to watch out for people because they would be difficult to work with. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had my fair share of tricky people, but the love and consideration people show to one another is so encouraging and nice to work with. On difficult days it’s what keeps me going. I have a lot of love for those people.”
And your pet peeve?
“When artists copy each other’s creative. Stay true to your own artistic direction, it’ll benefit you in the long run and make you stand out. And in general, odd socks! It just throws me off. No shade to anyone who wears them, I just can’t hack it!”
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