Our first Rising Star of 2021, in association with The Music Market, is Sony Music UK international marketing assistant Bre McDermott-King. Read her music industry story so far...
Where did you get your start in the industry?
“I’ve been jumping around the music industry ever since I finished my two years at The BRIT School back in 2013. I studied music there as a vocalist and keys player, and although I loved contributing creatively, I was just as intrigued by the business side. So I did internship upon internship, work experience upon work experience in absolutely everything: live, production, video, performance, digital marketing, music technology, radio, PR... You name it. I studied music industry management at the University Of Hertfordshire to put some credibility behind my experiences and then landed an internship at Sony Music UK. And, well, I’ve never looked back since.”
What’s been the biggest lesson so far?
“Although the industry obviously focuses on music, its other priority is people. It’s a relationship game. From the relationships you have with your team, to those you have with other industry execs, to the ones you have with consumers. Genuine rapport is such an asset. So I’ve learned to be a good, hard-working and present person and to be intentional about building solid relationships. The quality of work is second to none if you get that right.”
My priority is the next generation
Tell us your best music business story...
“That would have to be curating the first ever Black History Month celebration for Sony Music UK back in 2018. Being able to bring my identity and culture into my workplace and then to combine it with music was so powerful. I spent so long looking through Sony’s rich history with black music legends. Being able to commemorate them while also celebrating the new wave of black talent was life-changing. During our closing event, a guest told me that we actually made history during Black History Month. How awesome is that?”
Name the most exciting part of your job...
“The boundlessness of it all. Who knows where music is going next? And, specifically, with music creation, to think you have these 12 notes and a couple of octaves, and millions of ideas have come from that, and there’s still probably a billion more out there. I often think about the kids of the next century, studying trap, drill or Afrobeats and writing essays on it like I had to about Romanticism (which is my favourite movement!).”
How do you want to impact the industry?
“My priority is making the next generation of black girls and boys know that we belong in front and behind the camera, on and off stage, in the office building as both executives and presidents, but as clients and artists too. We don’t have to just be the consumer, or the worker. We can be the owner, the leader and the chair(wo)man as well. I’d like to think that when I eventually throw in the towel, my career path would serve as an inspiration and testimony to black British excellence within the music industry.”
BRE'S RECOMMENDED TRACK:
Browse the very latest music industry jobs on the Music Week jobs page.