In the latest edition of Music Week we proudly present this year’s expanded Music Week Women In Music Awards Roll Of Honour. Here we speak to JD Management founder Jackie Davidson...
How do you feel about joining the Music Week Women In Music Roll Of Honour?
“Over the years there have been so many of my friends and peers that have received this honour so I am delighted to be amongst them.”
How do you look back on your early years getting into the industry?
“I am so fortunate to say that I’ve worked in an industry that I love over the last couple of decades. As a black woman paving my journey, I have had my fair share of challenges and hurdles. I’ve seen and experienced the racial and gender inequalities that are still unfortunately prevalent in the business today, and as a result I was denied opportunities. But I never let it slow me down or stop me from striving for my dreams. I used it as ammo to build up enough determination to work harder.”
Did you have a mentor or role model who helped you at that stage?
“Throughout my career, I’m grateful enough to have met some real pioneers in their fields. I’m even more thankful that I now get to call these people my friends. While there are too many names to list, I would like to shine a spotlight on two powerful black women in particular. Vivian Scott Chew, who taught me the power of staying true to your vision, and Dyana Williams, who taught me the importance of my voice and how it can inspire those I meet along my journey.”
What advice would you offer young female executives about enjoying a successful career in music?
“There are a few pieces of advice I would offer, so here are some of the key ones that I’d like to share. Let your passion, knowledge and skillset guide you through any challenging situation, big or small. It could be that you’re one of a few women at the table, but don’t let the male presence in the room intimidate you or cause you self-doubt. The ideas that you have might just be the vital missing piece from the project in question, and if you get a gut feeling about something, share with whoever needs to hear it. Work on getting a mentor within the industry. Someone who you can lean on and establish a strong relationship with, who will help and guide you in times of need. On a similar note, surround yourself with like-minded women, who share your hunger for success and growth. Build with each other and create a support system amongst yourselves that will help to empower and encourage you. It’s not just about working hard, it’s about working smart. So keep focus on your goal, and think about the steps you need to take in your career in order to reach it. Look at the skillset that is essential for you to land your dream position, and practise until those qualities become second nature. Finally, do not accept the status quo within the industry and remain business-minded.”
What do you consider to be your biggest achievement so far?
“On a personal level, probably receiving the MBE on the Queen’s Honours List as that was something I never expected to happen in my life. In terms of my career, I would have to say my overall achievements with [songwriter] Wayne Hector. He has been such a blessing in my life and a joy to work with over the years and I am proud of our growth together.”
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“A powerful senior woman of the music business Stateside once shared this with me: don’t expect a handout. If they won’t give you a seat at the table, make your own table. Arrive 10 minutes earlier, return everyone’s calls and return every email, because the road sweeper today can be king of the castle tomorrow. Be humble.”
On so many levels, 2020 has been a year of unprecedented change in the music business and, indeed, the world itself – what’s been the biggest lesson you’ll take away from it?
“Tomorrow is not promised; be thankful for the moments you have today.”