Adele White talks Island's A&R strategy

Adele White talks Island's A&R strategy

Island Records senior urban A&R manager Adele White (above, right) believes the major is “opening doors for artists” and has predicted further breakthroughs in the wake of M Huncho (above, left).

White joined Island’s urban division in 2018, having been instrumental in breaking Not3s and Nadia Rose at Relentless Records. In an interview with Music Week to discuss the campaign around M Huncho’s Top 5 mixtape Huncholini The 1st, White said Island is thriving in a crowed A&R landscape.

“The independent thing has always been there, that’s how I started. When you have a label that believes in you, then you’re able to open doors for the artists you sign to things they would never have,” she said.

“Travelling, doing sessions, getting the best people, having the support to invest in artists. Art is expensive. Having a good team that’s knowledgeable and experienced, from the scouts to the marketing managers to the directors, we’re creating opportunities.”

We're showing that we could do this on a next level trajectory

Adele White, Island

White faced competition from independent rivals while pursuing M Huncho. “It was for four or five months, the longest I’ve ever chased an artist,” she said. “The whole independent thing was around. We're showing that we could do this on a next level trajectory. I don’t know if he could realise his vision independently.”

White relies on “rhythm and nuance” for success.

“I’m at a major label, so the requirements are major success in a way that’s authentic to the artist and to the audience,” she said.

“It’s about creating artists that have longevity and impact. The nicest bit for me is when little kids are singing the songs, that’s when you know everyone’s done their job, when parents and teachers notice, that’s when you know the work is going into culture. You want to penetrate culture.”

Read the full interview in the new edition of Music Week. We spoke to White alongside M Huncho’s co-manager Kwabz Oduro Ayim, read his Q&A here.


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