The programme provides both financial and educational support, offering “12-month grants of up to £15,000, alongside expert-led professional development training.”
The Accelerator Programme was launched in January 2019 – with support YouTube Music, Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and the Scottish Music Industry Association – to help upcoming music managers develop long-term sustainable businesses.
The 22 participants this year represent a host of artists, songwriters, DJs and producers, including managers working with more than 70 acts such as Blinkie, Shygirl, Idlewild, Ay Em, BC Camplight, Employed to Serve, Mirra May, and Porridge Radio.
You can see the full list of 2021 participants below:
Adam Daly - BC Camplight, LoneLady
Adetokunbo T Oyelola - YolanDa Brown, Genevieve Dawson, Annastasia Baker
Ben Price - Lachi, Lucy May Walker, Viktoria Modesta
Danny Desai - Dyo, Ay Em, Maestro 'The Baker', Hira
Demonie Wilson - Govana, Chi Ching Ching
Despa Robinson - Jaykae, Tana, Smoke Boyz, Dapz On The Map, Grim Sickers
Ella-Bonai Gordon - Hamzaa, Henrie, Marshall and Maddy Abela
Feedy Frizzi - Daniel Brandt, Max Pope, Michael Lovett aka NZCA Lines
Ina Tatarko - Squid, Martha Skye Murphy, Tony Njoku, Kiran Leonard, Laura Misch
Jamie Ibe - Geovarn, Kadeem Tyrell, Lottie Jade & Richy Rambo
Joseph Peach - Tannara, Charlie Grey and Joseph Peach, Westward The Light
Josh Cohen - Caroline, Grove, Porridge Radio
Lauren Roth De Wolf - Moonchild Sanelly, Africa Express, Eliza Legzdina, The Orchestra Of Syrian Musicians
Lu Whiting - Himalayas, The White Lakes, Caroline Harrison
Michael Lambert - Fatherson, Idlewild, Rudi Zygadlo, Tom Joshua, Zoe Graham
Nigel Munjoma - Blinkie, James Bluck, Whoisorion, Kevin Gani
Phoebe Gold - Tendai, Kezia, Tommy Gold
Rob Harrison - Erin Bloom, TS Grave
Sarah M. - Shygirl, Butch, Lou Hayter, Lyzza, Delilah Holliday
Shikayla Kay - Rebecca Garton, Levelle London
Taisha Johnson - Miraa May
Thomas Bellhouse - Blanket, Dragged Into Sunlight, Employed To Serve, Leeched, Mortiis, Venom Prison, Vexed
Speaking about the initiative, Paul Bonham, Accelerator Programme Manager at the MMF said: "As we enter a third year, it feels Accelerator is firmly on the map and a new and diverse generation of music managers is benefitting from the programme. The support of YouTube Music, Arts Council England, Creative Scotland and the Scottish Music Industry Association has been absolutely crucial, and especially over the past 12 months when managers have had to show real resilience in order for their artists to pivot, innovate, survive and succeed. Digital-based entrepreneurial skills are now at the core of music management, and I believe that Accelerator's growing network of 65 people will help shape the future of our business. 2021's participants are an eclectic and exciting group, and I'm looking forward to similar successes in the 12 months ahead."
Dan Chalmers, YouTube Music director of EMEA added:"Music managers are one of the lifebloods of the music industry so we are looking forward to partnering once again with the MMF Accelerator Programme. We believe passionately in giving the next generation of managers the tools they need to propel our creative economy forward. We’ve been hugely impressed by some of the results achieved from the programme in the last few years and look forward to seeing what the Class of 2021 have in store for us.”
To date, more than 45 music managers from around the UK have benefitted from Accelerator and built an enviable track record of successes. The achievements of its 2020 participants have included Top 10 and Top 20 albums for Nafe Smallz (managed by Ashley Perry, Ozone Music), a Top 20 album for Dream Wife (managed by Tim Hampson, Candy Artists), cuts for Mandara Beatz and Nyge on Headie One’s Edna (managed respectively by Jade Richardson, Jade-Inc and Chris Grey, Problem Child), Nine co-writes for Henry Brill on Jack Garratt’s Top Ten album Love Death & Dancing (managed by Pip Newby, Friends Vs Music). There was also success for Brit-nominated Joy Crookes, who surpassed 100k YouTube subscribers (managed by Charlie Owen), and Joesef signing a global record deal with AWAL (managed by Lyle Scougall, Manana Management).
Last year also saw Ian Tunstall and Rian Zoll-Khan, who met on 2019’s Accelerator, deliver a Top 3 single for Wes Nelson. Meanwhile, also from 2019’s alumni, Koyejo Oloko guided Moses Boyd to a Mercury nomination for his debut album, Dark Matter, while Loretta Andrews saw her newly-signed client, Jake Issac, make his US television debut on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
Huey Walker, Senior Manager, Music, Arts Council England said: “MMF’s Accelerator programme plays a significant role in supporting the next generation of music managers across the country, equipping them with the skills they need to ensure the UK’s vibrant music industry, and its artists, remain at the forefront of global innovation. Arts Council England is pleased to support this important talent development programme, which shines a light on the incredible breadth of talent our country has to offer, thanks to National Lottery funding.”
Jason Edwards, CEO, The Scottish Music Industry Association, added: "We’re delighted that Michael and Joseph have been selected as part of this year’s programme and will get to benefit from the invaluable development opportunities provided by the MMF Accelerator. Through our partnership with MMF we will continue to spread awareness of Accelerator within our diverse membership, to ensure Scottish managers from all geographies and genres have an opportunity to be a part of this great initiative."
You can revisit our in-depth 2019 cover feature on the MMF detailing the programme here.