Occasionally, we must praise Lana Del Rey‘s managers, Ben Mawson and Ed Millet.
Mawson, then a practicing lawyer at SSB, first met Lana when he was helping her get out of recording and publishing deals she’d signed early in her career. They built a personal and professional relationship and he eventually ended up managing her. He teamed up with Millet and they developed Tap Management in 2009.
Whilst the company has only been in existence for seven years, it “steered the career of the international star”, and they have since been developing major UK breakthrough artist (and double-BRIT award dinner) Dua Lipa.
Tap Management started as a London-based publishing firm – which now has offices in the US, Australia and Germany – and will soon branch out into its very own record label.
Mawson and Millett were crowned ‘Managers of the Year’ at the UK Artist and Manager Awards in 2017, which Lana spoke at.
The pair recently gave an interview with Music Business Worldwide, where they spoke about Lana and how she’s got another album in the works. Below are the interview highlights.
You’ve got offices around the world – how does that impact what you offer artists independently?
Ed: We’ve always had an eye on the global nature of music and we don’t want to be a ‘UK company’. Now more than ever it’s so important to start America at the same time as everything because it drives all your Spotify numbers.
We also sign quite a lot of things direct in Germany because it’s a great market, they can take stuff to radio and make it work and don’t have to wait for the UK to drive things.
That worked for Dua, for Lana and for Grace Carter, who is directly signed to Sony out there and signed to Universal everywhere else.
Ben: Lana got her record deal in Germany first – it’s such a huge market. You can have a career just in Germany and be very successful. Everyone used to be kind of obsessed with the Radio 1 playlist but we’ve always tried to be as global as possible and put an emphasis on all of the important territories.
During Lana’s speech at the A&M Awards in London last year, she praised you both for having shared principes and gave a bod to the #MeToo movement. As managers of two leading female artists, do you have conversation about sexism and equality, and do those tie into marketing decisions?
Ed: The way we look after artists is a partnership and the whole point is to empower someone, to finesse them and help them get even better. Everything they do is coming from them. We’ve never put Dua or Lana in a position where they’re told, ‘You need to be sexy.’
Ben: We look after them, but they are strong-willed and opinionated females. Dua won’t let anyone over-sexualise her. Lana was shot nude for GQ and there was outcry from some people saying it was in some way demeaning, but she was like, I’m having a laugh! Lana is a very strong woman – she doesn’t let anyone walk all over her, and Dua is the same. They are totally in charge of their creative.
What are your ambitions for Tap and the artists you look after?
Ed: We want to work with more artists and break more artists. We’re not really set up to do small independent stuff, we want global success with everybody. But we don’t have the objective to become a massive corporate management company, it’s always going to be relatively boutique.
Ben: Lana is going to keep putting music out. She’s got another album in the works and her fanbase is as rabid as ever. For Dua, the sky is the limit; she wants to end up performing in stadiums.
Read the full interview here. This was written for LanaDelReyFan.com with information and quotes taken directly from the full interview on Music Business Worldwide.
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