How do you manage an 8 member band?

It’s a question I get asked a lot. Often followed with comments like ‘You’re a brave woman’, or ‘I suppose it’s like herding cats’ etc. etc. – I can assure you there is no bravery or herding involved…(well mostly) – It is a team effort.

So how do I manage 8 members in a band?? The simple answer is I DON’T!

I joined Kíla at the beginning of 2018 as they headed into their 30th year in music.   I had worked with 2 of the Ó Snodaighs prior to that and knew Colm.  While I had experience as a promoter and manager, and a strong academic and professional background, it was my first time managing a band as big as Kíla.

So my attitude initially was watch, learn, trust my instincts. I focused on their social media presence, their fees and the types of gigs they were doing..and I concentrated on improving that presence, increasing their fees and finding decent gigs that would afford them time to record more.

It helped that I liked them enormously individually and it helped that the job was bilingual (Gaeilge agus Béarla), and it also helped that I absolutely love their music.

My instinct was to work with them and for them, and not to work without them. In truth I am part of a management team that consists of the band and of me.

Do I express my opinion? Yep I sure do.

Do I say if I think something is a good or a bad idea? Yep I sure do.

Will I really push an idea that I think could work for Kíla? Of course, all the time.

Do I tell Kíla what to do? No I don’t

‘THE WORD MANAGER IS MISLEADING. PEOPLE THINK WE’RE SOMEHOW THE BOSS OF THE ARTIST. IT’S THE OPPOSITE; THEY’RE THE BOSS.’ (Danny Goldberg)

The managers job is to guide them to get the most success out of their art. Personally I could not work with Kíla if it was any other way. I love their music and their creativity.

You can read about Danny Goldberg’s role with Nirvana below. Interesting reading.

‘The word manager is misleading. People think we’re somehow the boss of the artist. It’s the opposite; they’re the boss.’

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