What is A&R?

A&R, or "Artist and Repertoire," is a term used in the music industry to describe the process of scouting and signing new artists, as well as managing their careers. A&R managers are responsible for finding new talent, working with artists to develop their sound, and negotiating record deals. If you're interested in a career in music, it's important to understand what A&R is and what it entails. In this blog post, we will discuss the role of A&R managers and what they do day-to-day.

What Does a A&R Manager Do?

The primary responsibility of an A&R manager is to find new artists and sign them to a record label. This involves attending shows, scouring the internet, and listening to demos. Once an artist is signed, the A&R manager works with them to develop their sound and prepare for their release. This includes working with producers, booking studios, and arranging publicity. In addition to finding and developing new talent, A&R managers also handle the careers of existing artists. This includes managing their schedule, handling their finances, and dealing with personal issues. A&R managers need to be able to multitask and wear many hats, as they are responsible for a lot of different aspects of an artist's career.

Do You Need a Degree to Be an A&R?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as each record label has different requirements. However, most A&R managers have a college degree, usually in music or business. Additionally, many A&R managers have experience working in the music industry in some capacity before moving into an A&R role. This could include working as a tour manager, music journalist, or artist manager. While a degree is not always required, it is helpful to have some formal education in the music industry before trying to break into A&R.

How Much Do A&R Get Paid?

A&R managers are typically paid a salary, although they may also receive bonuses based on the success of the artists they sign. Salaries can vary widely, depending on the size of the record label and the location. For example, an A&R manager at a major label in New York City would likely make more than an A&R manager at an independent label in a small town. In general, though, A&R managers can expect to make a comfortable living. The average A&R Manager gets paid $43,000 to $150,000 per year.

Do A&R Get Royalties?

A&R managers do not typically receive royalties, as they are not considered to be part of the creative process. However, they may receive bonuses if an artist they sign goes on to have success. Additionally, A&R managers may be eligible for commissions if they successfully negotiate a record deal for an artist.

Who Does A&R?

A&R is typically handled by a team of people, all of whom have different roles. The A&R manager is the head of the team and is responsible for finding new artists and signing them to the label. The A&R coordinator assists the A&R manager and handles administrative tasks. They are responsible for scheduling meetings, booking studios, and keeping track of deadlines. The A&R scout attends shows and scours the internet for new talent. They listen to demos and pass on their recommendations to the A&R manager. The A&R assistant supports the entire team and helps with whatever needs to be done.

What Does an A&R Team Look For?

When looking for new artists, the A&R team is looking for someone who has star potential. They want someone who is unique and has a sound that will stand out in the crowded music market. They also look for someone who is hardworking and dedicated to their craft. Above all, they are looking for someone who they believe in and who they think has what it takes to make it in the music industry.

The A&R Process

The A&R process can be broken down into three steps: finding new talent, developing their sound, and negotiating a record deal.

  • Finding New Talent

The first step in the A&R process is finding new talent. This involves attending shows, scouring the internet, and listening to demos. A&R scouts attend shows and listen to demos to find new artists. They recommend their favorites to the A&R manager, who then decides who to sign.

  • Developing Their Sound

Once an artist is signed, the A&R team works with them to develop their sound. This includes working with producers, booking studios, and arranging publicity. The goal is to create a unique sound that will make the artist stand out in the crowded music market.

  • Negotiating a Record Deal

The final step in the A&R process is negotiating a record deal. This is where the A&R manager uses their bargaining power to get the best possible deal for the artist. They negotiate terms such as advance, royalties, and marketing budget.

The A&R process is a long and difficult one, but it's also very rewarding. It's an exciting time for both the artist and the label, as they embark on a new journey together. If you're interested in a career in music, understanding the A&R process is essential.

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