Emily White has worked with everyone from Dinosaur Jr. to Zac Brown Band, she’s founded and run multiple entertainment companies, released a number of books, and now, when she’s not teaching at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Emily is using music data analytics to help activate voters for the upcoming presidential election in November.
#iVoted is a get out the vote effort, so it's 100 percent non-partisan/bi-partisan. That's what allowed Live Nation, AEG.... None of those public-facing companies could work with us if we're partisan. You'd be surprised – we hear from people that are like, 'I'm Republican; am I allowed to do this?' We're like, 'Yeah, of course! Come on!' We're just excited to get people thinking about voting, hopefully voting, and to be honest, that's a huge concern of probably 80 percent of the artists we contacted.... They don't want to alienate anyone anyway. #iVoted is totally open.... We don't know people's political beliefs.... We just want people civically engaged.
Emily is a music industry veteran who started her career as a world class tour manager before retiring at 23 to explore other facets of the music business. Today, she is taking her world class tour management skills onto the campaign trail with the #iVoted initiative.
[What makes a good manager is] doing the things that you say you'll do. Getting back to everyone. It's not a very glamorous job.... You want someone that works hard ... that takes care of themselves and is balanced.... We [Collective Entertainment] really like artists that have had management before, because there is some perspective and they kind of understand that we're human beings.... Modern management is very much a partnership, so the artists have to get back to us. The more we're chasing, the less we can move things forward. I've always managed by building businesses around the artist, and taking care of fans is a very close second.... You set the short- and long-term goals with the artist, you assemble the team around the artist ... and then you're basically the CEO of the team, making sure those team members are working toward the short- and long-term goals.
In this episode, Emily talks about the highs and lows of her tour management career, explains How to Build a Sustainable Music Career and Collect All Revenue Streams, and describes how Chartmetric data is helping #iVoted get out the vote in 2020.
We basically go in and grab the top Spotify streams ... the top YouTube streams. We grab the artist with the most Instagram followers in each market.... What I really loved is how Chartmetric has the top artists who basically identify as being from each state. We have these phenomenal national acts, but then we have this groundswell of really amazing local musicians, so it's been really cool to see these artists excited about voting and engaging and interacting with their communities.
This year, #iVoted, which Emily founded with Madison House co-founder Mike Luba and Wilco’s Pat Sansone, will be putting on one of the biggest digital music festivals ever, with hundreds of artists performing via webcast nationwide. The cost of admission for fans? A selfie from home with their mail-in ballot or a photo from outside of their polling place.
I was speaking in Scott LeGere's class ... and he heartbreakingly said, 'COVID is Napster for the concert industry.' And we still have a recorded music business after Napster. I'm not saying it isn't incredibly difficult, but now really is the time to innovate, evolve, pivot.
Listen to Activating Local Music Fans for the 2020 Presidential Election With #iVoted's Emily White on your favorite podcast listening platform here. And for a full list of artists performing on Nov. 3, check out iVotedConcerts.com. Full disclaimer: Chartmetric is a proud data partner of the #iVoted initiative.