Talking With The Trafficker Management

by moe on March 19, 2009

producersweek

Producer Manager, E, of The Trafficker Management

Producer Manager, E, of The Trafficker Management

Can you introduce yourself a bit and tell us what it is that you do and who you represent?

I go by the name of E.  I own and run The Trafficker Management.

We manage several producers, most notably: MegaMan, Tommy Gunnz and Boi-1Da. We also manage one rapper, Richie Sosa.

What’s the big difference for you as a manager, representing producers vs representing artists?

I would say managing an artist is a bigger challenge then managing producers.

The reason I say that is; with an artist there are more politics involved. It’s a lot more work and it takes a lot of patience. When handling artists you are not just selling a sonic product but a visual one as well.

Remember, an artist’s career is a lot more complicated than that of a producer. With producers, if they are talented then their beats can be sold.

My theory, is a great record will always find a home, no matter if it is a unknown producer from England or Timbaland. But don’t get me wrong, I do believe producers have a certain image to uphold. I also believe they should be out and about making sure people put a face to their beats.

Who are some of the artists you and your team has worked with so far?

Our collective production resume includes the likes of 50 Cent, Lil Wayne, Dr. Dre, Kardinal Offishall, G-Unit, Young Jeezy, CTE, D-Block, Drake, Trey Songz, The Dream etc.

We have been working hard recently on some new projects as well, but don’t want to let the cat out the bag as of yet.

How did you get into managing producers? Did you learn along the way or was there somebody there to show you the ropes?

I have always been fascinated with the art of production. Growing up, I always wanted to be a producer, but I realized I have no musical talent whatsoever (too bad I learned that after buying all the equipment).

I started off running an independent label in Toronto, which was a great learning experience for me.  After seeing that running an independent label wasn’t feasible at all for me, I decided to start managing producers.

I already had all the connections in place; the only thing I needed was talented producers. I think the experience with the indie label was a blessing in disguise: I get to deal with production all day, and I’m good at placing records. I learned a lot from trial and error, I am still learning up until this day, I can’t say I had anyone mentor me.

What direction do you see yourself and your company take?

We’re in a digital age right now. The constant evolution of technology is forcing the music industry to become a lot more interactive. You can no longer just rely on record sales; you have to focus on corporate branding and other modes of fiscal success (getting music in television shows or movies, video games etc.).

There are plenty of outlets out there for producers and artists through social networking, but I truly think these artists & producers need to create their own outlets – whether it is a website or a blog.

Have the fans get familiar with you through the social networks, and reel them in to your blog or website, and lock them in to your fan base.

You’re in Toronto, Canada, yet you’re placing a lot of work with some major US acts. Is a move to the US inevitable, or do you think it’s manageable to remain living in Toronto?

I actually relocated to Miami in April 2008. I also lived in Queens, NY for about 8 years.

I love Toronto, but there is only so much one can accomplish in Canada. There’s an abundance of talent in Toronto but there’s virtually no music industry out there. Even with technology today it is a lot easier to communicate by email, mp3 and that jazz, but a face to face relationship is key.

Miami contains many of the industry’s biggest recording studios. It makes it a lot easier to interact with artists and industry people. It’s also helpful that Miami is only a 1 hour flight from Atlanta, and the winters aren’t as cold as in Toronto.

I do go back to Toronto on occasion, my family is back there and so are 90% of my roster.

What’s the biggest advantage that you believe you have over others, that helps you place tracks?

That’s hard to answer without coming cocky or arrogant. Honestly, I think the fact that I have such strong relationships around the industry, people know me and trust me.

I believe in the talent of my clients and I always make sure they get their whole rate. Great music speaks for itself.

If you could change one thing about how the music industry is today, what would it be?

I think that the music industry is over saturated. There is an abundance of rappers, producers, managers and singers. I think that the over saturation of artists is degrading the art form to a certain extent.

If someone introduces themselves to me and says they rap or make beats right away, I usually thing to myself “this is going to be great”.

We have an email for demo submissions; 98% of the time the music being sent, whether producer, artist or singer, is not up to par. There’s a lot of people who should leave their music aspirations and just stick to being a fan.

What’s one of the most valuable lessons that you’ve learned since you’ve been a producer manager?

A lot of new, and inexperienced producers do not really understand the actual concept of having management. A lot of producers just want a manager just to say “hey, I got a manager”. I take loyalty very seriously, and think more producers need to grasp the idea of a manager.

Managers are more than people who just send out your beats. We are the first people to believe in you as a producer. We are nurturers, and we are motivators, yet we are always the bad cop.

The most important thing I learned is that to survive in this industry, whether you are an artist, producer or manager, is that you have to have leather skin. What I mean by that is people will shit on you, people will not always like your stuff; but the way you persevere through all the criticism is how you measure your success.

Having longevity as a manager usually doesn’t consist of how many placements or deals you get; its how much shit you can take from people.

Why did you get into music and at the end of the day what is your overall goal?

I’ve been a fan of music my whole life. As I mentioned earlier, I was never musically talented; but I still wanted to be involved. I’ve always had business instincts, so naturally, I ended up going the management route.

I’ve been offered label positions, but I enjoy working for myself and I feel that managing is my true calling. Not to say that if the right label position came up, I wouldn’t necessarily turn it down.

To answer the second part of the question, I think that my goal is to see my clients prosper and make music that people can enjoy and relate to. I come from Toronto, and we never really had any hope south of the border, so, I think that part of me has always wanted to help put the talent in my city on an international pedestal.

You can connect with E from The Trafficker Management on Twitter.

{ 16 comments }

Ben March 19, 2009 at 10:18 AM

Leather skin is an absolute must-have!!

Anonymous March 19, 2009 at 3:31 PM

dOPE READ

Bao Pham March 19, 2009 at 4:15 PM

Great insight. Keep it up.

Ricoz March 19, 2009 at 4:20 PM

Cool. Adding him on twitter. I need a manager! Lol

Anonymous March 19, 2009 at 5:10 PM

Wicked!!!!

Anonymous March 19, 2009 at 5:36 PM

check out my interview on http://www.makingthemogul.com

LADY ILL March 19, 2009 at 5:42 PM

dope, E. so proud of all your accomplishments and i kno the best has yet to come. keep up your hard work, fam.

much love & respect.
-illy

Black Girl March 19, 2009 at 8:02 PM

love this.

negron***** March 20, 2009 at 12:59 AM

WATTT SICK INTERVIEW

Pops March 20, 2009 at 2:57 AM

MY MAN ESCO – HOLD IT DOWN FAM!

Mezziah March 20, 2009 at 12:24 PM

GOOD READ… KEEP IT UP ESCO!

BrownBranditttttt March 20, 2009 at 1:03 PM

Damn this guy is running the game right now I heard that shit on Drake’s last tape – DISGUSTING BEATS.

youngfreshnew March 20, 2009 at 1:53 PM

Gotta show love to E. He is managing some of the industry hottest producers and rappers and what makes him great – he means what he says and he says what he means. This dude is on his grind and is doing an excellent job. One of my favorite people of 2009. Great interview!

JOHNNY BRAVO March 20, 2009 at 3:20 PM

ESCO RUNNIN THE SHOW, BOI-1DA ONE OF MY FAVOURITE PRODUCERS AND MEGAMAN IS CRAZY FOR THAT CONGRADULATIONS BEAT FOR DRAKE

Eric B March 20, 2009 at 4:13 PM

GOOD READ NIGGA SEEMS 2 B ON HIS JOBB

Smack the prodeucer November 1, 2009 at 3:24 PM

I sent some beats to dude and he said he wanted to do something.
Then out the blue, he just stop sending info.

Don’t know what to think about The Traffickers to this day.

Never had too much negative to say about anyone, but those dudes operate awfully different. never seen that from a management company.

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