What is your current role and how long have you been in the position for?
I am an Artist Manager and Executive Assistant at Michael Parisi Management, and I’ve been working here for almost 2 years.
For those who are unfamiliar, tell us a bit about what you do, what you work on, who you work with, and what your goals are.
My job in a nutshell is to handle all the behind the scenes stuff and help our artists further their careers. Whether that is album releases, tours, merch and everything in between. It is my job to facilitate their vision and glue all the pieces together without a hitch.
Some of the talented people I work with are Vera Blue, Dan Sultan, Polish Club, and Judah Kelly to name a few. Working at MPM, I do all of the day-to-day stuff for our artists, organising and running what everyone is doing. I’m basically one big walking reminder to our artists – it’s my job is to know everything that is happening. In my role I also assist Michael with anything he needs to run the company.
My goal is to be a part of something meaningful. When I go to an artist’s gig and see how their music has impacted someone’s life for the better is a pretty special feeling, and to be a part of the hard work that led to that moment is invaluable. It’s the feel-good part of the job.
“I’m basically one big walking reminder to our artists – it’s my job is to know everything that is happening.”
Describe a normal day in the life of Charlotte Ried.
I never wake up knowing what the focus of my day will be. That’s the exciting part of the job, I can guarantee it will never be boring. Most my days consist of getting up early for conference calls with people I work with overseas, answering a ton of emails 24/7, meetings, and doing lots of planning, logistics, budgets, and liaising with agents, labels, other managers, brands, and events, along with constant communication with our artists.
More often than not I’ll be working out of our office in Collingwood, but there are days where I’ll be working interstate or overseas. I love travelling, so to be able to combine the two is a massive perk. A regular day can often include gigs and other events – and consuming a large amount of coffee.
How do you unwind when stressed/tired?
Hanging out with friends, watching some Netflix, or going for a walk with my Spotify playlists blasting usually does the trick. I find when I’m really stressed out, it’s because I haven’t actually been paying attention to myself. My job is really to look out for others, so sometimes I have to remind myself to look after me too and that it’s important to have down time.
How did you get your start in the music industry – what is your story of how you got to where you are today?
I got my start in artist management interning for another management company while at University, which quickly lead to me working full time there. But before that I started stage managing in high school. That’s how I learned the skills of management, by organising and running shows and events. I think having the skills to run a production with so many people involved, I learned how to run many different projects all at the same time.
Multi-tasking is a huge skill for an artist manager, and making sure you’re working on all parts of an artist’s career. When I got to University, I wanted to try my hand at artist management as I thought it would be pretty similar to stage management, so I applied for an internship and dove head-first in to the industry. It all snowballed from there.
Have you got any advice for people wanting to start a career in the music industry/doing what you do?
Interning is a great way to get your foot in the door and a taste of the industry. You can try out different areas until you find one that suits you. Working with a great mentor can also boost your career and teach you the do’s and don’ts of the music business. Never be afraid to ask questions. Alternatively, there are so many great unsigned bands in Australia. If you don’t already, check out some local acts at venues around you. You might just find some awesome people to work with.
Do you feel that higher education is necessary to establish a career within the Australian music industry?
I don’t think it’s necessary, but it doesn’t hurt. I did a Bachelor of Arts (Music Industry) degree to give myself time to figure out exactly what I wanted to do for work in the music industry, and to develop my skills and gain contacts. In saying that, so many people that I know in the industry never did higher education. It doesn’t guarantee a job in the industry – your experience, drive and work ethic are so much more important.
What tips would you give a young musician or artist trying to succeed in Australia? Is there a certain route they should take in order to be successful?
There’s never one clear route to “succeed” in this industry. It’s different for everyone. The big thing for me is that you should treat it like full-time work. Practice every day, play heaps of shows, and write constantly. If you really want a career in music, you need to treat it like one and do as much work as you can. Doing the hard yards builds tenacity and confidence. But most importantly, you should do it because you love it. The music industry is strange and unpredictable where hard work isn’t always rewarded.
What issues do you feel the Australian music industry is currently facing and how do you think these could be changed and improved?
With the way the industry is moving, music is progressively being devalued. I believe it’s more important than ever if you like a band or artist, that you support them by actually buying their album on CD or vinyl, or even an iTunes download, not just on streaming services.
I see firsthand how much of a difference it makes. I always support my friends, whether that’s buying a ticket to see them play live (not just being on the guest list), merch or their music. I’d want people to do the same for our acts as this is how they make a living and finance their projects.
“I never thought I was a patient or calm person until I started in management. You have to be logical, good at problem solving and really organised, as well as strong-willed and nurturing. I am constantly up-skilling as well.”
Have you had to overcome any challenges or adversity in your career, and if so how did you approach them?
An ongoing challenge for myself and others in the industry is sexism and ageism. There have been times where I’m treated differently, belittled or underestimated because I’m a young female. I used to be shocked when it happened, but now I try to point it out and talk about it with my friends when it happens. I like to prove people wrong but more importantly I’m motivated to keep doing a good job because I love what I do and want to succeed.
Have you had to develop any skills/personality traits that you didn’t realise you’d need?
I never thought I was a patient or calm person until I started in management. You have to be logical, good at problem solving and really organised, as well as strong-willed and nurturing. I am constantly up-skilling as well. There are always new things to learn in this job which I really enjoy, so your skill set is continually growing. In management you have to wear a lot of hats, so it’s important to broaden your knowledge in all areas of the industry.
Who are your role models in the industry whether they be international/Australia?
I think being surrounded by people who are kicking ass in the industry is pretty inspiring. Whether that’s my friends who are working incredibly hard and starting to gain success for being awesome musicians, photographers, managers, or people I work with daily. People like Jeremy Sharp and Quincy Buchanan are two of the hardest working people I know, and they constantly inspire me. They also always look out for me and give me great advice, which I think is important for any young person in the industry wanting to succeed. Michael is also a role model for me. He’s given me the capacity and tools to learn as much as I can through my role at MPM.
What advice would you give your 18yo self?
I’d tell myself to just chill out and stop worrying about the little things. I’ve always been a bit of a stress-head and perfectionist, but I’ve learned not to take things so seriously and to just run with it.
What does 2018 hold for you? Any exciting things that you can tell us about?
2018 is going to be exciting. I’ve got lots of things already in the works for our artists. Some acts will be releasing new music, and we’ll be launching some new acts as well. There’s so much on the cards – nothing I can disclose just yet – but I can definitely say that Michael and myself will be very busy!
Top 3 artists you’re currently listening to?
What’s your go-to karaoke song?
Living on a Prayer – Bon Jovi.
You either love them or hate them. I grew up listening to them, yet I also didn’t know I sang all the words wrong until I was 18.