The Preatures, Japanese Wallpaper, Montaigne, Ziggy Alberts, All Our Exes Live In Texas and LANKS… Katie Rynne books them all! With industry experience as a publicist-tour manager for bands like that, you know her word is as good as gold. Currently a part of Select Music, Katie works with the future seekers and ARIA-winning biggens. Select prides itself on supporting artists from the ground up, and all that input keeps Katie verrry busy, we sure are glad to have her!
This is a Week In The Life Of Katie Rynne…
As a booking agent, I’m responsible for the live performance bookings of all of the artists on my roster, spanning across tours, festivals, and one-offs/corporate shows. Basically, any time one of my bands is requested for a live performance, it comes through me as the first point of call, and I then liaise with management to decide if it works in the band’s overall plan and go from there. I negotiate all deals, and then our admin team handles all contracts, worksheets & accounts with respect to the gig. I also am constantly looking for new acts to join the roster, pitching for support slots & festivals, locking in support acts for my tours, and working on long-term touring plots for my acts.
There’s definitely no set day-by-day tasks, everything is so fluid throughout the week. However generally on a Monday I use it as a reset day to start off the week: I’ll follow up on shows from the weekend and get final sales figures sent through, follow up on any outstanding enquiries, and then go through my list of shows per artist to set my To Do List up for the week and then it’s all engines go from Tue-Fri! The main daily grind is staying on top of emails – enquiries coming in for acts, festivals chasing accreditation documents, sending press assets to events, approving artwork etc etc, all very reactive. For the proactive tasks, it includes pitching to festivals weekly, submitting supports for any new tours announced, listening to new music & bands, and most importantly calling managers to discuss long-term overall plots & touring strategies – which then leads into chasing tour availabilities, routing a run, putting tickets on sale, and booking support slots.
CHALLENGES & ACCOMPLISHMENTS
The biggest challenge of the job is just finding the amount of hours in the day to squeeze everything into! And cancellations. When a band gets sick, or there’s a storm and a festival is cancelled last minute, you’ve got to take the call and find a solution no matter the time or day. Biggest accomplishments for me are when you lock in that perfect tour (I get a real satisfaction if it can be done with the perfect routing for travel), or you get a band on a festival that you worked really hard to pitch for – celebrating the little wins throughout the week.
HIGHLIGHTS OF THE JOB
Nothing quite beats standing side stage at a sold-out show for one of your acts and remembering when you first saw them however long ago in a tiny pub. Really makes all the hard work incredibly worth it.
LOWLIGHTS OF THE JOB
There’s a real sense of competition and pressure as touring is one of the most lucrative sources of income for a musician, and ego can often get in the way, so if you don’t handle it correctly it can be a real recipe for a mental health disaster. But maintaining good relationships and having an open dialogue with the people you work with always helps to alleviate this.
WORDS OF WISDOM FOR BEING AN AGENT
Get out and meet as many industry people as you can – I started off doing a string of different internships & selling merchandise to not only learn all facets of the industry, but to meet different people working in the industry, and that was what eventually lead me to Select Music. Aim for volunteering or working with venues & festivals so you can understand their side of doing bookings, and you’ll, in turn, end up meeting & working with a number of agents. Show that you’re passionate about live music, go to gigs, go to festivals, support the little bands and be a part of their story as they grow. Go to panels & conferences and learn as much as you can. The industry is very small, the real go-getters get noticed, and we’ll often turn to colleagues for recommendations when we’re hiring, so the more people you know, the better.