Golden Poppy is an artist service company centered around artist management guidance and empowerment and it's a reworking of a typical label and management experience. The agency is the product of the expertise of Michaela D Jordan, an experienced professional who’s been in the industry since she was 13 years old, and who’s been working with record labels for the past 5 years.
“I took all the dos and don'ts from my experiences with labels and asked myself what the best way to restructure the whole concept would be. The old school kind of record label and management structure really isn't adapting quick enough to fit the needs of artists today, because the music industry is a completely different world than it was 10 years ago.”
Michaela has had the chance to gain a 360-degrees knowledge of the music industry, as both an artist and industry professional.
“What I saw at that young age and coming up in that kind of environment, was that artists don’t always see managers and labels as advocates and people on their side or on their team. We're kind of seeing them as someone on the outside, almost someone to combat against sometimes” she shares while explaining the process that brought Golden Poppy to life.
During her career as a musician, Michaela had a chance to work with kids and teenagers as a music instructor. “Seeing them being so serious about being professionals is really what kick started it and made me want to continue to empower and support young talents in a professional capacity” she says. “So instead of these artists feeling like they have to kind of watch their back with labels and managers, I want them to feel like they have a team. So I began managing artists freelance and recently started Golden Poppy”
Ups and Downs of a Career in the Industry
“The best part of my job is seeing an artist come to me at the beginning of their career and taking them through an album release and their first gig and watching them blossom as an artist. You see them become empowered within themselves and start making these decisions for themselves and it’s just so amazing to see.”
But no matter how satisfying and rewarding her job can be, Michaela also shared with us a taste of the not-so-fun side of this industry. “I've been in situations where the label or the management doesn't trust the artist or doesn't think they know what they're doing. I’ve had someone in the past telling me not to trust an artist because “she doesn’t know what she’s doing”, when clearly that was not the case.” she explains “Also when I see managers using artists for their own gain and manipulating them instead of educating them properly, so that they can play games with them.. That is the most frustrating thing.”
To Young Women and Queer People Starting Out in the Industry
“When I walk into a room, people assume that I don't know what I'm talking about, until I prove them wrong. And when a man walks into the room, people assume he knows what he's talking about, until he proves them wrong. As women or queer people, we immediately have to prove ourselves and prove that we belong there in a way that a straight white man will never have to do.” she says “And I’m talking as a white woman.. I can’t imagine what a black person goes through walking in those rooms.” she adds.
“Being a manager, a label executive, an artist or just working in the industry in any capacity, are some of the toughest career paths you can choose. That’s why so many people “can’t make it”, because they realize how hard it is.”
So if you’ve already asked yourself whether or not you wanna do it, and the answer is a solid YES, then go out there and be a badass.
Things might be a little bit harder for some of us, but the payoff is gonna be worth it.
“You're gonna go home and you're gonna practice a little harder, study a little bit harder and work just a little harder than your peers. The knowledge that you gain and the satisfaction in your work, will be worth it. Don’t be afraid of a little hard work.”