After recording an album and investing a lot of money into our band, we are now looking for management (and also a record deal). Could you advise? We're quite naive regarding what management could and should do for the band.
Assistant Editor Tom Flint replies: A manager should be responsible for everything other than the business of playing and composing music — which is your job.
In the first instance, a manager should be able to find you a suitable record deal which satisfies your requirements. They should have contacts in A&R and will be able to persuade them to listen to your demos and attend your gigs. On a day‑to‑day basis, they should manage your schedule for gigs, press interviews and recording sessions, and be at the front line between you and the public, press and record company. If you're looking to record, it wouldn't be unreasonable to expect your manager to be active in finding you studios to record in, and engineers and producers to work with, and to take on the task of negotiating payment rates for these people.
A decent manager will have experience of all of the above, and will be able to divert many of the business dealings away from you, leaving you to concentrate on the music.
A good source of contacts and information on the subject is the Artists and Writers Yearbook (found in all respectable library reference sections). This book explains a little about the subject of obtaining management, accountants and contracts, and has many lists and contact details for managers and management companies.