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Milwaukee Music

milwaukee

Heavy Industry

Over a decade ago, Mandy Kane made a splash on the Australian music scene with his album, Tragic Daydreams. Now he’s the Managing Director of Milwaukee Music, a Melbourne-based independent recording and development label. We checked in to see what the deal is.

What’s the key idea behind Milwaukee Music?

The central idea behind Milwaukee Music is to provide an accessible development platform for independent artists, which has all the functions of a record label but provides a suite of packages to meet an indie budget. We have partnered with the most reputable music based businesses nationwide, from all key areas of the industry in order to provide an incredible amount of value for a relatively minimal investment. An important aspect of our business model is that it allows artists to retain ownership of their copyright, and we think that is completely fair seeing as they are the ones investing the time, passion and finances required to seriously build a career.

Who would you say your key market is?

I would think that our key market is mid-level artists who are absolutely serious about building a sustainable career within the music industry, but recognise that they need some assistance to move on to the next level. There are so many incredibly talented bands and solo artists in Australia at the moment and the standard is becoming higher all the time. The chances of an artist’s success really comes down to how hard they want to fight to stand out, and whether or not they have someone in the business end who is willing to help them out. Some artists will come to us with literally no product and we will guide them through the process from recording through to promotion and release. On the other hand, we will also be working with artists who have a killer record sitting there but have no idea of how to market or release it, so we will offer them a package to meet those requirements.

Is this a response to need which is not being met in the industry to date?

I do believe that a business like Milwaukee Music is meeting demands that possibly are not being met anywhere else right now and we’re all really proud that this question has come up in almost every interview about the company so far! The business model is not just based on a snatch and grab operation and each project is handled with due diligence and attention to ensure that the artist has a really great experience while they are working with us. We want the quality of the product and process we facilitate to be the best it can possibly be given the budget and resources we have to work with.

There seems to be a real focus on transparency on your website.

We debated for a while whether we would make our prices visible to the public. We could either choose to display the prices on the website, or we could bait the artists with empty promises and soften them up on the phone before hitting them with the cold hard facts about how much they would need to pay. I know in the past, as an artist myself, that I have had this very experience and I really didn’t appreciate it. Our credo is to make it clear at the outset that there is an investment involved to take advantage of the services we offer, and to be precise as to how much that would cost and what our artists would receive in return. We cannot guarantee success, because the truth is nobody in the music or entertainment industries can. However, we can offer you packages which give you the best possible chance.

What level of artist are your services pitched at?

I think artists should approach Milwaukee Music when they are ready to start working at a professional level and require a team to assist in facilitating their development. There is no point us being involved if we cannot help, and we will be quite honest about that in our initial discussions with an act. It might be a case of us providing some free advice and waiting a few months before we get involved, and in other cases we may hear or see something that we absolutely love and we will actually approach the act ourselves.

TRAVIS JOHNSON

Check out what Milwaukee Music has to offer at milwaukee-music.com.

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