Jamaica Gleaner / She got her footing in artiste management with the 2015 Magnum King of Dancehall Devin Di Dakta. Shelly-Ann Curran was no stranger to the music industry and her expertise was proven when she helped Devin Di Dakta transition from a talent competition winner to a Grammy-nominated artiste over the course of a year. That accomplishment allowed Curran to help write a piece of history, as her artiste became the youngest to be nominated in the Best Reggae Album category at the Grammy Awards. She gave The Gleaner insight into her strategy and experience.
What got you into artiste management, and what has the experience been like so far?
Devin Di Dakta is to be credited for getting me into artiste management, formally, when he asked me to become his manager. The experience has been a dynamic one, having to ensure you keep up with what’s current to efficiently guide the artistes I manage.
What has been the most challenging part of your career in music?
The most challenging part of my career has to be getting the music to the people through media. It hasn’t been a great challenge because I manage excellent talent, but still, that is the area that needs some light for upcoming talent to be shared by media.
You have achieved quite a lot with your artiste Devin Di Dakta. Do you plan to expand on the number of artistes you manage?
In addition to Devin Di Dakta, I manage Delando Colley. At the moment, I am not adding any other artistes to my management roster, but I do offer consultations for new and experienced artistes, where they will be able to have one-on-one session on an hourly basis for up to three months. I’m currently doing work with Bugle as I move to expand my portfolio.
In your experience as an industry professional, what changes can be made to the industry to improve the quality of music?
The change I would love to see coming from Jamaican music professionals is work prepared and packaged with international appeal. Artistes, songwriters, and producers need to create music that can go beyond Jamaican ears and appeal to other markets, competing with all the best, globally. We have the talent, enormous talent. We simply need to hone and develop it.
As a female in the business, do you find that there is space for more females, or is the industry against allowing women to access certain positions in music?
There is always resistance to persons for different reasons, but being female is not a challenge I have seen for the role I have in the business. More females are definitely needed, and I’m sure will be welcomed. The network I have experienced has been supersupportive and has given great insight into the discipline to help guide me in my role. The music industry overall takes a certain personality and not a specific sex.
JAMAICA: Five Questions with Shelly-Ann Curran
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