Last night the Tuning Fork hosted a star-studded awards ceremony, celebrating the amazing successes that the managers behind New Zealand's biggest acts have achieved over the last year.
Artists and industry specialists alike have raised their glasses in toast to the endless contribution that managers make to the New Zealand music industry, and celebrating all those who took home awards this evening.
First time winner Ashley Page took home the prestigious ‘Manager of the Year' award for his work with the artists Broods, Joel Little,and Jarryd James, a very-well deserved award for a manager who always goes above and beyond for his artists. The last year has seen his brother-sister duo Broods break into the UK and US markets in the same year as their Breakthrough Artist win at the 2014 VNZMAs. Joel Little, one of Ashley's long term clients, has been enjoying the greatest success of his career, working with an ever-growing list of artists including the likes of Lorde, Sam Smith, MØ, and Ellie Goulding as well as taking homeBest Engineer and Best Producer for his work on Lorde's Pure Heroine. Ashley's work with Jarryd Jameshas also achieved incredible success, with his debut single 'Do You Remember' going Platinum and reaching #1 on the Australian iTunes charts.
‘Breakthrough Manager of the Year' was awarded to duo Nick Dwyer and Dick Johnson for their work in raising the profile of their dance music project Weird Together. With a sound that celebrates internationalism, Weird Together have made a name for themselves on the Australasian festival circuit, bringing their borderless tunes to the stages of Rhythm & Vines, Homegrown, Subsonic (NSW) and their own Weird Night Out and World Together festivals in Auckland.
For the second year in a row, Scott Maclachlan has taken home the ‘International Achievement' award, for his role in the continuing and unprecedented success of Lorde and Sol3 Mio. This award is a true recognition of the incredible work that Scott has contributed to raising the profile of both his artists and New Zealand music as a whole overseas, particularly throughout the US and Europe.
The prize for ‘Self Managed Artist' was awarded to Andrew Spraggon for his project Sola Rosa. A 15-year labour of love for Andrew, Sola Rosa began as a solo project before growing into the five-piece band we know and love today, and they are set to kick off their UK tour in August in support of their latest albumMagnetics.
James Southgate has won the ‘Independent Tour' award for the Devilskin ‘We Rise' Album Release Tour. Selling out all 20 dates of the 5 week tour last July, the last year has been packed with success for James and Devilskin who have just returned home from a stint of shows in the UK and US.
Awesome shows aren't possible without awesome venues, and awards were also presented to thePowerstation for ‘Best Large Venue' for the third year running, and The Kings Arms for ‘Best Small Venue'. Voted for by MMF members only, these awards acknowledge the roles of all those working at the venues to ensure their gigs are amazing for artists and fans alike.
The ‘Industry Champion' for 2015 was for the first time open to individuals and so was awarded to Brendan Smyth, music manager for NZ On Air. Brendan's contribution to New Zealand music is incomparable, being responsible for all music funding given by NZ On Air and helping to develop many of NZ On Air's initiatives that support all artists in New Zealand including NZ Music Month and the funding scheme Making Tracks.
The MMF Mentoring Program provides opportunities for new artists to have one on one time with industry specialists, and the Achievement Award recognises the efforts of a member who utilises the resources provided by the program and shows great initiative. This year the ‘Achievement Award' was presented toKatie Thompson who has demonstrated great promise in her work with Quirky Music, who provides holistic music management for a range of independent artists.
2015 Music Managers Awards Winners
Manager of the Year: Ashley Page (Broods, Joel Little, Jarryd James)
Breakthrough Manager of the Year: Nick Dwyer and Dick Johnson (Weird Together)
International Achievement: Scott Maclachlan (Lorde, Sol3 Mio) 2nd year in a row
Self Managed Artist: Andrew Spraggon (Sola Rosa)
Independent Tour: James Southgate (Devilskin ‘We Rise' Album Release Tour)
Large Venue: Powerstation (3rd year in a row)
Small Venue: The Kings Arms
Industry Champion: Brendan Smyth
MMF Mentoring Program Achievement Award: Katie Thompson - Quirky Music