What image do you need to get work?
“It’s a good idea to have a couple of different looks. The most important thing is to take care of the photos you submit. It doesn’t have to be a professional shot, but it has to be clear because that’s what I send to clients before an audition. Head and shoulders are good; live shots generally don’t work.”
How can musicians find an agent?
“I’m in the Music Week yearbook as a session fixer. If you want a music career, it’s the Holy Bible.”
What kind of players get work?
“I can get work for people who are adaptable, who I can put forward for more than one type of job, who are reliable and friendly. If anybody lets me down, I don’t use them again. Session agents speak to each other, so if word gets around that you’re trouble, you won’t be used. Session work is sporadic. It’s important not to change your phone number. People always put “experienced in all styles”. That can actually put clients off. Be the best you can be at what you do best.”
What should a guitarist expect of an audition?
“Make sure you’re completely prepared before you turn up. Learn the tracks properly. Know the location of the audition before you arrive. You should ask what gear you need to take with you.”
How much will an agent charge?
“It varies. I charge 15 percent [commission], and 20 per cent for an ad or a film because they’re a lot of work, plus VAT. You only pay me if you get work. It wouldn’t be fair otherwise. I can’t guarantee that you’re going to get any work. Some agents demand to represent you exclusively. That’s absolutely wrong.”
What’s your top tip for guitarists wanting to break into the session world?
“Put what you’ve done most recently at the top of your CV. People seldom read all of it. I need to know that you have been gigging. Say whether you play electric or acoustic, and any secondary instruments. People often request guitarists who can do backing vocals, so if you do, say so. A MySpace page or website is useful, and a couple of YouTube videos so people can see how you perform live. Keep your CV to one page. People don’t need exam results, unless you’ve studied music at college. Say if you can read music as well.”