Podcast interview: Agency Exploits in the Music Industry

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I was contacted by a journalist recently who was putting together a radio piece on exploitation of musicians.

As well as reaching out to agencies, he wanted to hear how we’re doing things differently and fighting for a fairer industry at Encore.

Unfortunately, and perhaps unsurprisingly, he didn’t receive a single response from any of the agencies he contacted, so the piece has become a podcast instead of a national radio piece, featuring interviews with pro musicians, Alex Mann from the Musicians Union and myself.


You can hear my segment about Encore from 08:20 until the end. The only
inaccuracy is the description of Encore as an ‘agency’, which we are not.

Within the first 90 seconds, issues of late payments, minimum rates and transparency around commission are all flagged as serious cancers of the music industry.

These are all issues that simply do not exist on the Encore platform:

  • Late Payments no longer exist thanks to Encore Pay. Customers pay before the event, Encore pays out automatically 48hours afterwards.
    The payout is
    seamless, requires no manual effort from any of the Encore team, and the transfer is initiated exactly 48 hours after your gig starts. If you’re booked for a 7.15pm gig on a Monday, your transfer will be initiated at 7.15pm on the
  • We are now enforcing minimum rates when customers request quotes from musicians. It is impossible for musicians to quote below these rates and undercut others, and we’re currently working on some pricing visualisations and infographics to help customers understand what they should be paying for live music. The general public is largely misinformed about the cost of live music, and Encore is in a great position to change that.
  • Musicians always pay a service fee (‘commission’) of 15% on gigs booked through Encore, which is 100% transparent throughout the booking process. Unlike
    an agency, this percentage does not fluctuate based on the customer’s budget, and we always show full breakdowns to musicians when they’re being booked of how much they will earn and how much we will earn.

This post is only the beginning of a series I plan to write on the state of the music industry and how we’re tackling it head-on, and I’m looking for opportunities to speak about this publicly, either at events or in the press.

To get in touch, please email me: [email protected]