INSIDER’S TAKE: WHAT THEY GOT RIGHT VS. WELL…KINDA.
Every week I get a little stressed out that there won’t be any “well…kindas” to write about, because the show will have figured out all things Nashville….thankfully that hasn’t happened yet. But this week, the opposite was true. It’s not like they didn’t get anything right…there just wasn’t anything music business-y that they REALLY got right. So it feels silly to try to come up with some. No hard feelings, Nashville!
1) I don’t really know who this Gabrielle person is….I thought she was an image consultant or PR person, but now she’s acting like a manager, a day-to day manager, a personal assistant, an agent (the sponsorship/lifestyle brand meetings with Coke and Ford) and publicist. I’m confused! And, would you really meet with two companies of this size and importance together in one meeting? Or even on the same day? Probably no.
2) The scene where Juliet attacks a fan. Obviously, she has substance abuse problems and maybe other diagnosable mental health issues like bipolar disorder, and they’ve already depicted her as having postpartum depression, so I can’t really weigh in on the realistic-ness of her actions as an artist —since she’s clearly sick. But I’m still trying to figure out why she’s in Atlanta for this episode at all. She’s an opening act for Luke Wheeler on his tour and she’s signed to his label, but if there isn’t a show in Atlanta that day…why is she there? In most other episodes they show her flying on a whim here and there on a private jet (which I will write about in greater detail at some point.) So why would she just be hanging out in Atlanta for no reason? It’s less than an hour flight home to Nashville and a 4 hour bus ride. It seems odd that she’d have a day off like this in a city so close to home and not actually go home.
Also, if a fancy hotel had two big stars staying at it, I find it unlikely there would be fans just hanging out in the lobby waiting to snap shots and video of the stars with no security to help out.
3) Luke would not be the person giving Juliette a “talking to” after the fan-attack moment. That would be her management’s job. I guess since he’s technically her label head, that’s how they’re justifying it, but it’s just odd. Also, the concern that her actions would reflect badly on his brand seem a little puffed up. Even as an artist on his label, their brands would not be that intimately connected. And from the touring side, your support acts may represent you on some very small scale, but if a support act was potentially damaging your overall band, you’d just fire them. And Luke and Gabrielle are so worried that her actions are gonna mess up their lifestyle brand negotiations…they just wouldn’t. And if her actions would hurt the negotiations, they’d simply cut her loose. I mean, people have lost their opening slots for way smaller infractions than this….See Eric Church 🙂
4) I don’t understand what they’re doing with Marcus at Soundcheck…which is a rehearsal space, not a studio. [And yes, Soundcheck is a real place]. Maybe they’re acting like it’s pre-production? Occasionally the musicians are there for pre-production. (Pre-production is just all the stuff you do before you get into the studio so you’re as productive as you can be while the meter is running.) And you might work through arrangements of songs together, but you’d probably not be set-up like you were doing a show. That’s why this seems more like a rehearsal for a live show. When I worked with Paul Worley on my first album for EMI, Paul did two full days of pre-production with the band before we went into cut. Me, Paul and the musicians would work through arrangements together and try different things, so on the actual tracking days in the studio we weren’t thinking about arrangements and parts, as much as we were thinking about feel, and getting great sounds, etc… However, not very many people do this amount of pre-production with a band. That’s why I find this Marcus situation so unlikely. It just looks like a show rehearsal to me… and usually the band that plays with you on the road is not the band that plays on your record….so what are they actually doing?
And all this producer drama!! Marcus would most likely not just change producers at the drop of a hat. (A producer is hired by the artist, not the record label, and there’s a contract between the artist and the producer…so it’s way more cumbersome to just start and stop with different producers than the way it’s being depicted on the show.)
Ok, thanks for reading. Let me know in the comments section if there are things you’re curious about, or if I can shed any light on your music biz questions…XO