By Courtney Sosnowski | Reporter
More than just singing on a stage, making it in the music industry involves connections, budgeting, a team who believes in you and a little faith. Texas country music star and Baylor graduate Holly Tucker and her management team held a panel 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation to provide insight on the music industry.
Holly Tucker, a Waco native, made it to the top 6 on Blake Shelton’s team in season 4 of NBC’s “The Voice.” Since the reality show jump started her career four years ago, she has produced a full-length album, “Steel,” and is currently touring around Texas.
Tucker is an independent artist who is not signed to a record label, bringing challenges to any budding artist. Luckily, Holly Tucker said she had a family who has rallied around her career, and her father Johnny Tucker and brother Shane Tucker work as her managers.
“With the music business changing like it has changed, the model of the music business has always been based on CD sales,” Johnny Tucker said. “And CD sales are down because most people are streaming and downloading and things like that … because of that, the labels in Nashville are not signing young artists and developing them early in their careers.”
When it comes to managing an artist, Johnny Tucker said there can be a misconception about the duties of a manager and artist.
“The misconception is that as the manager you’re just going to do everything, you’re going to be responsible for everything except for the music,” Johnny Tucker said. “But [in] this day and time, we’ve learned and Holly’s found that she has to be involved in every aspect of her career.”
Holly Tucker emphasized the importance of authenticity and making sure that fans can really know the true artist.
“Branding is definitely the biggest thing that goes into being an artist,” Holly Tucker said. “You have to know exactly who you are, and that’s what it starts with. You have to know what you’re about, what your story is.”
When it comes to publicity, the Texas country music industry differs from mainstream country music. Since Texas country musicians focus more on small towns, Holly’s publicist has to get creative. One time, in a small town without a news station, Holly took over the town’s Instagram account for the day.
As a result of this hard work, Holly Tucker was honored with multiple awards from ETX Music Awards, including the 2017 Female Vocalist of the Year. Above all, faith has helped Holly Tucker’s career blossom.
“There are some months and some quarters of the year when we’re just thinking to ourselves as a team like, ‘How are we going to make this?’” Holly Tucker said. “ … and it always blows our mind because right when we think that we’re not going to be able to do something or we’re not going to be able to take this opportunity, our faith comes into play and God has literally taken care of us. Exactly what we need, at exactly the right time.”
Holly and her managing team were hosted by CMA EDU, an organization created to educate Baylor students about the realities of the music industry.