In collaboration with St O’Donnell’s Select Talks

Some of may know him as Captain Franco and others may recognise him as one half of Halfway Crooks, the DJ duo and event organisers behind the famous rap parties that took place at Sydney’s Hudson Ballroom (fka GOODGOD Small Club) for a number of years.

No matter how you recognise him, when it comes to the music industry, Alexander Franco‘s done just about everything – from pushing some of Australia’s biggest artists, to managing promising up and coming talent – he’s had his finger on the pulse for close to a decade and has collected a wealth of knowledge and wisdom along the way.

We had a quick chat to Franco ahead of his appearance as one of the keynote speakers for St O’Donnell’s Select Talk on January 18th:

Best Before: How did you enter the music industry? What was your first gig and how did it come about?

Alexander Franco: Long story short, I worked for 3D World Magazine and one of my clients was Jam Music, a company owned by the Merivale group who were the promoters behind Good Vibrations Festival. I used to deal with the Head of Marketing there and he brought me over as a Marketing Executive to work with him on all the festival marketing. Good Vibes folded in 2011, and I took on some contract marketing work away from the music industry with SBS, then in 2012 saw a job vacancy for a Marketing Manager role at EMI and applied. After four years at EMI, I joined Future Classic in 2016.

How do you think the industry has changed since you came into it?

It’s a completely different industry. The rise of streaming (and subsequent death of physical and digital download products) has flipped the game completely on its head. The touring business has become the most important factor for any artist and building a solid release schedule to drive that activity is very important. There’s no such thing as ‘off cycle’ anymore, so important for any artist to have a constant and consistent output to keep fans and promoters interested.

What do you look for when scoping out a potential artist to work with?

Vision and ambition.

If you could manage any artist, who would it be and why?

That’s a tough question, but pie in the sky dreams, I find Aminé and Sabrina Claudio very exciting. I like artists who are building their own lane with a very clear vision, who aren’t afraid to take chances and don’t conform to what’s popular.

If you could give junior Franco one piece of advice regarding artist management, what would it be?

Don’t do it for the money. There’s a good chance, for the first few years, you won’t make any.

Tickets to St O’Donnell inaugural Select Talks event are available here.