Cody Chapman talks life and the challenges of an agent in EDMCody Chapman

Cody Chapman talks life and the challenges of an agent in EDM

The life of an agent is an interesting one, and a side of the industry that is often overlooked by fans. An essential cog in the dance music puzzle, agents are the lifeblood of the industry and help fans the world over experience the music that they love. We sat down with Cody Chapman of AM Only to discuss his experiences as an agent, what he looks for in an artist and his expert opinion on what acts are ready to pop in 2014.

“How did you embark upon a career as an agent?

Like so many people in the music business I started out as a promoter, throwing events independently in college markets throughout Eastern Canada. In 2007 I produced some of the first Canadian shows for acts like The Bloody Beetroots and The Crookers, and years later produced the first shows for artists like Skrillex and Nero. Initially I just wanted to bring good music to town and introduce kids to something new and exciting. This eventually turned into a profitable business, and I began managing some of the local artists that I would put on my shows. When demand for some of these local acts I was managing grew, I fell into the role of agent, booking their early tours. I continued to juggle management, promotions, and bookings, until I wrapped my first UK tour for my premier artist at the time – Zeds Dead – at that point I knew I wanted to make the shift to working as an agent full time.

“Why AM Only?”

It was never a question. As a promoter I always had the utmost respect for AM Only agents, their roster, and the way they conducted themselves. The agency is forward thinking, and filled with likeminded agents who have – much like myself – seen this industry from many sides.

“Which of your artists are poised for a take off in 2014?”

Billon – you’ve never heard of them, but they’re going to be huge.

“As an agent what do you look for when signing an act?”

The things I look for in signing a potential client are (1) the quality of their original productions, (2) a strong team around them (manager, lawyer, label, etc), (3) well considered release plans, (4) credible co-signs from other artists, (5) a captivating live performance and image, and (6) that certain ‘je ne said quoi’ that you feel within the first 30 seconds of finding the artist – when you hear it you know it.


“3 reasons why someone would want to be an agent?”

– Agents get to shape the current musical landscape in an unparalleled way, breaking artists and pushing new sounds
– With the growing influence of the live touring business on artists bottom-line earnings, the role of an agent is becoming more important every day
– Agents help artists actualize their dreams and when it happens its a beautiful thing


“3 toughest things that comes with the territory?”

– Forget about working a 9-5, this industry never sleeps, and neither do agents. There aren’t enough hours in the day to get to every email in that never-ending inbox
– Staying organized and focused while moving at 1000 miles/minute – While managers might only have one client, some agents have up to 30, and they all need to be handled with diligence and care
– Managing artists expectations, especially  – its an important skill and one that sets apart the good agents from the great ones