Entrepreneuring New Territories in the Music Industry

At The Institute for Arts Entrepreneurship (IAE) we believe in leadership, strategic thinking, collaboration, persistence and learning from experience. These qualities have been and always will be a part of the models for the successful artist. The IAE teaches artists that they too are vital towards development and rebuilding the new American economy.

In these difficult times we have learned through our failures and successes the consummate entrepreneurs are those who learn to juggle multiple projects as well as multiple tasks. Through life dilemmas, nuances and setbacks, we gain the tools and experiences necessary for survival.

As the Principal/Director of the X-ART Entertainment Management Group, I (Reid Hyams) have often found myself wearing numerous hats, having many titles and positions in the music industry. Most recently, within the last sixty days I have decided to venture into Artist Management – something, I never thought I would ever want to be part of …and have immediately learned how wrong I was all of these years!

I have always stated and believed that Expertise comes from Experience, and Experience comes from Failure. Now I am about to embark on that journey once again, with an artist known as TOMI.

With a no-nonsense, do-it-yourself attitude, Slovakian born singer/songwriter, producer and performer, TOMI is quietly rising up the international ranks to stardom. At 18, TOMI packed his entrepreneurial grit and left his native country for Chicago… USA! After learning Chicago for a couple of years, TOMI signed with independent music label Rosehip Records. The relationship with Rosehip lead to the self-titled album “TOMI” released in 2007, which was also distributed by EMI in the states. The album received little attention in this country, but managed to generate an international buzz. Frustrated with the labels promotional efforts, TOMI decided to part ways with Rosehip Records, but at the same time found that his new release was doing quite well in Japan, where the record “TOMI” was licensed to Toy’s Factory Records. Knowing that his departure from his previous label would not mean a complete break from Chicago, TOMI arranged a phone conference from his native home in Slovakia with me, an industry associate, to discuss his newly revived career in the music industry two years later. The meeting of the minds has now lead to artist management. Previously, TOMI had left Chicago leaving me with a lasting impression as being an Entrepreneurial Artist.

Here we are two years later, TOMI has the number one ringtone in Japan this year once again, his song “Baby Get Down” reached number one on Hungary’s music charts, and is actively promoting his newly released 2010 self-produced album “With You” In that late November ‘09 conversation with TOMI we not only resumed talks of management, but… I placed TOMI on the 2010 Japan tour with the Backstreet Boys, which culminates with members of the Backstreet Boys joining TOMI on stage to sing one of TOMI’s original songs “You Can Tell Me” in Nagoya, Japan. Presently we’re making plans for additional touring in Japan and Europe, a U.S. release of the new album followed with a concert tour of the states sometime in the late spring and or early summer of this year.

TOMI & Backstreet Boys’ AJ & Brian in concert February 15, 2010 in Nagoya, Japan performing “You Can Tell Me”

TOMI’s My Space: http://www.myspace.com/tomi

X-ART Entertainment You Tube Video Logo

written by Reid Hyams and Maasai Amewa

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