Written By Prince of The City - Day after day people go to concerts and Clubs to see their favorite artist perform,but the average fan does not know the Prep work that goes behind making these events Happen. The unsung hero that doesn’t get the prestige and love is the Booking agent. Essentially without the booking agent the show wouldn’t be possible.
I got a chance to sit down with one of the nations Top Booking Agents Casey Hargrove or better know by his industry name “The Booking Boss” or
“Booking boss DC”. Hargrove is responsible for booking industry heavy weights such as Nicki Minaj, Fabolous, Kerri Hilson, Roscoe Dash, Red
Cafe, Bow wow, and the list goes on.......
How did you get the name booking boss? You been putting in that much work? Lol
Boss: an episode of Martin, he had a job buffing floors .. His boss was buffing boss- I liked how it flowed and decided to take on BookingBoss as my title .. So far so good. Most people don’t even know my real name but that’s fine lol
How long have you been booking Artist?
Boss: hmm, about 8 years .. I have always been in tune with the entertainment industry having started in radio on the Street Team for 93.9 in Washington, DC. Then I moved on to mixtape and internet promo for certain artists but formed a bond with E. Ness from Making The Band. Doing the promo for him, people started asking me about him for shows. That was the beginning.
What do you say to those people who feel that Booking is easy and anybody can do it?
Boss: I’ll say you will fail if you don’t have solid connects and surround yourself with trustworthy people. I have seen many “agents” try and fail because they cannot produce without going through 20 middle men. That’s a recipe for disaster. Get your connects up as far as artists direct information or management direct contact information. Be a people person, and try to stand out from the other 200 emails/calls they get throughout the day.
I could Imagine that the booking game can be very competitive, so how have you been able to stay on top of the game?
Boss: like mentioned in the previous answer, try to stand out from others. A lot of people may have an email address or a phone number but I make sure I find a way to stand out. I find a connection with the management and build off that, get their artists shows as regular as possible, and stay in constant contact so they know you when you need them. I’ve won my fair share of bidding wars lol
I know you are based out of DC, which is unique because DC is not as big of a market as a New York or LA.? How are you able to stay productive in the DMV Market?
Boss: I stay productive but I don’t put all my eggs in the DMV basket. I like to keep my name out there in DC by staying in touch with the promoters, letting them know when so&so is coming to town. Offering them deals, staying in there face and on the scene.
I know that you book artist in other countries as well. Is international booking more difficult then state side booking?
Boss: International booking is a longer process but always a bigger payday.
International promoters like to put on bigger shows more consistently. They take more risks in spending money because most International markets don’t have to compete as much as US areas. Difficult no, longer process yes.
What made you want to get in the booking game?
Boss: I enjoy playing the background role and watching everyone enjoy the show/party because of something I played a major part in .. And I do it because I’m good at it, I have dabbled in a few lanes but booking is my thing
Who was the first artist that you booked?
Boss: First artist I booked was E. Ness from Bad Boy/Making The Band
What is the best advise you have received while in the game?
Boss: Think long, not short. Don’t do some a snake move for immediate gratitude when you will need to work with that person again.
What’s next for the booking boss?
Boss: Something is always in the works .. Just came off a good weekend for Howard Homecoming, had successful events with the homie Ryan Leslie as well as an event with Joe Budden at DC’s version of King of Diamonds, Stadium Club