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interview

Brontë Jane

Third Side Music

For over five years Brontë Jane has been the VP of A&R at independent publisher Third Side Music. Before that she acted as a music consultant, journalist/editor, played bass in a band or two, and went to film school.

Brontë Jane

Where are you based?

Los Angeles, CA

Where do you work? What do you do?

I do A&R at Third Side Music where I’m lucky enough to work with artists like BadBadNotGood, Blonde Redhead, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, SOFI TUKKER, Courtney Barnett, Beverly Glenn-Copeland, Amen Dunes, Helena Deland, etc.

What are you listening to?

Outside of our roster I’ve been loving Ana Roxanne, Drug Store Romeos, Cindy, Khotin, and Paradis Artificiel. Honestly also been on a real A.R. Kane kick recently… that ‘Lollita’ EP is seminal.

How do you discover new music?

All of the usual ways but I mostly love to go down internet rabbit holes via artists I already look to for inspiration. For example, what songs is Angel Bat Dawid playing on her monthly NTS show? Also… music lawyers are a very underrated A&R resource.

What formats do you usually listen to? LP, CD, Cassette, Digital, Streaming Services? Why?

I love liner notes and have a real affinity for vinyl/cassettes, but I have never been one to ‘collect’ anything. The same goes for books, films, art, etc. Anything in excess feels like excess to me, I guess? For example, I’ll give time and energy to a record but will know when it’s time to physically pass it on to a friend. A lot of my favorite records feel elastic in that way, like capsules in time; something I can always seek out again.

Where do you do most of your music listening?

When I was younger my mum and I would take (aimless) nighttime drives just so we could listen to Massive Attack, Bjork or Nine Inch Nails on full volume, so I still swear by listening in cars whenever possible. Otherwise I’ll alternate between my AIAIAI TMA-2 HD headphones, our Sonos system or our turntable / Bowers & Wilkins 606 series speakers set up.

How do you find and listen to pre-release music?

It’s mostly all via private links (Soundcloud, PromoJukeBox etc). Either I’ll be the one reaching out to a manager, lawyer, friend (or a random info@ email) to inquire about an artist project, or vice versa.

What are your frustrations with listening to music digitally? Any benefits?

The obvious benefits to digital listening are convenience and malleability, but often at the cost of a growing, embedded impatience in listeners (i.e. “skim” / “skip” culture). That being said, I definitely rely on said DSP accessibility for discovering music. For unreleased material / submissions, streaming links are key for the sake of ever-dwindling computer storage.

How do you keep track of everything you are listening to?

I have a dumb amount playlists predominantly on Spotify that I update daily. Usually they’re thrown together by mood, theme, release date, whatever. I keep track of everything by using headings/subheadings to organize by both month/year so it’s easy for me to find things later on. It’s nostalgic (and often cringey) to look back and have everything almost time stamped.

Byta – send & receive digital audio

With Byta you are in control of your music. Streams or downloads arrive in the 
format that your collaborators need, metadata keeps everything organized and files 
are always secure.

Explore our plans

“There’s always so much incredible music to go around, and I’d much rather trust that whatever label, publisher, etc is meant to be involved in a project… will be involved. The artist always knows best.”

Do you tip other people off to new music? How?

As often as I can. Sharing music / making mixes for people is such a great way to communicate. I don’t love the territorial ethos of “finders’ keepers”. There’s always so much incredible music to go around, and I’d much rather trust that whatever label, publisher, etc is meant to be involved in a project… will be involved. The artist always knows best. As an A&R, you can only hope that your conversation resonated in a genuine and impactful way.

Anything you want to “promote”?

Helena Deland’s “Truth Nugget”, Beverly Glenn-Copeland’s “River Dreams”, Matthew Tavares’ ‘Mississauga’ & KAZU’s live version of ‘Unsure In Waves’.

"The obvious benefits to digital listening are convenience and malleability, but often at the cost of a growing, embedded impatience in listeners (i.e. “skim” / “skip” culture)."

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