How do you presently earn money?
From cd sales and digital downloads of my music, from merchandise sold at shows or through my website, from live performances. Importantly, I think, trying to make sure that overheads never exceed potential returns on my music endeavours.
What are your responsibilities?
At the moment, with Gotye, I've been able to hand over responsibility for bookings, tour planning, point-of-contact for career opportunities and just general "representation" over to Danny Rogers at Lunatic Entertainment. As I wrote before, up until the start of 2007 I was doing everything from writing, recording, organising manufacture of CDs, sending out promo copies and organising press, maintaining my website and MySpace page, as well as all my own tax. My father is a gun with my day-to-day bookkeeping, so he helps make sure my books are always in order (and he also takes care of my direct sales of CDs and merchandise through www.gotye.com), and I have professional lawyers and accountants to take care of the serious tax and legal formalities that come up when running a music business (I have two companies, one for releasing my records and one for touring with Gotye).
That means that now my responsibilities are more focussed on writing music, arranging my live shows, travelling for touring, and overseeing all the people who represent me to make sure that the way they're "taking care of business" is always cool. I still maintain my own website and YouTube page, and have a lot of email to attend to daily. But I have to have someone help me out to maintain my MySpace, Facebook and Bebo pages.
What are the best and worst aspects of your job?
There's always work to do, and I'm a bit of a workaholic so I don't know when to take a break sometimes. But "work" is mostly creative, or admin that's in aid of creative pursuits, so that's the positive.
What are three essential attributes someone in your position needs?
In my specific position: organisation, organisation, organisation. I sometimes wish I was more flippant and could just fob off some of the opportunities that come up, or be so disinterested in business/tax/music industry practices that I simply have to trust other people who represent me to look after my best interests. But the fact is that I want to be across everything, keep learning, keep finding new and creative ways to release my music and present it to people, and this means I'm always balancing my time between heaps of admin and "need-to-do-this-for-my-career" typa stuff with my intense desire to spend more time just collecting records, writing songs, trying out cool production ideas and generally staying at home and making music.
I feel that, over the last two years, although the learning curve for me has been fantastic, perhaps I've pushed the balance a little too far towards the admin/organisation side of things and not left enough room for myself to be creative. I'm hoping to change that in coming months.
What sort of creative projects are you involved in outside your main profession?
Well, "inside" my main profession I also write/record/tour/co-manage/independently release music with The Basics. So that keeps me pretty busy. Between both projects I don't get a lotta time "outside". I like to spend time with my girlfriend Tash as much as possible. But since she's a muso too sometimes it can feel a little like "music overload".
If you, in your position now, were interviewing/auditioning your younger self when you just starting out, would you have given yourself a break? Why / why not?
For sure. Because I'm, like, really, really...really good looking.
What do the next 12 months hold for you?
Touring to Europe (Belgium, Holland, Germany, France, UK) and Japan in support of my first Gotye record release in those territories. The Basics will also be releasing a new album and touring outback Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory, as well as high schools in many states of Australia. Aside from that I hope to write new songs, record as much as possible...and see my girlfriend more! Oh...and learn rock'n'roll dancing.