Interview: Dariusz Stelmach, A&R @ CHAPTER EIGHT

4 min read
Nov 3, 2023 1:42:39 PM

Blog Interview Social Media Video - Dariusz StelmachWe're excited to chat to Dariusz Stelmach, A&R at CHAPTER EIGHT, as he shares insights from his journey in the music industry so far. From useful learnings, to top tips and professional insights, this a great read for both aspiring artists and anyone considering launching their own label alike.

Interview with Dariusz Stelmach:

Question: What initially drew you to the music industry and working at a record label?

Dariusz: I was initially drawn to the music industry due to my deep passion for music. The ability to connect people with their favorite tunes and artists was a compelling aspect. Working at a record label felt like a way to be directly involved in shaping and promoting the music that resonates with people on a personal level. It's a field that combines creativity and business, allowing me to contribute to the industry's growth while staying close to my love for music.

Question: What's the best piece of advice you've ever received in your career?

Dariusz: The best advice I've received in my career is to "embrace continuous learning." It reminds me to stay open to new ideas, technologies, and perspectives, which is crucial in the ever-evolving field I work in. This mindset helps me adapt and grow professionally.

Question: What's your ultimate guilty pleasure song?

Dariusz: Vengaboys - We like to Party!

Question: Is there a specific piece of advice you'd give yourself back when you first started in the industry?

Dariusz: If I could give myself advice when I started in the industry, it would be to trust my instincts and stay open to change. Embrace challenges as opportunities for growth and never stop learning. Building strong relationships in the industry is as important as the work itself. Stay true to your passion and maintain a healthy work-life balance to sustain your creativity and enthusiasm over the long haul.

Question: Can you share a memorable or defining moment in your career that had a significant impact on you?

Dariusz: A defining moment in my career was when I successfully launched some songs, and it received widespread acclaim. It reaffirmed my belief in the power of hard work and innovation in the industry. This achievement inspired me to continue striving for excellence in promoting and supporting talented artists.

Question: If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?

Dariusz: If I could have any superpower, I would choose the ability to instantly acquire knowledge and skills. This power would enable me to continually adapt, learn, and assist people more effectively, fostering a better understanding of the world and its challenges, ultimately contributing to positive change and progress.

Question: What qualities do you look for in an artist when considering signing them to your label?

Dariusz: When considering artists for my label, I look for a unique and authentic sound, a strong work ethic, the ability to adapt and evolve, a dedicated fan base, and a collaborative spirit. It's crucial that their values align with the label's mission, and they demonstrate a commitment to their craft and career. Additionally, a compelling live performance and a clear vision for their musical journey are essential factors in the decision-making process.

Question: What are the common mistakes artists make when approaching record labels?

The main ones would be:

  • Lack of a clear identity or unique sound.
  • Sending unsolicited, generic submissions.
  • Focusing solely on major labels.
  • Not doing thorough research on the label's roster and values.
  • Ignoring the importance of networking and building relationships in the industry.

To succeed, artists should work on developing a distinctive style, target labels that align with their genre and goals, and invest in building meaningful connections within the industry.

Question: How do you handle the delicate process of giving creative feedback to artists?

Dariusz: Giving creative feedback to artists is a delicate process. I approach it with empathy and respect, emphasizing the positive aspects of their work before addressing areas for improvement. I aim to be specific and constructive, focusing on actionable suggestions rather than vague criticism.

Open and honest communication is key, and I encourage a collaborative dialogue to ensure the artist feels heard and valued. Ultimately, the goal is to help artists grow and develop their craft while maintaining a positive working relationship.

Question: How do you gauge an artist's potential for longevity in the music industry?

Dariusz: I gauge an artist's potential for longevity by assessing their adaptability, commitment, and originality. Longevity often depends on an artist's ability to evolve with changing trends while staying true to their unique style. A solid work ethic, consistent output, and a growing fan base are also indicators of staying power.

Additionally, their ability to connect with audiences emotionally and create music with enduring appeal can contribute to a lasting career in the music industry.

Question: What are the qualities you look for in an artist's demo or EP before considering signing them?

Dariusz: When considering an artist's demo or EP, I look for:

  • Originality: A unique sound or perspective.
  • Quality Production: Well-produced tracks.
  • Consistency: A cohesive style across the demo or EP.
  • Strong Lyrics: Meaningful and relatable lyrics.
  • Market Potential: A clear target audience.
  • Work Ethic: Dedication and a readiness to collaborate.
  • Performance Abilities: Potential for live shows.

These qualities help ensure a good fit for the label and the artist's potential for success.

Question: How does LabelRadar help the music discovery process for you?

Dariusz: LabelRadar has made being proactive in finding new artists and music way easier for us, being able to filter by location and genre and blast through a heap of tracks in one sitting is great, being able to skip, shortlist and review and then message has been a game changer for us. Being able to see a brief overview of an artist's DSP, social stats etc as well once we like music can help us make an informed decision.

Question: Which artists have you signed from LabelRadar?

Dariusz: Foulds, Justin Irby, Jake Silva, Aless Vanco, Nyron and many more...

Question: How does LabelRadar help the music discovery process for you?

Dariusz: LabelRadar greatly aids in music discovery for my label. It provides a platform to efficiently listen to submissions, connect with emerging artists, and discover fresh talent.

If you don’t already have a LabelRadar account, you can sign up here.