Social media makes exposure a cinch for aspiring artists, which could end up hurting the industry. In many cases, the real artists are overshadowed by trending internet sensations that may have just one or two hits in their arsenal. Who has the most catchy and outrageous sound or concept? That’s who seems to be getting the record deals, where true artists have to work twice as hard to obtain the same thing, especially in the hip-hop and R&B scene.
That’s where Crystal Carr of Los Angeles, CA, founder of Diamond Development VIP comes in.
Crystal Carr on why she founded this unique business in 2016.
Looking at the state of the industry, what’s lacking, and having insight on the proper influence to make a change in the industry. Everyone sees the flaws but no one is taking big enough steps in the right direction. I developed the right connections to create a network that turned into a business. I let every bad contract, job experience, business relationship, etc., influence my business plan. I hate excuses in business, so I made a list of every excuse in the book that people usually have and made a way around it. I figured out what was missing in the new talent being released and strategized new ways of development. Literally spent time getting it down to a science. Once I knew that it was profitable and had the ability to sustain its presence in the industry, making the investment was not a problem. The overall vision is to take this business model and turning it into an empire. Developing and breaking talent from within. Having a roster of artists for labels to shop from, developing labels’ new talent and one hit wonders and being the industry’s top resource.
Diamond Development offers an array of services that are geared toward developing and breaking talent into the industry. Artist development, exclusive management, executive production, production services, campaign management, label meetings, mass marketing services, lifestyle development, life coaching and health services are all included services.
One of the most underrated aspects of the industry is the artist’s mental. Again, with social media being the driving force of today’s society, everyone has a voice on a large platform. One minor slip-up by an artist could be magnified into something 10 times worse within 10 minutes on the web. Since we’re all humans and we aren’t immortal, the chance of ‘slipping up’ is almost imminent.
Carr’s resolution for the growing mental health issue in the industry.
For some odd reason, mental health was shunned in entertainment and now the industry is in a world of chaos because of it. A lot of people in the industry are suffering from some sort of mental illness and having breakdowns that tarnish their image. We’ve gotten to a point where it’s okay to publicly cry for help mentally while the world watches and does absolutely nothing. Artists suffer from bipolar disorder, depression, PTSD, and have fallen victim to domestic violence in relationships which affects them personally and professionally. As consumers, we want music to reflect what we’re going through or have been through, all for the sake of ‘good music.’ All while the artist struggles with a real problem.
“To help remedy this problem, I decided to implement services to help and give them an outlet to turn to. They don’t have to hide what’s going on, and they know it actually will be okay and nothing is wrong with them. A healthy and sane artist can produce quality music too. I personally am one of many that suffer from anxiety so it means something to provide those services for them.” Carr also mentioned that she doesn’t have kids but treats her business and her artists like her own.
How long her services last and where she envisions her artists after they’ve completed her program.
We don’t offer packages and most of our artists are on long-term contracts. We are driven by results and the only time we’ll negotiate something short-term is if we absolutely need a trial run. Sometimes you have to weigh that relationship and ensure that it’ll work. Artist development and executive coaching is an 18-month contracted service. Within those 18 months, the artist will be fine-tuning their craft, enhancing and developing new skills and transforming from an artist to a recording artist.
I see my artist in a new space of accomplishment after they’re done with this training. They are on the right path towards their personal goals, operating as a business and continuing to uphold themselves to the VIP standard because through this process, they’ve been ‘raised right.’
Carr on being an African-American woman in the entertainment industry and what she would’ve done different while on the road to her business.
I haven’t really had to deal with any bad business due to being an African-American woman in the industry yet. I say yet because I know that it does happen. However, I think that type of adversity also gas to do with the standard you hold yourself to and every encounter I’ve had, people get the hind that I’m a woman of business. Clients take well to meI work with a variety of different genres leading to me having to deal with a variety of people from different places and backgrounds.
That is where past job experiences came in. I was an investigator at one point and worked a few customer service jobs. I am well-versed and can work with anyone. I don’t get the backlash of being what you see and what you think you know. My employees are from different backgrounds as well, so when people look at the diamond Development VIP brand, they are likely to see people that look like them. Just because we are black-owned doesn’t mean we have to be black employed.
That is where past job experiences came in. I was an investigator at one point and worked a few customer service jobs. I can work with anyone. I don’t get the backlash of being what you see and think you know. My employees are from different backgrounds as well, so when people look at the Diamond Development VIP brand you’re likely to see people that look like you. Just because we are black-owned doesn’t mean we have to be black employed.
There are certain people that I wouldn’t have worked with. I would have established my line of credit a long time ago and I would have moved back to California sooner. other than that, everything else influenced the current state of this empire known as Diamond Development VIP.