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INDEPENDENT WOMEN:
ALEX KEAGUE-DAVIES
11/27/18

General Manager, Matador

Alex Keague-Davies joined Beggars label Matador as U.K. General Manager earlier in August after serving as international project manager at PIAS. In her new role, she leads a team that oversees artists and campaigns outside of Matador’s home in North America, covering strategy for each artist and the label as a whole. Projects this year include Interpol’s return with Marauder, which hit #6 on the U.K. charts. The band is currently on a European tour, which included two nights at London’s Royal Albert Hall in November.

Kurt Vile’s latest record, Bottle It In, has been “received amazingly well across the board, and rightfully so,” adds Keague-Davies, “and we’ve got so much more to come on this campaign through next year.” She also highlights the boygenius EP—a Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus collaboration “that is both beautiful and inspiring”—and the arrival of a Steve Gunn album in January.

What challenges does Keague-Davies face while working in today’s independent sector? “It’s been said plenty of times, but we are in a time where there is so much music readily available to people, specifically so much new music, and so many ways to discover it,” she answers. “That has its huge advantages, of course, but the challenge is then how to stand out, how to be heard above all the noise, and then, perhaps most importantly, how to sustain that.

“The exciting thing is there are more ways to do this than ever before, and there’s opportunities to do it on a global scale, but the challenge of building and sustaining a fanbase is not always the easiest to navigate and needs careful attention for every artist and campaign.” Continuing to be “forward-thinking, adaptable and creative” is key to overcoming that challenge, she adds.

Aside from new music and artists, the thing that’s exciting right now in the wider business is the continued drive for inclusivity and diversity, according to Keague-Davies. “There’s a growing amount of support available. I’m personally happy to be a part of a few groups and networks specifically geared towards women which offer advice, support and mentoring, from those starting out to those who’ve been working in this industry for a long time, and I’d encourage as many women as possible to get involved.”

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