Like many people in the music industry, Scott Mesiti grew up playing in bands and was fortunate enough to tour and record internationally.
Always adopting the independent DIY approach, during his time playing in bands Scott learned the basics of the music industry and in particular booking shows.
Fast-forward many years and Scott has owned and operated festivals as well as managing several artists. In 2015, Scott started MJR Presents with UK-based promoter Richard Buck; in August 2019, Scott and Rich sold MJR to TEG, but Scott remains as Head of Touring for the MJR division.
Ahead of his appearance at Australian Music Week, we have a quick chat with Scott.
Tell us about yourself – who you are and what you do?
Sure thing, I’m Head of Touring Australia for MJR Presents who are part of TEG Live. We predominately tour international acts throughout Australia and New Zealand such as 50 Cent, Hans Zimmer, Sia, Steel Panther, Sevendust, Rita Ora, The Jacksons and many more.
We also do a handful of outdoor events such as One Love Festival and Summer Series, and Port Macquarie Beer & Cider Festival. Typically, a self-confessed workaholic like everyone I know in the music industry but I think that comes with the territory.
What will you be presenting as a speaker at Australian Music Week?
I’m part of a very interesting panel, Hypothetically Live, where we will dig into a scenario building a team around a band and how it will play out to get them into a ‘sold-out’ situation. I’m sitting with some seriously good company, so I might have a notepad with me to take some notes.
Similarly, what do you hope to take away from Australian Music Week to enhance your own career?
I’m based in Port Macquarie, so these events are always great to get out from behind the emails and see the familiar faces you work with all year as this industry is very relationship driven.
You always manage to meet new people and build new networks as well and we’re always on the lookout for great, up and coming artists to fill support slots for the international acts we tour. The idea is to try and see a year's worth of gigs in two-three days.
Within your own field of expertise in the music industry, what issues and challenges are you currently facing?
The live sector is highly competitive and relationships certainly come into play a lot. Customer experience is always a big one.
We spend a lot of time fielding enquiries from people who have bought tickets to our shows through unauthorised channels and while that side of the industry is certainly getting cleaned up, it’s always difficult to see people overpaying for tickets or worse buy something invalid.
Your favourite band/ artist at the moment?
Blanco Brown. He’s song 'The Git Up' is on high rotation at my house thanks to my kids.
An emerging or unsigned act you think people should be listening to?
I really like a song from a young singer from Cairns called Jelly Oshen. He has a song called 'Garden Of Love' I’ve had on repeat.
While you're at the conference, where would we find you when you're not presenting?
More than likely at El Sol eating Mexican and watching showcases.