Name: Sami Slovy
Company/Organization: Neko Case
Bands worked with: Preservation Hall Jazz Band, New Orleans Bingo! Show
FEMMUSIC: How did you become a tour manager?
SS: I started working in the music industry in New Orleans when I was still in school. One job led to another and I developed specific skills in the industry working with artists, vendors, production elements, and live events. I worked my way up to work national events and did a lot of travel and networking. After working with New Orleans acts, I had the opportunity to work with Neko Case and seized it immediately.
FEMMUSIC: What are the biggest challenges of being a tour manager?
SS: You have to be ready for anything 24-hours a day. There’s always a curve ball thrown your way and you have to be ready to adapt and solve problems quickly while maintaining a positive attitude and staying calm.
FEMMUSIC: What challenges does being a woman tour manager present?
SS: Luckily, the industry has come a long way and there are a lot of awesome female tour managers, so most of the time venue staff and promoters are pretty awesome and treat you equally.
Some bands that are all male will not hire a female TM, so that’s one challenge.
Being a female production manager / stage manager poses an additional set of challenges, as production is still male-dominated.
FEMMUSIC: As a woman in the music industry, have you been discriminated against?
SS: In my younger years, yes. Especially in production positions. There are certain regions of the country and world that are not tolerant of gender equality. You just have to be patient and be yourself, and when the offender realizes you know your stuff, they usually back down.
FEMMUSIC: What one thing would you like to change about the music industry itself?
SS: Figure out a way to have affordable health insurance for all of the independent contractors!