On this edition of Monday to Monday, host Mike Boyd sits down with Nicolette Carothers to discuss what it takes to make it behind the scenes in the music industry. Nicolette is the head of operations at T-Pain’s Nappy Boy Entertainment, and has been working closely with the artist over the past two years. Prior to her work with T-Pain, Nicolette was the project manager at Cinematic Music Group for three years (2016-2019), and worked in Business and Legal Affairs at Universal Music Group from 2013 to 2016. Needless to say, Nicolette has years of experience in the music industry, and during the course of their nearly 30-minute conversation, Boyd and Nicolette covered the different elements of being on T-Pain’s team, the sacrifices it takes to be a music manager, T-Pain’s future projects, and so much more.
A Look Into T-Pain's World With Nicolette Carothers
The head of operations at Nappy Boy Entertainment sits down with Mike Boyd
Checking in from Mexico City, Boyd starts the conversation asking Nicolette about the ups and downs of music management, and what it has been like working on T-Pain’s management team. “I’m the head of T-Pain’s operations (Nappy Boy Entertainment), and we agree that he is self-managed in a way. There’s myself and Los—shoutout to Los because I definitely couldn’t do this without him—he is our core! We do management functions for Pain, list the pros and cons of opportunities, and at the end of the day he decides whether he wants to do something or not. We’ll always have our opinions, but he makes his own decisions. That doesn’t always work for every artist, but for Pain specifically, I think that is what he has needed for the past few years.
As far as highs and lows—with highs it’s when we are winning and reaching our internal goals. We set those goals for ourselves, and I think that is important when it comes to expectations. So far we have been meeting those goals! When it comes to lows—management itself is a lifestyle. You blur a lot of lines because you are sacrificing your personal life for this position. You are essentially on-call 24/7, work on weekends and holidays, and take calls at dinner. It’s kind of tough, but it’s what you sign up for. Oh and stress too!”
Noting how Nappy Boy Entertainment is having a great year with the success of T-Pain's “I Like Dat” (a collaboration with Kehlani), and his many upcoming projects, Boyd asks how 2021 has been for both T-Pain and the team. “Around January of last year, Pain and I broke out and assembled a team. So it’s Pain, myself, and two other people helping us,” she tells Boyd before detailing how this year in particular has been different for the artist.
“T-Pain is fully independent now, and he finally owns his masters. Weirdly enough to say—Covid was a blessing in disguise because it gave us time to really sit as this was happening and build our plan and how we wanted to position ourselves as a team. Pain is fully hands on now—Not that he wasn’t before, but I don’t think he was given the opportunity to be because of how quickly everything was moving. T-Pain is a marketing genius. Just look at the DM video! He texted it to us and we were like “where did you come up with this?!”
Be sure to check out the rest of Boyd and Nicolette’s interview above, and follow Nicolette on Instagram.