Today we’d like to introduce you to Leilani Neder.
Leilani, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I have always been passionate about music and the arts, but it wasn’t until college that I finally understood my purpose. I’m originally from Los Angeles but had the opportunity to live in North Carolina during my high school and college years because my father served in the Marine Corps. After starting college at East Carolina University, I was quickly surrounded by so many talented people.
I had finally found refugee in my fellow music-loving peers. And while I have a passion for music, I was not an artist myself. Witnessing my friends pursue their music careers inspired me to lend a hand. I began making flyers for their shows, booking venues, sitting in on studio sessions, recruiting artists, and soon found myself heading a music group.
From then on, artist development and management had become the mission. I knew that if I really wanted something to come from this, I’d need to move back home to Los Angeles. After moving back home, I landed a position interning with an indie label. Over the years of rocking with them, I was promoted to Artist Liaison. I learned so much from working with their amazing artists and producers. I started creating my own connections and soon felt comfortable venturing back on my own.
I began collaborating on projects with various DJs and industry professionals. I fell deeper in love with becoming the conduit for other people’s dreams. I now have a handful of artists that trust my work and dedication. I currently manage singer/songwriter Ella Rogue and R&B/Hip Hop duo Compton Brown. And like many Angelenos, I have more than one hustle. Alongside managing my artists, I also am the School Operations Manager for The Conservatory of Performing Arts in West LA.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
As amazing as this journey’s been, it hasn’t always been a smooth ride… especially when you decide to do things independently. I’ve always said my biggest problem was that I have million dollar ideas on a five dollar budget.
Sometimes it takes a little longer to get the budget to shoot a music video or to complete photoshoots, but we always make it happen. I’ve learned never to settle and make the moves necessary to get to the finish line. Other struggles I’ve come across along the way are ever growing relationships with people that forced me to adjust.
From team members moving across the country or artists deciding to pursue other life goals… it can, at times, be difficult to stay focused. But when one door closes another one really does open.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
Tusko Music Management is an independently run artist development and management company. We assist artists in finding their voice and helping them grow their brand.
As an indie company, we wear multiple hats. We assist our artists in their day-to-day activities, booking venues, teaming them up with producers, creating visuals and more. I personally specialize in working with R&B and Hip Hop artists.
I’m most proud of the relationships we’ve established in the industry and the music we’ve been able to share with the world.
I believe what truly sets us apart from others is our drive and passion to create amazing music. Everyone affiliated with Tusko Music has a real love and hunger for being apart of something bigger than themselves.
What were you like growing up?
I grew up in a military family, so my environment was always changing. My family and I traveled all over the country and spent many years overseas. Growing up in the military you learn to quickly adjust to change. Every three years I was the “new girl” like clockwork.
But I played a lot of sports which helped me always meet new people quickly. High school was when I really began to step up. I managed sports teams, clubs and started working as soon as I turned fifteen. I don’t think I ever had time to find myself in any real cliques. I hung with athletes and the marching band. I spent a lot of time discovering new music… constantly going through different phases.
One year, I was really into alternative rock then classical. Another year I’m buffering up on my jazz knowledge… then taking a deep dive into the world of hip hop. Though the world around me was always changing, music was always my constant.
- Website: www.tuskomgmt.com
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/tuskomgmt
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/TuskoMusicManagement
The House of Blues Music Forward Foundation, The Curious Cat Project, Darren Brown, Jake Russell