If you build it, they will come. Kevin Costner mighta been referring to a baseball diamond in a corn field but CEO Jacqueline Best and her partner Chris ‘The Glove’ Taylor are referring to Predominant Studios. Jacqueline Best is said to be the next up-and-coming music mogul. She is also one of the recipients of North America’s Top 40 under 40 and will accept her award in New York on June 30, 2022. Having already signed musicians as Country artists’ Bryce Allan and Jason Kirkness, Hip Hop Artist Mr. ESQ, and more. They’re based in British Columbia’s lower mainland and are experiencing extraordinary growth in 2022.
If you think you need to move to Toronto to make it in the music industry, rest assured, that the rumor is false. This is the West Coast baby and we do things differently over here. We are trend setters in our own right, with film, with tourism, with culture and in music. Predominant Studios might be the new kid on the block but they bring a wealth of experience with them. Jacqueline Best is also an artist and musician and wants to offer help to all independent artists. Predominant Studios is offering expertise in the field as well as fostering an ethos that prioritizes assisting musicians in an industry where competition is stiff and there is little to no support for some artists. Although Predominant Studios has only been operating for a year, it has become a hub for many musicians and has already signed 17 music-recording artists and 45 independent artists with many more to come, growing its roster by 85% in just a year. Her company has been assisting talented musicians through creating fair contracts, music business consultations, and career coaching.
Chris “The Glove” Taylor, a pioneering multi-platinum producer, is Chief Technology Officer (CTO). Taylor has collaborated with huge names like Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg and a slew of other important industry figures and LA musicians. Taylor’s music productions include Ice-T’s ‘Reckless’, Dr. Dre’s song ‘Stranded On Death Row’ and Snoop Dogg’s ‘Doggy Dogg World’. Taylor has also served as Music Coordinator, Programmer, and Assistant Composer for the series American Soul, Played By Fame, Tiny & Toya, The Parkers, Frankie & Neffie and Monica’s Still Standing.
Not one to sit still, Jacqueline has also written a book entitled “So they say you can’t. SCREW THEM,” which will be released this year. In addition to publishing a magazine, Predominant Studios will also be turning into a full NFT label, so get to know them and say hello asap, so they can kickstart your music career.
I had the incredible joy and unique opportunity of speaking with Jacqueline Best recently and it was off the hook. Let’s drop the needle!
HNMAG “Congratulations on Predominant Studios. I know you’ve only been open for approx. a year but you’ve already experienced tremendous success. That’s so encouraging.”
JACQUELINE “It’s been wonderful. The outpour of support for a new generation of music – people are ready for it.”
HNMAG “Your studio takes on all genres of artists, from Country to Hip Hop. I believe I read that you have 18 artists currently signed?”
JACQUELINE “We do yes and we service about 45 independent artists as well. Although we sign artists, we also facilitate independent artists. Independent artists don’t get a lot of help in this industry, so we tailored our business model to ensure that we have services for them too. We can make them more successful and lead them to a more equitable future.”
HNMAG “When you do provide mentorship for independent artists, is it a collaborative effort between you and Chris ‘The Glove’ Taylor?”
JACQUELINE “We mentor and we coach together. Chris is our key technical officer and always ensures that we are exceeding the current expectations in the industry. He is also a mentor and coach to young kids down in California and teaches them positive steps forward in life through music.”
HNMAG “You were also a recording artist at one time. Are you still recording new music?”
JACQUELINE “No, unfortunately I had pneumonia 3-4 times over the last 10 years and it’s ruined my ability to breathe properly and to sing, so the best way I could keep pursuing my musical career was to create Predominant Studios to help others.”
HNMAG “Is your studio looking for new talent or are you looking for existing talent seeking a new direction/management?”
JACQUELINE “We look for all of it. We just had Dave Mustaine from Megadeth post on our Instagram, that we’re looking for a new current rock band and we’re starting to get some traction. We’re also open to artists that are stuck in not-so favourable contracts. We can definitely help to facilitate that. We currently have some headliners looking at our business process to help them renegotiate their business practice – we’re open to all of it.”
HNMAG “It would seem that you’re trying to prevent the too familiar contract horror stories that many bands have signed in the past. How do you find that line?”
JACQUELINE “From having so many friends in the music industry. It’s really unfortunate how major labels take advantage of artists. We treat each artist as a person and a business as well and you don’t give a business loan and expect 50-75 percent on return, so why would you do that with an artist? That’s how we based our business model. Number one – it’s fair, two – they’re people, three – they deserve their intellectual property. We may own master recordings in the beginning but we can facilitate other agreements, where they can own it 50/50 or work out a deal where they own all of it. Throughout the entire process we’re fair and we always put the artist first.”
HNMAG “I would imagine that those negotiations would result in retaining lawyers?”
JACQUELINE “Yes, we have entertainment lawyers, we have corporate lawyers that we work with. Every step of the way, it’s done properly and we’re all here for the right reasons. Even my lawyers know what is required of them and that they do not push/pressure the artist into making any agreements without coming to me first to ensure that it’s predominant.”
HNMAG “I would love to hear about your studio space/location. What can an artist expect when walking into your location?”
JACQUELINE “The current studio is 2500 sq. ft. It has 2 rooms and a recording cubicle for singers. We do have a brand new 9000 sq. ft. building being constructed and it will be our official headquarters. I haven’t revealed the location yet, but the foundation was recently poured. It will have 3 levels, a huge warehouse where we can film the music videos, seven recording studios with one that includes film scoring and podcasts. We’ll have baby grand pianos, the whole 9 yards. The new space will be state of the art and beautiful.”
HNMAG “I know that many music artists tend to gravitate toward Toronto to build their career. Was Toronto ever on the radar?”
JACQUELINE “I know Toronto is the hub of the music industry, however we have so many talented musicians in BC and on the island. We started Predominant Studios on Vancouver Island. West coast Canada doesn’t seem to get the same attention as eastern Canada, so we’re really focusing on west coast and BC musicians. Our location has been attracting attention globally, such as Scotland, England, Australia, Latin America. Having our studio in BC has been good for us.”
HNMAG “I know that Seattle is known for the grunge movement. Does West coast BC have its own flavour?”
JACQUELINE “It does. It’s definitely Hip Hop, Rap and Country. They are the three dominant genres here and our BC Hip Hop artists are becoming world renowned for their music. We’re shining a light on it. Vinyl is coming back, so we’re combining the two; Hip Hop with vinyl.”
HNMAG “Who would you say is the most exciting artist you’re currently working with?”
JACQUELINE “Right now we’re working with Hip Hop artist Mr. ESQ and Madchild and they’ve just released Rich Problems on April 21st. Madchild is an iconic BC rapper that was with Swollen Members and they’re doing very well. We also have 2 other Country music artists, Bryce Allan who has a single coming out ‘A Country Girl Can’. It’s going to be a hit! We also have Jason Kirkness that has a new single, ‘Anywhere the Night Goes’. It’s hit Spotify, and we’ll be having a big campaign starting in the next week followed by a new music video. It’s been trending in large numbers already.”
HNMAG “At Predominant Studios, do you really provide everything an artist is looking for?”
JACQUELINE “Absolutely, we provide the master recording process, from pre-production to post. We provide all the legal work behind the scenes, we do all the graphic designs, we do the coding, the printing, we get the vinyl cut – we’re a 360 -entertainment studio.”
HNMAG “Where do people get vinyl printed these days because it’s still a niche industry?”
JACQUELINE “There’s a few in North America but the demand for vinyl has turned around significantly and the turnaround time is 20-38 weeks for vinyl cutting. We have recently outsourced overseas and that has a 14-week turnaround. We are also going to be incorporating our own cutting facility into the new studio to be able to accommodate the needs within Canada and the US. We also have a new magazine coming out as well.”
HNMAG “Was the plan always so grand in scale or did it grow into it.”
JACQUELINE “Opening a record label in the middle of Covid, people thought we were a bit crazy but with Covid shutting everything down in that first year, it really gave me the opportunity to plan things really well. Slow and pro is how I like to put it (laughing). We didn’t intend for it to go so big but people have taken to us, so we’ve been adapting to the change and the growth. Our original business plan went from a 5 million 3 – year plan to a 10 million 7 – year plan and within these last 4-months, it’s really taken off.”
HNMAG “That’s quite an endeavor. Do you have an entire team working with you?”
JACQUELINE “Yes, we have a team of 14 and we’re currently hiring another 9 to help everything roll smoothly.”
HNMAG “How did your relationship with Chris ‘The Glove’ Taylor happen?”
JACQUELINE “I’d known some people from Death Row Records over the years and I used to travel to LA as a teen and had met them in the early days. We were following each other through mutual friends on Instagram. I was seeing what he’s doing and he’s been seeing what I’m doing, so we decided to try working together. He’s got the mixing, mastering and producing experience with Dr. Dre, Snoop Dog, Xzibit, Tiny, Toya, the list goes on and on. He helped produce, mix and master Dr. Dre’s 2001, the most iconic Hip Hop album out there. He’s very technical and loves all the recording equipment. He’s now helping Predominant to bridge into Web 3 in the NFT world, so we’ll be expanding into that area also.”
HNMAG “How did the attraction to NFT’s happen and your involvement in it?”
JACQUELINE “Chris is involved in the Web 3 world down in LA/Hollywood. It’s quite big for the arts and the music now and we want to be able to facilitate everyone. There’s the traditional way of selling records, streaming, physical sales but then there’s also the artists that are all about the Web 3 NFT’s, so we want to ensure that we’re accommodating their needs as well. If they want to buy tracks online through blockchain, they’ll be able to do so through Predominant.”
HNMAG “You must be on top of your research with the latest and greatest trends and music news. What would a typical day look like for you?”
JACQUELINE “I have 5 kids on top of what I do. I get up between 5-6 am, I go straight to the Billboard charts, I look at global sales and what’s charting that day/that hour. It’s how I’m able to forecast where music is going in the next 30-60 days. I can see what’s popular, what’s changing and what’s dying off after being up for a week. It’s how we’re able to keep our artists up to date and ensure that we’re hitting all the targets in the market. I spend 3 hrs./day looking at charts, another hour or 2 replying to emails/answering phone calls before going into the tech research with The Glove, with the NFT, Web 3 Blockchain. It’s a crazy day.”
Jacqueline told me her kids range in ages 6-16 and that they are all so supportive with her music company, they’re all music fans and they’re also learning alongside mom, what the music industry is all about. Predominant Studios has landed, so do not miss this golden egg opportunity to excel your music career to the next level and put more music artists in our own backyard in beautiful BC.