Allan Siema is an artist manager at Simple Complex Music. Allan has been working in the music business for the last 15 years in public relations, artist management, live event management, social media management and artist brand strategy. Additionally, he runs a music website, On The Come Up, that champions new music and sounds from across the globe.

Here's our recent chat with Allan to discuss his favourite campaigns of 2020 and talk about the overlaps between visual creativity and music.

I’m currently working as an artist manager for SHAI SEVIN, Gabby Wilson & Sion Vesill. I am also working in artist development of Rachel Huggins, CHOZE , FRNDS AS CMPNY and scouting talent for Fave Sounds.

CHECK OUT

Creatively at the moment I’m loving Arlo Parks. Arlo Parks is truly an artist of our time. Out of the fire rose a phoenix that descended upon us to give us great music. She keeps delivering a mixture of great music, great artwork direction and just a vulnerability yet mysterious presence. She straddles indie, alternative, soul and modern-day blues in her unique way. She has this endearing voice that seems to just suck you in and keeps you locked in! Her collaboration with Glass Animals called Tangerine is fire!

FAVOURITE VIDEO

My all-time favourite music video is Smooth Criminal by the undisputed KING OF POP, Michael Jackson. I remember watching this video and being absolutely enthralled by the cinematography, choreography and just greatness involved in the video. I loved the outfits and the attitude of it. I enjoyed the detail and the overall execution of it. I used to watch it over and over in awe. The music was great too! It was like going to the movie to watch a blockbuster movie.

BEST ARTWORK

I’ve always loved the album art for Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On just because of its honest simplicity and the ability to capture the times in which he lived. The use of the colour palettes to send a message of solidarity for those caught in the wars waged by the star-spangled banner. Less is more!

CAMPAIGN OF 2020

The best creative campaign of 2020 was been Lady Gaga’s Chromatica album release. Lady Gaga is just different from the rest. Her visuals are always spectacular and her attack is always unique! She has this fresh approach to everything that she does. Timeless in art, music and visuals.

BEST COLLABORATION

The most recent brand collab that caught my eye was Celeste X John Lewis. I have to say that marrying her extraordinary and quintessentially classic voice with one of Britain’s well known brands was just magic after the year we have had. At best soothing, inviting and hope driven! This song lives rent-free in my head.

VIDEO OF 2020

For me the most creative and original music video of the year is by Ragz Originale Ring Out directed by Florian Joahn. I discovered this video on my Twitter timeline and the way it has been shot and executed is nothing short of amazing. Why doesn’t this video have 1 million yet! The creativity is just on another level! The song is vibrant and just right! Round of applause. I want to see acts like this getting more support on bigger platforms. Creativity over mediocrity.

LOGO LOVE

I wish I’d designed the artist logo for Wu-Tang. One of the most iconic hip hop groups that have captivated generations. From New York to the world. All I can say is Wu-Tang Forever!

GO FOLLOW

The one artist you should follow on Instagram is Tierra Whack. She is stylistically unique and carries great energy. Her posts are engaging and you can see that she doesn’t take herself too seriously. Great aesthetics and colours. A pivotal artist that you should definitely lock into! 

ICONIC

The most iconic music photograph is when Ella Fitzgerald & Marilyn Monroe sat together in perhaps one of the worst times for black people to exist in America. I love that they are smiling and happy in the photo. They represent the hope of Martin Luther King’s I have a dream speech and shows that we are one!

Creative Corner, in association with The MMF