Rock & Roll Hall of Famer Nancy Wilson has launched a new management company, Roadcase Management, with first client, Portland, Oregon-based singer/songwriter Madisenxoxo.
The Heart co-founder and guitarist tells Billboard that she isn’t worried about balancing her music and her new management role, adding she feels a passion to extend a hand to those coming after her. “I believe rock music still has such a meaningful place in the world and I’m ready to go to bat for the new generation of inspired talent,” she says. “I want to do this because in today’s world new music needs more of a fighting chance to get through to the fans despite the compartmentalized markets.”
Wilson, who holds the titles of Roadcase founder/president and CEO, instantly connected with Madisenxoxo’s sound. “I fell in love with Madisenxoxos music the first time I heard it,” she says. “There is something really competent and surprising in both her writing, production and delivery. For me it feels like a whole new sound we’ve all been waiting to hear. It borrows from a few classic sound genres that evoke a new cultural context at a time when, I think, the culture is ready for it.”
Wilson’s husband and former label executive Geoff Bywater serves as co-founder/president and CEO, while Julia Bywater is vp/chief marketing officer.
Geoffrey Bywater, Bywater’s son who serves as the company’s head of A&R and management, became aware of Madisenxoxo through another artist, McCall, he worked with. “The first demo Madisen sent over was ‘You’re So Pretty.’ Man, the song knocked me out. The blend of genres and storytelling is something I’ve only seen true innovative artists do, and the fact that it’s only been her and her partner [producer] Josh [Horine] is wild.”
“You’re So Pretty,” which comes out later this week, is featured on Madisenoxo’s EP, Mothership, to be released through a distribution deal with Pack Music on April 21. “When we were making all these songs, we were exploring different genres and ideas,” Madisenxoxo said in a statement. “We weren’t limited by any certain sounds. Somehow it ended up being cohesive together in a really cool way that I didn’t expect. I think it was really good for me to branch out and lose focus—in a good way. It enabled us to find sounds that we wouldn’t have been able to find otherwise.”
Wilson says she plans to add more acts to Roadcase’s roster but is in no rush: “Developing a roster will take time as we intend to stick to quality over quantity and seek only the right artists for the right reasons.”