[media stories: 1993: english]

The Band's Luck

Article about Cecilie
taken from the Norwegian newspaper
AFTENPOSTEN, 1993-11-13.
English translation done by Paul Caspers.

Everyone dreams of becoming a star. And in order to climb up from the practice basement onto the stage lights, many get themselves a manager - like Cecilie Lykke.

Hi there, this is Børre Barsk, I'm calling for The Escaped Convicts, the new stars of Norwegian rock! Listen up...

There's no record company director or concert arranger that hasn't picked up the phone to meet an intrusive manager who screams through your ears: This band is the stuff!

Manager. It's the magic word for all the rockbands that have their eyes set on the future, MTV and white limos, but also to a regular concert job at the rock club. The image of a fat, mafia-like manager with a big sigar pointing at the dotted line on the million contract and says "just sign here, boys", it gives every band wet eyes. And it's not only The September that has one.

"Strong will and a lot of patience. Those are the requirements for being able to do a good job as a manager", explains Cecilie Lykke. As a spokesperson, guardian and "innpisker" for the Trondheim band Motorpsycho, the 26-year old has had her share of honor for her "clients" having become be the hottest name around in heavy rock. But then she waves dismissingly with her ring fingers; we shouldn't think it's just a matter of suddenly breaking through.

"It's about having good contacts, knowing people on all sides. And not in the last place it's essential to have a realistic view of what you can do for the band", she says. A manager that constantly bugs people with overblown praise for the bands virtuosity, usually doesn't come very far. Matter-of-factness and order are better.

With a background in concert arranging from the UFFA, the youth center in Trondheim, she started as a manager for Motorpsycho 3 years ago. Back then, no one outside the scene had heard of them, and while the band is starting their engines to travel towards greater heights, Cecilie can look in the rearview and confirm that luck doesn't await around the first corner.

"For most bands it's a great advantage to have someone at their side that at the same time is a bit on the outside, someone who's always there. I've spent and still spend many of my time calling. I don't know how many phone calls I've taken this and that way and back again, but in the first year I got an injury in my telefone hand", says the manager - who actually thinks manager is a silly word. And at any rate, the operator voice and optimism alone won't hold.

"I do everything. Except for playing. Everything that has to do with paper and money is my responsability, and over the past year both the amount of paper and money have grown a lot," she tells us. It's her that deals with the fees. Fees that gradually have grown from getting expenses covered to several ten thousand crowns for an night. With an annual !@#$ of several hundred thousand crowns, its's important to keep the banking in order.

"I also book concerts and plan travel routes. As a road manager - another dumb word - I also take care of all the practical things during the concert tours, make sure the hotel is booked and that we get to the right place at the right time, for example for soundchecks", she says and adds that before a concert, she has the same stage fears as the musicians.

But the mother figure that lets the boys sit on her lap to have their burp after beer and pizza at the venue, doesn't look much like Cecilie Lykke.
"That's the nice thing about the guys in Motorpsycho. They can also perform simple tasks by themselves."
"I do everything. Except for playing."

Yngve Ekern