Jenny Powers: “Fear can talk you out of the things that are meant for you”

Sometimes to rise above adversity we need a hand up and we should be more willing to accept help. Utilizing the power of gratitude and being thankful for the blessing in our lives. Even if the only thing you can do is be thankful for in that moment is the breath you are breathing. The […]

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Sometimes to rise above adversity we need a hand up and we should be more willing to accept help. Utilizing the power of gratitude and being thankful for the blessing in our lives. Even if the only thing you can do is be thankful for in that moment is the breath you are breathing.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Many of us now have new challenges that come with working from home, homeschooling, and sheltering in place.

As a part of our series about how busy women leaders are addressing these new needs, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jenny Powers, a music lover, avid supporter of Girls Rock Camp, champion for independent musicians and co-founder and President of Blue Avenue Music Group . She is constantly studying the ever-changing music industry, while consistently and effectively refining her methods and services to help bands achieve their goals and build a solid, sustainable business foundation for their careers.

Jenny’s social media marketing campaigns have led to chart topping albums on Billboard, iTunes, and Apple Music.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

Thank you for having me. I grew up in a home filled with music. It was either on the radio or me and my siblings practicing piano, flute, guitar, and trumpet. My siblings went on to be touring musicians and I went into legal studies. I started managing my brother’s band TreeHouse! and his solo project Positive J, laying the business foundations, streamlining royalties, getting the trademarks in place, monetizing the music, landing sponsorships, and streamlining their merchandise.

A friend and I were helping a band through some technical issues. She brought expertise on the touring and day to day management side and I on the business management side. We saw the value each of us brought to the situation and we realized that other bands and musicians needed what we could offer. So we began Blue Avenue Music Group.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you started at your company?

Have you ever had a full circle moment where you realize you just leveled up and things were going to be different? It wasn’t being part of a team that reached album charting success on Billboard, iTunes, or Apple Music and it wasn’t the airline sponsorship I had lined up for TreeHouse! that allowed me to come to this realization, but it came in the form of a DM in Facebook messenger.

When I started managing TreeHouse! full time I had no real music industry knowledge, but a good grasp of creating and laying general business foundations, so I bought a book called How To Make It in the New Music Business by Ari Herstand and used it to build out the band’s business plan.

Fast Forward to 2019. I was learning music business focused digital advertising so that we could provide added services to grow Blue Avenue Music Group’s client fan bases. Ari Herstand had linked up with hip-hop artist Lucidious and they were offering a course on Streaming and Instagram Growth for Ari’s Take Academy. In April that year, I decided to add it to my quiver of tools and I joined the Facebook group they had set up. This group allowed me to do what I love. I was actively helping indie artists from all over the world create targets, navigate the Facebook manager, come up with ad creatives, and I was able to encourage them on their musical journey. I was content.

In May, I traveled to New Orleans with my husband for a conference. It was hot, I was tired, and I think the hurricanes I’d been drinking were settling in. We decided to cool down in the Cathedral. We took in all the beauty of this place and finally sat down for what seemed like an hour. I closed my eyes and began visioning all the things I wanted to accomplish in my business. I was speaking them into fruition and before we left I asked that I would be given a sign that everything I wanted would come to be.

In the brisk walk from the Cathedral to our hotel, I received a DM in Facebook messenger from Ari Herstand and Lucidious. “Hey Jenny! First off, thank you for being so awesome in the ATA group! You’re really helping so many people out with your ongoing encouragement and support. Your advice is always right on and we really appreciate how active you are.“ They went on to ask if I would moderate the Facebook group. Wow, the guy who wrote the book on how to make it in the music industry was reaching out to me! The same book I used to layout business plans for my clients. I agreed and Lucidious messaged me “Welcome to the team.” I knew I was doing great things for my clients, but it was this moment that I realized others were noticing too and I was going to be a part of something bigger than what I had envisioned at the Cathedral moments earlier.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

Yeah. Personally, I support and am active in programs like Southern Girls Rock and Roll Camp, Carolina Youth Action Project, and Girls Rock Charleston that foster ideas of social change in valuing and voicing equality of women, girls, and the LGBTQ community through activities that encourage critical thinking, social justice principles, and teamwork.

At Blue Avenue Music Group, I’m working on several projects with artists like Lucidious, Tobyraps, Kult Krimes, Dolche, and producer Chris DiCola. I’ve also been supporting some new music industry tech launches. The first is which helps independent artists with advertising by creating pixeled deep links and tracking analytics for ad campaigns. The other is an app called NVOKO that will help artists who collaborate on tracks and projects with legal contracts, splits, payments, and all the unsexy stuff on the legal side of making music.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

That’s tough. I am lucky to have a great support system in my husband, Chris, who loves me through this crazy life, my mom, dad, and family who watch my boys so that I can rest and my teammate T.J. who reminds me to take care of myself, to know my value, to stand up for myself, and encourages me to expand outside of my comfort zone.

Three years ago I started making my business plan. My husband wanted me to go back to work at a law firm. I had just had my second son and had absolutely no interest in returning to a 9 to 5. I had already interned with the Chief Justice in my Circuit, worked as a Guardian ad Litem in the Family Courts, did a short stint with the Public Defender’s office, worked in a private practice for a Criminal Defense attorney, spent 8 years in investigations, worked at the largest law firm in South Carolina and had attorneys reaching out for me to work with them when I “decided to return to the workforce” after the birth of my second child. What I had planned for my life no longer brought me joy, but music did. I was able to utilize all my previous experiences to build a solid foundation to grow my business on. It’s the best decision I ever made — this work brings me joy. I’m grateful for the support I’ve had in the beginning stages of chasing this dream because my clients tell me that they see how genuinely happy I am to work with them, and that’s what makes it all worth it.

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of our lives today. Can you articulate to our readers what are the biggest family related challenges you are facing as a woman business leader during this pandemic?

Years ago my business law professor, Chuck Splawn, told me, “Jenny you don’t survive situations, you thrive through them.” I was reminded of this blessing recently from a meme that said something like the plot twist of 2020 is that it has been the best year of your life because you have faced challenge after challenge, you have adapted, and you have overcome. Don’t take that for granted.

Here I am thriving through balancing my husband’s work schedule, my son’s virtual school schedule, entertaining my four year old, running my company and making sure I’m available for my client accounts. Oh yeah, what’s for dinner?

Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?

I quickly realized I needed help and needed to delegate tasks. I have not mastered this, but I’m trying. I enlisted my mom to watch my youngest son, I moved all my work appointments to after 2pm, I hired someone at work to do our editing, someone to post our social media, someone to help setup accounts, and someone to help with secretarial work. We started ordering groceries online and take-out when my meetings run longer than expected. I set my son’s school work up on Sundays. I answer emails in the mornings and work late into the night. I’m blessed to be able to juggle a work schedule during this time and I don’t take that for granted.

Can you share the biggest work related challenges you are facing as a woman in business during this pandemic?

I think being afraid that if I didn’t continue to be 100% present for every opportunity presented to me, that I would lose clients and I wouldn’t be able to continue to grow my business. I was afraid that my clients wouldn’t understand or be flexible in me having to shuffle schedules so that I could be present to help my child with his school work.

Can you share what you’ve done to address those challenges?

You know, fear can talk you out of the things that are meant for you. I had to be steadfast in the situation at hand and sometimes I would proceed through with blinders. I had to prioritize daily events on one calendar and adjust accordingly. Once I did that, I had a better routine and things fell into place more easily.

Can you share your advice about how to best work from home, while balancing the needs of homeschooling or the needs of a family?

For me it’s making sure that I get my work done before and after my dedicated school time for my oldest son. He deserves that from me. He deserves some sort of consistency in this chaos.

Can you share your strategies about how to stay sane and serene while sheltering in place, or simply staying inside, for long periods with your family?

Self care. Making sure I take a few quiet moments to myself to meditate and have gratitude.

Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the coronavirus pandemic have understandably heightened a sense of uncertainty, fear, and loneliness. From your perspective can you help our readers to see the “Light at the End of the Tunnel”? Can you share your “5 Reasons To Be Hopeful During this Corona Crisis”? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

In order to get to light at the end of the tunnel, you actually have to go through the tunnel. That journey is different for everyone. At some point you have to just take the step forward and be flexible because it’s never going to be a straight path.

Turn off the tv. The punditry is rampant and is meant to drive a partisan narrative. Depending on what their agenda is, people may be swayed to positions that are not in their best interests, but that of a political party. For the most part people know how to better interact with others. Wear a mask, test, social distancing doesn’t mean secluding yourself, but being smarter about your interactions with others.

I work with many musicians. A common theme in their music is hope. I have submerged myself in music through this.

Sometimes to rise above adversity we need a hand up and we should be more willing to accept help. Utilizing the power of gratitude and being thankful for the blessing in our lives. Even if the only thing you can do is be thankful for in that moment is the breath you are breathing.

From your experience, what are a few ideas that one can use to effectively offer support to their family and loved ones who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?

Listening to their concerns and letting them know that they are not alone, that are loved and we are all in this together.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

I feel like this may be best described in some song lyrics.

“The only dream that isn’t worth having is the one you won’t chase down.” American Aquarium

“Everyday’s a new challenge and a new load to bear. In a way your setbacks only help you understand. So don’t despair, you’re almost there. Nothing’s Impossible.” Tropidelic

“Keep your focus. Keep a sense of control. We must recognize you and I are a part of it all. No amount of money in the world can shake my soul. We must hold on to the ones we love the most.” — TreeHouse!

Great big dreams come with great responsibilities. I know I’m on the right path when my responsibilities get heavy. The three songs above remind me to keep my dreams, know there will be challenges, and to appreciate my loved ones.

How can our readers follow you online?

You can see what I’m up to at Blue Avenue Music Group. Be sure to check out all the wonderful artists we work with. They are amazing talents.


Thank you so much for sharing these important insights. We wish you continued success and good health!

Thank you so much. I wish the same for you.

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