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David De Sola

Susan Silver: “I’m in Exploration Mode Right Now”

Seattle attorney Joleen Hughes recorded an interview with Alice in Chains manager Susan Silver for her podcast. She and Susan talk about the early days of the Seattle music scene, her way of doing business, and Susan’s possible plans for the future. The most newsworthy part of the interview in my opinion begins at around the 21:54 mark:

I’m in exploration mode right now. My sweet daughter went to college last month and, so this is really the first month of a new chapter. I had hoped that it, I would have a clearer picture, but I think between getting her ready to launch and a difficult year that we all had last year and also lost both my parents the year before that, that it’s, I haven’t really had the mental bandwidth to think about next career moves.

I’ll always work with the Alice in Chains gentlemen because they’re brothers to me, we have gone through the greatest experiences of life and the worst experiences of life. And our dynamic has changed a lot with back in the management days it was a little bit parental, a little bit nagging mom, with what we’ve all weathered individually and collectively, we’re a family.

We are a family, they’re [Alice in Chains] my brothers. And I trust them with my life and will always be there to offer whatever guidance I can. They’re pretty self sufficient at this point. They’ve been at it a long time and I have terrific partners in LA who have a terrific company name that really fits what we’re talking about too, the Velvet Hammer. The next chapter is writing itself now.

I’m not going to go down that road [management] again. It was on the one hand kismet when it happened and an incredible amount of blood, sweat and tears as you know, it was 24/7 and beyond. I don’t think starting over and doing it over would be as soul satisfying as it was. I think I need to take my collective experiences and parlay them into something else. And I don’t know what that is. I really don’t, I don’t even know if it’s in the music business. I think it is because that’s what I know. But maybe not, I’m looking into getting my meditation teacher certification. It sounds funny, but it’s true.

Listening to all those comments, it sounds as though she is thinking about retirement, or to be more specific, of getting out of the music business to do something else – whatever that may be. Her only client these days is Alice in Chains, who she describes as “pretty self-sufficient at this point” which she co-manages with David Benveniste from Velvet Hammer Management in Los Angeles.

Keep in mind, she already shuttered her management business once back in late 1997 when both her main clients at the time (Soundgarden and Alice in Chains) had either broken up or were on an indefinite hiatus. Fortunately for her, at this point in her life, the circumstances are very different and much better than 21+ years ago.

The whole thing runs for just shy of 32 minutes and is well worth listening to.

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