Danielle Thornton: Sosa Management Corp’s Leading Lady
“Behind every great man is a great woman.” While the origin of this popular phrase is unknown, one thing is for certain – it was created with Danielle Thornton in mind. The backbone of everything Sosa, Danielle is the president of Sosa Management Corp. and manager extraordinaire to up-and-coming artist, Eric Sosa, who is unveiling his first single today on iTunes, One You. Aside from working with Sosa, Danielle is working towards her goal of helping even more artists reach their full potential.
I met Danielle on December 4, 2009. I didn’t need to reference my G-Cal to recall the date because you don’t forget moments like meeting an energetic force like Danielle Thornton. Danielle immediately stood out from a crowd of talented, creative, and driven souls at a fundraising event to send our mutual good friend, feleciacruz, off to Cambodia for another Fighting For Futures expedition, but not for the reasons you may think. There wasn’t a vibe of naiveté or nervousness emanating from her that made you turn and look, it was quite the opposite; there was a sense of confidence and assuredness that Danielle exuded that made everyone take her and her dreams of making it very seriously. There was a new girl on the block that acted as if she had been there for years.
After holding down various corporate jobs as a teenager, Danielle turned to the legal field to find work as a paralegal. By age 24 she was running Sosa Management Corp., but I’ll let her explain how she got to that point in her own words below. Calling upon her strong work ethic and negotiating skills learned in the corporate world, she learned to use her experience to her advantage in order to navigate the music industry.
Maybe is not in her vocabulary, neither are the words can’t, won’t, and no. Danielle doesn’t allow anyone to dismiss her or those she works with; when she has something to say, she will be heard. When there is an obstacle thrown in her path she will figure out a way around it without breaking a sweat (or at least not allowing you to see her do so!). As she says on her Facebook Page, “It is my goal to give an artist the opportunity to do what they do best and leave the rest to me. “
The above only begins to scratch the surface of why IXiiV celebrates Danielle Thornton as a true Boss Lady. I now invite you to read her story in her words in our Boss Lady Spotlight.
How did you get your start?
This is my favorite question. My best friend and now artist, Eric Sosa, takes all the credit for this one. He saw potential in me that I didn’t. Knowing my love and support for unsigned talent and my experience in the corporate world since my early teens, he approached me to represent him as his manager. I was nervous and thought he was crazy but trusted his judgment. Besides, I was just doing him a “favor” LOL. Who knew, huh?
What inspires you?
What inspires me is knowing that so many don’t have the opportunity to make their dreams come true, or even strive for them like I can. There’s so many who aren’t on this earth anymore, or are still here, with dreams and goals and, for reasons out of their control, can’t keep striving. Although it’s a bittersweet thought, it’s something that reminds me that I will succeed and keep striving for those I know can’t. -(10:18)
What discourages you?
There’s very little that discourages me at this point LOL. I think the two years I’ve been doing this has definitely made my skin tougher. My ears, eyes, and mind are always alert to any breaking news pertaining to this industry. I’ve seen and heard too many instances where people catch their big break, whether it be after years and years of working or a few months LOL. So I just know anything that would normally discourage another I flip it into more of a reason to keep on moving forward!
What has been the most challenging in your career thus far?
Hmm, the most challenging, well that’s easy, getting some individuals to see the bigger picture. If I dissect that last statement we would be here all night LOL.
What’s been your biggest sacrifice for your career?
Technically my biggest sacrifice is probably that of a financial sacrifice. We are independent and the revenue we expect to come soon just doesn’t coincide with how vast and innovative our ideas are LOL. Mind you, I say that proudly and with no regret! It’s a do-it-yourself generation, we get that. Eventually things will change, but I don’t sweat it too much, I’m just careful.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received about achieving your goals?
I’ve met so many great people who’ve dropped many pearls of wisdom on little ol’ me. But one that stands out was from that of a certain well known legend in the A&R world who quoted a line from Jay-Z’s Decoded. He quoted, “But in business, like they say, you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.” He quoted that line after realizing that’s how my artist and I operate our business. I take that as a compliment.
What’s the worst criticism you have ever received and how did you react?
Easy, it was about me being a good manager, but not good enough due to my lack of hands-on experience or relationships with established individuals in the music industry. That was said when my artist, Eric Sosa, and I first started receiving well-deserved recognition from many media outlets and peers. It had me a bit shocked, though there was truth to that statement (I lacked a lot of common aspects of the music industry) I knew there was so much more that goes into being a great manager. My fearlessness, my belief in my artist, and my passion for what I do and can accomplish is enough to take any artist with any great talent to where they want to be. Might I add applying MYSELF as I expect my artists to do was all it took to catch up on all that history LOL.
If you could wish one thing for yourself right now, what would it be?
I honestly wish I could do more for those around me or even those I see “working” from a distance. I have the comfort of knowing one day I will be able to help so many other talents.
“The one thing I wish people would know about me before approaching me is I’m 100% and sincerely about my business .”
Tell us about your best “Damn the Man” experience.
Pshhhh! An awesome venue, awesome sponsoships, awesome host, awesome gift bags, awesome team, awesome response to the event and a big fat NO said in too many words deeming the convo’s/emails to be border line offensive! LOL. That’s all I can say about that. But we’ll be back!
Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?
I like my life planned, especially anything pertaining to my business, but even I had to come to grips with knowing at some point it’s just not worth it. In a business that’s constantly evolving into different versions of the original blue print, 6 months to a year is as far as I go with planning. The fact is that I’ll be wasting more time planning my 5 years when I could stick with making my more short term plan still relevant to the evolving music industry.
Who is your ideal client?
My ideal client is an individual that understands you have to bring more to the table than just your talent. Sosa Management Corp isn’t a puppeteer. It’s your talent I want to help move, but it’s also your DREAM that I want to help come true.
What’s your next project and why is it important to you?
My next project is with Eric Sosa and it’s going to stray far away from his recent mixtape series Rhyme & Noodles: No Artificial Flavoring (in which he released two volumes). The importance of this next project is almost hard to put in words. Some may say Sosa’s last project was a short cut and raise the question, “Is he capable of putting out a full album or mixtape?” This next project will answer that question.
What’s been the most fulfilling part of being a Boss Lady?
Realizing that anything is possible. And I truly believe that through my personal experiences and keeping tabs on this business I’m engulfed in. I recently saw that Rolling Stone Magazine featured it’s first ever unsigned band on it’s cover. As I shared with my social networks, it gave me chills. That alone opens up so many doors to the unsigned artist.
What would you like to say to those who discouraged you along the way?
Hope nothing but the best and I’ll see ya around.
What would you change about the industry you are in?
How can people get in touch with you?