A reply from Joy Leist Ex Aaron Carter Street Team Director about the current debate.
I concur completely for the most part with the writer [admin note: assumably this article]. As an adult supporter of Aaron for four years now, I have watched and even at one point became involved in this wonderful world of entertainment. So I speak with some information that not all of Aaron’s fans have.
Jane was and is the brains, brawn, and energy behind Spectra Music & Management. It is a corporation, although I would have to check to see if it is a LLC. There are individuals who do not set up LLCs when setting up corporations, however, it is rare. Bob may want to say he was co-manager, but it would have been set up for tax and/or other business reasons. It certainly was not due to the fact he contributed this huge amount to the day to day decision making in Aaron’s or Nick’s careers. Which we will get back to Nick and Bob in just one moment, because, well I’m on a roll now. My understanding about some of the difficulties in the end of the marriage were over Jane turning over partial control of Aaron’s career to another management company. Bob was against it, it cut into the profit. What there was of a profit anyway. Jane allowed the other company to come on board, bringing with it a whole new round of expenses to look at from a failing concert tour.
Yes, the tour was a flop. The writer is correct in how the tour and record industry work. Let us take a page from another Carter’s career and look at the Backstreet Boy’s Black & Blue tour that was a train wreck from the beginning. Sponsors are the ones that foot some of the bill for the tour. In this case, Burger King. They are promised certain things for their financial support. In this case, Burger King didn’t foresee getting the things promised to them, so they pull out. In comes Pop Tarts. I just won’t go there, because this is a professional post. Pop Tarts nor Burger King were the sole sponsors, there were several additional. With the contribution of the sponsors, the contributions of the record label, and the contributions of the fans in by tickets, the show is produced and hence you get Boys running across the stage, and occasionally in their undies. Aaron can’t run across the stage in his undies. Aaron can’t do a lot of things that would draw a more adult audience, because he can’t detour from the core audience he has. To do that, he must, as the writer stated, do a 180 to form a whole new image. This takes time, money, and a HUGE following to allow an artist to do that. Even then it isn’t always successful.
CD sales are important. Going out and buying just one copy doesn’t work for the up and coming artists. I’m not sure how long the figure of speech, up and coming is, but I think Aaron’s crossed that path and should be a hot and rising artist. BUT, and this is a big BUT, he can only be that with promotion. Grass roots promotion worked for awhile, but having worked that end of things, I know the walls I ran into. Aaron was to young, his voice not as mature, and there wasn’t enough glitz for him to make it on regular airplay on radio stations around the world. You could get him on Radio Disney in a heartbeat, but have a real radio station to play his stuff, the radio air personalities would laugh their rears off at you. Again, as an adult, I have had conversations with such personalities in trying to make a way for Aaron. One of the strongest things he had to overcome, after being Nick Carter’s little brother, was the fact that he had no glitz or no shove from his record label. NO sell to the station. Sent out the CD to them, and I guarantee you, they either used it as a giveaway, or they shoved it on a shelf. Whatever they did do, they didn’t play it. Having worked at a radio stations many moons ago, I know what happens there too.
Now back to the Nick & Bob issue. This seems to be a replay of events that took place around four years ago with a certain brother and a certain father and a certain business. Nick relieved Bob Carter as his Business Manager. Let us retrace THOSE steps to see how that scenario went. Bob, according to Nick’s financial advisers at the time, was taking money from Nick. NOT writing IOU’s, but taking money off the top. Nick found out, fired his father, family brew-ha-ha, Nick doesn’t move to Santa Ynez and stays in Tampa instead. Although Mandy Willaford got the blame from the fans on that one, in reality, it was Nick at 18 spreading his wings, weighing his options, and finally coming out from the clouds to see what his real business interests were. Did Bob take the money? I wasn’t there, I can’t say one way or the other. What I can say, is that in the end, Nick, Bob, Jane, and family reached an interesting settlement. I guess you could say that both parties won the court cases, or lost depending on how you look at it. Nick and Bob are now speaking, which is an improvement, but it makes me wonder, with other allegations that are out there, for what reason Nick is back in Bob’s fold.
Ganging up again, only this time on Jane via Aaron is going to back fire on ALL fronts. First of all, Jane has a reputation. I’ve heard from several sources several different versions. I am going to go with the one that I have seen out of her. She is determined to support her child in his career only after she supports him as a mother. The basic concept of being Aaron’s manager, and this is where I differ from the writer, is to protect Aaron from the “difficulties” that Nick experienced with his Big Poppa. Although Aaron worked with Donna and Johnny Wright in the beginning, Jane guarded him from the end result of what happened to BSB. She pulled him out of their care when things started getting different from her idea of what Aaron should do or could do. Was she right? Not my place to say yes or no, but it makes you wonder where he could have gone had that influence still been there. She was insightful enough to leave his first record label, Edel, for a more up and coming label…Jive.
Jive Records, oh boy. Let us look at their pattern of work ethics as well. They take a pop group and promise them the world and then half deliver. Any questions see Backstreet Boys and NSYNC. Neither of them, but I am going to primarily deal with Backstreet as I know more about this one, got what they contracted for. Backstreet was not able to do what Jive wanted, because Jive put the brakes on them. First round, they signed NSYNC too. Second round, they pulled some of the promotion and payola from Backstreet to hype NSYNC. You only have a limited area for fan base when you have signed two boy bands. They cause a huge argument in the pop group fan base. In the end, one group has to go “Bye Bye Bye” and it was Backstreet. Why? Record sales? Concert revenue? Management? Cuts of album sales? All of it contributed. They are doing the same thing with Aaron. In order for them to spend money on Aaron Carter, he has to prove to them that he can make them money. Album sales on Another Earthquake were declining, so the next CD was going to be even worse in their minds. Why pay a crap load of money to engineers, studio musicians, and studio rent time for an artists that is fading when you can spend that same amount of money on an artist that is hot and make twice as much off of them. Recording industry = making money. That is what it is all about, bottom line. Who or what is going to make them the most money. Backstreet, with all their problems wasn’t doing it. Aaron with all his problems isn’t doing it. The writer used Bobby Brown as an example, he in the end, wasn’t doing it. Why feed a dead horse oats if it isn’t going to pull the plow to make the field to plant the crop that gives them the oats to feed the horse.
Aaron’s claims are the claims of a sixteen year old child that is in the middle of a huge family turmoil and is having problems seeing and believing all that is being spun around him. If you go back to all of Aaron’s interviews he says…”When I am sixteen I want to stop recording for awhile and go to school.” I believe he mentions working with dolphins and ocean life. A Marine Biologist. He is sixteen, his life is full of turmoil, and he has a fading career. Take what the kid says with a grain of salt, so to speak. He has witnessed to much for any of us to even begin to understand, not only in his own home, but around the world. Aaron is in the middle. He has a parent that is dangling objects in front of his nose, and under it, that just doesn’t belong there, and he has a parent that has supported him in not only his career, but in sustaining life. No matter HOW much Aaron claims he wants emancipation, the bottom line remains, there is NO DOUBT that Jane Carter is and always will be that child’s mother. No one can change that fact. It is a fact that God/Buddah/ whomever could not even change.
In summation….Aaron, you need to do some soul searching, Nick you need to keep your mouth shut, you are not the greatest role model out there Bubba, and Bob needs to just get help. As for Jane, her biggest mistake was caring. Caring that her youngest son did not get ripped off like her oldest one did. Caring that all things in Carterville looked to be perfect when it wasn’t. Caring that the fans got the show they wanted. Caring that Aaron got to live his dream. But, if she wouldn’t have made that mistake, she would not have been a very good mother. Mothers are designed to do what Jane did, yet they are also destined to take all the guff when something goes so very wrong. Don’t judge Jane for what happened. Look around with what and whom she had to work with. Record labels that are cutting their losses in the form of cutting artists, spouses whom are cutting into the profits as well as into a few other things that should remain within the family, and an industry that judges on looks, wealth, and power. Hmm. Seems to me, Aaron is better out of the industry and Jane is better away from the management of a career and far better off with a natural directing role in her son’s life.
Whatever happens in the end, I agree with the writer, if things don’t change, and quick, Aaron will definitely be on the “Remember When” shows, if he is lucky. What a shame for a kid with such raw talent.
Keeping Aaron and family in my prayers,
Former Street Team Director
Admin note: Obviously since this was anonymously submitted, I can’t verify this person’s identity as Aaron’s former Street Team director as stated.