Ep 14: Leigh Holt

Leigh Holt | Lauren Daigle Music Manager, MaddJett Management

Leigh Holt is the Founder and President of maddjett

Leigh is an innovator who develops wins for artists, brands and fans. She continually draws from her entertainment, sports, marketing and sponsorship backgrounds to drive clients’ careers to new heights in unparalleled ways.  With more than 10 years of experience in the music industry, Leigh left her role as the VP of Strategic Partnerships with Warner Music Nashville to launch maddjett. A full-service agency, maddjett aligns the world’s best brands, most influential voices and smartest tech to reach client goals.

maddjett’s diverse roster of clients and projects has included Hunter Hayes breaking the Guinness World Record™ for playing the most live concerts in 24 hours, Oprah’s The Life You Want Weekend, Pepsi MidAmerica, PixMob, Sony Music Nashville, Harper Collins Christian Publishers, the Museum of the Bible and more. 

 Through tailored strategies that include traditional, digital and creative ideas, maddjett engineers custom solutions that increase both revenue and brand awareness for their clients. Taking it all a step further, the company strives to utilize cutting edge technology allowing brands to flawlessly interact, engage and respond to consumers and fans. maddjett has grown into one of Nashville’s branding experts thanks to its exemplary work product.

madjett currently represents Grammy Award winning artist, Lauren Daigle. 

In addition to this work, Leigh tirelessly works to serve her community by sitting on the Board of Porter’s Call, a nonprofit working to provide counsel, encouragement and support to recording artists and their families. She also inspires those on her teams to think generously. maddjett has its own division devoted to helping local nonprofits.  Through this arm, Leigh has given countless hours to SMART Supplies, the YWCA and the American Cancer Society’s development of the Relay LIVE brand (in honor of her parents). 

Leigh lives in Franklin with her husband Tim and , her two sweet boys, Jett and Maddox and roots for the Georgia Bulldogs any chance she gets. 

Leigh and I chat about her faith journey, her career journey, her roller coaster year in 2018, and managing Christian’s top artist, Grammy Award winner, Lauren Daigle.

1:49 Leigh introduces us to her company madjett management.

2:36 Leigh begins sharing her faith journey and how our lives intersected at the University of Kentucky

5:28 “You know when you know in your gut you have to do something and it is your choice if you are going to obey it or not?”

“I had just become a Christian, so I was reading the Word. The only thing I had to do was read my Bible, literally, at that phase of life where you drink it up.”

7:45 Leigh shares about her transition from working for Kentucky basketball to working for the Orlando Magic.

11:18 Leigh begins to share about her transition out of athletics and into music.

“I’m a builder.  I love to build it, but I hate to maintain it.”

Enneagram talk:  I am a 1. Leigh is a 6.

20:09 Record labels do the marketing for artist’s albums.

20:39 Leigh begins sharing about the creation of maddjett

28:00 Leigh shares about the transition to representing Lauren Daigle only

29:23 “I want to do this with a Christian artist. I want to be able to sell out rooms like this with a really positive message. I remember God said to me clearly in that moment, ‘I’m teaching you this for a reason. You’re going to go back into Christian music and you are going to be able to do this’…. He basically said to me this experience will not be wasted.”

33:31 “My first thought was, that’s impossible. And God stopped me in my tracks and was like, ‘Do not tell Me what’s not possible.”

33:59 “I manage Lauren and what that means is ultimately I am (in the simpliest business form) basically the CEO of her business.  At the end of the day, Lauren runs her business, she runs her ministry, she runs her company, and I take her vision and make sure it comes to life.”

34:38 We begin discussing the difficult season Lauren and her team endured at the end of 2018

“Her [Lauren] vision has been, I want to play stadiums.  I want healing and hope to come to people even if I don’t mention the name of Jesus, that it would be so palpable through our love that He is present and people will come to know Him.”

“She did not seek out to make a mainstream record. She literally sought out, how do I make a record that impacts as many people as possible. Let’s not let anything in this record be a wall for anyone, any nationality, any race, any gender, any denominational belief, like I don’t want to put any walls up between God and them. How do I pour out words into this record to do that? And I believe that she did.”

Lauren wrote “You Say” three years ago after winning a Dove Award.  She knew she needed to be rooted in her identity.

39:19 “We put out You Say with no plans to take it to mainstream radio….It goes out on K-love and all of a sudden it is staying on the top of the iTunes charts week after week after week. Usually those things will stay at the top of the iTunes charts for the week it is released and then it will go to the bottom. Most songs don’t have staying power. She was the 3rd top selling album the week we came out behind Eminem and Paul McCartney….Week after week, You Say, which clearly talks about God in the lyric is maintaining this top position.  About 7 or 8 weeks later, we start getting phones calls from every single mainstream label, ‘Who is this girl?’, ‘What is this voice?’, ‘What is this story?’, it was insane.”

About You Say, “This is the little church song that could.”

40:49 “Nobody has asked us to change the lyric. Most the time if you have Christian content, but you put it on a secular station they ask you to change the lyric, rewrite a bridge, or cut it down. Even when we were on Dancing with The Stars, they cut the song to 2 1/2 minutes, I thought for sure when they cut the song they were going to cut the word, God…but they didn’t cut the lyric.”

41:21 Leigh begins sharing about the backlash Lauren received after singing on the Ellen DeGeneres Show.

45:34 “Lauren, I feel like she handled the Ellen situation really well…She basically said (and I am totally paraphrasing), if I start drawing boundary lines around where God calls me to go then I am completely missing the heart of God.”

49:24 “If I’m not lock step on my identity how can I anything? How can I be away from my family? How can I be confident in my parenting? How can I be good at my job? It’s really being rooted and knowing God is with my kids when I am gone. God is with my time when I am home to make sure it is quality time. I am able to protect Lauren in the role I am in in her life”

Exodus 14:14  The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

That verse keeps coming up full circle for us.

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