Heather Lowery, President and CEO, Femme It Forward

Heather Lowery
– Heather Lowery

In Her Own Words: The 411 On Heather Lowery 

Heather Lowery
President and CEO, Femme It Forward  

The Business Philosophy Heather Lowery Lives By:

 Do your best, give your all, lead by example and embrace the journey.

The Biggest Accomplishments In Lowery’s Career:

• Launching a boutique talent agency and running it for 12 years

• Joining Live Nation Urban and helping to build many successful festivals and platforms for artists in hip-hop, R&B and gospel under the leadership of Shawn Gee

• Creating Femme It Forward and partnering on a joint venture with Live Nation backed by Michael Rapino

• Providing platforms and vast opportunities for women in music • Partnering with VERZUZ on all female battles

What Lowery Has Been Up To – And What’s Next:

• I curated and helped produce the female editions of VERZUZ with Erykah Badu & Jill Scott, Brandy & Monica, Ashanti & Keyshia Cole and SWV & Xscape. The female battles continuously break viewing and streaming records; the energy that the ladies bring is unmatched.

• I also recently launched Revolutionary Reads, a virtual book club to educate and empower women of color and allies, as well as Next Gem Femme, a mentorship program for hundreds of young women of color. Next Gem Femme has recently launched applications and we’ve secured over 100 incredible leading industry executives from an impressive list of companies dedicated to serve as mentors. Not only will this program open a lot of doors for these young women – seeding the next generation of talent – it will also connect them with amazing role models, who can teach and inspire them. I’m thrilled with the work we’ve done thus far and can’t wait for the inaugural program launch in August.

• I also joined both the board of House of Blues Music Forward Foundation and the Recording Academy’s leadership council for the inaugural Black Music Collective, which is dedicated to the inclusion, recognition, and advancement of Black music and its creators and professionals within the Recording Academy and music industry at large. It’s been a busy year, and with the return of live music it’s only going to get even busier and better.

On Seeing The Silver Linings: 

The biggest positive takeaway of the past year is that my team and I can adapt and innovate during difficult situations. We had to change so many of the ways we operate, but I think we did an incredible job. Going forward we know that circumstances can change in an instant but we’re nimble and savvy enough to overcome.

On Inclusivity In The Live Biz:

I think it’s essential and we need to do much better. I make it a priority in everything we do – to celebrate, educate and empower women, and give them a platform to share their voices, on and off-stage. We are committed to leading, inspiring, paying it forward, and opening doors for the next generation of women to create a more inclusive industry. 

Hot Takes

Which music artist or band has most helped you get through this year? 

I have not only been listening to a lot of classic music, but also rediscovering words of wisdom from iconic women that inspire me – Nina Simone, Chaka Khan, Eartha Kitt, Minnie Riperton, Phyllis Hyman, and Sade.

The artist you would most like to see live when touring and festivals return? 

I cannot wait to get back to live shows! I would love to see H.E.R., SZA, Jazmine Sullivan, Doja Cat, and Giveon. 

When it’s safe to do so, will you go back to the office, work remotely or a combination of both? Why? 

A combination of both. Being in an office environment and being able to interact with my team and colleagues (in person) is something that I have missed over the past year.  However, I find joy in spending my mornings at home.  I will spend my afternoons and early evenings in the office when it’s safe to return. 

Artists To Watch Breaking Next Year?

Baby Rose, SAYGRACE, Jada Kingdom …just to name a few.

How do you think livestreaming will or won’t be integrated into your business going forward?  

Live Streaming will most definitely be integrated into my business model going forward, it was a component of live entertainment even before the pandemic and will continue to grow. We have seen over the course of the year how many companies heavily relied on live streaming as it was the only option. As life returns to a new normal, it only makes sense that it will continue to be a major element of live..

Your favorite music documentary – recent or old? 

I have so many many favorite music documentary films, just to name a few, “David Foster: Off The Record,” “The Black Godfather,” “Tina,” “What Happened, Miss Simone?,” “Betty: They Say I’m Different,” “Quincy,” “Tear the Roof Off-The Untold Story of Parliament Funkadelic,” and “Still Bill.”

Zoom, Clubhouse or TikTok? Why?  

Zoom meetings and calls have been my daily go-to.