In January, CAA’s music department got significantly more lively when Lewis moved to the agency after 23 years at WME, bringing with her such high-profile artists as Eminem, Ne-Yo, T.I., the Roots and Lupe Fiasco. After her move to CAA, she signed Kanye West — he had been without an agent since her departure from WME. She was also key in the development of the Watch the Throne tour with West and Jay-Z, the highest-grossing hip-hop tour worldwide of 2011. She continues to develop emerging acts such as Chip tha Ripper, Chance the Rapper, Angel Haze, Travis Scott, Cyhi the Prynce.
What we should know: “The industry is not all glitz and glamour. The business requires a true commitment, but you do it because you love it and you’re passionate about it . It’s about the end result and making it happen for your client. Being behind the scenes can be as rewarding as being in the spotlight.”
Words of wisdom: “The key to success in this business is tenacity, ethics, creativity, resourcefulness and perseverance. Never take no for an answer!!”
Phone on vacation?: “Absolutely. I don’t think I could fathom taking a vacation without remaining close to my business.”
Life-work balance: “I can’t say that I’ve found that perfect balance yet. It’s a constant work in progress.”
Charitable passions: “I am a big fan and supporter of two philanthropic organizations. The first is Dress for Success (dressforsuccess.org) because I firmly believe that disadvantaged women should have the attire, support network and career development tools to thrive in their work and life. The second charity I am passionate about is called Little Kids Rock (littlekidsrock.org). This organization partners with school districts to develop instrument donation programs, train teachers on how to teach music and provide the resources necessary to deliver a program that covers all styles of music.”