Scroll down Scott Lipps’s Instagram page, and you’ll see something out of place: a “#tbt” photograph of Lipps from 1980-something, hair held aloft by way too much Aqua Net. That was his life before he founded One Management, whose 25 staffers rep the likes of Claudia Schiffer and A$AP Rocky.
A rock connoisseur and drummer since age 8--who says his style is “one part John Bonham, one part Keith Moon, and a little bit Jimmy Chamberlin”--Lipps played during the hair-band era for Black Cherry and for the Boogie Nights. Then he hurt his arm on tour and realized he needed to find a second act. Fortunately, he’d always kept an eye on the business side. As he points out, many drummers “don’t write the songs”--therefore, “you want to manage or market the band so you’re not easily replaced.”
His mom suggested he contact a cousin who managed a modeling agency, and Lipps was soon chauffeuring the long-legged and lithe. Within a year, he was an agent. In 2001, he founded One. Back then, he had a handful of clients; today, seven divisions represent more than 300 models, musicians, and celebrities. As his arm healed, Lipps started doing gigs with friends. In 2011, while looking for an act for One’s 10th anniversary party, his team stumbled on Courtney Love.
“I said, ‘Listen, I’d love to play drums with her,’” Lipps recalls. Love was not as enthusiastic--at first. “I went to soundcheck, and I was kind of almost ready to throw him off the stage,” she says. “And then he was really, really good.” A month later, he joined her band for a festival in Brazil attended by nearly 40,000 people. This spring, he toured with Love, performing at venues like the Hollywood Bowl. Lipps is not quitting his day job. But, he says, “I think my essence is more of a creative person.” Once a rocker, always a rocker.