In 2020, Lil Baby has become one of hip-hop’s dominant figures, with his second album, February’s My Turn, spending five weeks atop the Billboard 200 and earning 2.4 million equivalent album units, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. And Davis, who joined Capitol Music Group in 2018 — a month after Lil Baby signed with Quality Control Music under Motown/Capitol — has been right by his side, working across departments to oversee the rollout of My Turn as well as its May deluxe edition, which spawned the top 10 hit “We Paid.”
A Howard University graduate who used to plan the college’s homecoming concerts, Davis, 34, landed gigs at Creative Artists Agency and The Agency Group before joining Tina Davis’ Phase Too team, where she became Chris Brown’s day-to-day manager and helped build his record label, CBE. Now at Capitol, she’s applying her experience in management, touring and A&R as a liaison between teams. “The artist has a vision, the label has a vision, and they need to be on the same page,” she says. “I’m able to buckle down on strategy under the umbrella of marketing.”
That also involves elevating rising rap duo City Girls and promoting soundtrack projects for films like last year’s Queen & Slim. But the work that most excites Davis is increasing opportunities for Black artists and executives: She’s a member of Universal Music Group’s and Capitol’s racial-justice task forces and worked on June’s The Show Must Be Paused initiative. “I never map out exactly what title I want someday,” says Davis, “but I want to keep helping artists, keep helping the culture and make sure that Black executives — especially Black women — have a seat at the table.”
This article originally appeared in the Nov. 7, 2020, issue of Billboard.