Wednesday, 4 October 2017


LiveStyle (formerly SFX) has hired Gary Richards to be its President of North America. Richards was the founder of Hard Events, the LA-based dance music-focused promoter that was acquired by Live Nation in 2012. Following that acquisition Richards stayed with Live Nation until recently.

Global Entertainment, the UK’s second-largest festival operator, is downsizing its touring business in favour of a renewed focus on its portfolio of festivals, following former Global Live chief Sam Bush and promoter Joe Schiavon’s move to rival Live Nation. They  are joined at LNE by new promoters Kamran Haq (who was a local promoter in Manchester, before moving on to work with acts such as Frank Carter & the Rattlesnakes, and Sean Ryman, who joins from Academy Music Group, where he promoted nationally shows by Taking Back Sunday, Slaves and Less than Jake. Live Nation has also hired Chris Loll as the first chief operating officer (COO) of its Media & Sponsorship business. And Canadian booking agent Zaed Maqbool, who had been with The Agency Group/United Talent Agency (UTA) in Toronto since 2006, is to relocate to Dubai to take up a new role with Live Nation.

and Lesley Olenik has joined Live Nation as vice-president of touring for its US concerts division. Olenik, who will be based in Los Angeles and report to senior VP of touring Omar Al-Joulani, is a nine-year veteran of AEG/Goldenvoice, most recently serving as Goldenvoice’s senior VP of talent buying, where she booked shows throughout southern California.

The live events company Mclcreate has appointed Neil Lawson as managing director. Lawson takes over from Tim Spencer who led the recent management buyout from the NEP Group, and now serves as CEO.

Ticketmaster France has hired Charlotte Broutin, formerly of rival operation France Billet, as head of music. Broutin’s arrival at Ticketmaster France (formerly Ticketnet) comes as the company increases its share of the French ticketing market, where it is in competition with Fnac’s France Billet and Vivendi’s Digitick.

Universal Music UK has announced that former EMI and Warner video supremo Stefan Demetriou will join its Globe Productions unit next month in a move which "brings one of the UK music industry's most celebrated audiovisual creatives together with Universal Music's market-leading, Oscar-winning creative and commercial partnerships division".

Larmer Tree Festival has made two new key appointments. Sarah Dennehy becomes the event's Creative Director, and Rachel Kinchin takes on its marketing and communications.
Dennehy has previously worked on events such as the Hay Festival, Brecon Jazz Festival and Australia's Perth Festival. Kinchin, meanwhile, has worked with a range of events, venues and artists, and previously collaborated with Dennehy on the Festival Of Voice in Cardiff. After a year off, next year's Larmer Tree Festival will take place on 20-22 July, taking it back from a five day to a three day event.

UK-based marketing specialist Pat Carr has left BMG after joining the company nearly three years ago. Carr became part of BMG’s London office when it purchased Korda Marshall’s Infectious Music in Q3 2014. She leaves behind her role at SVP of Marketing – in which she has recently worked on UK No.1 albums from Rick Astley and Blink 182, amongst others.

Spotify has lured digital-media veteran Courtney Holt over from Disney to lead its efforts around original video and podcast programming. The hire comes days after the streaming service confirmed the departure of Tom Calderone, global head of content partnerships at Spotify.  And Spotify has appointed Rakesh Patel as its new Head Of Sales for the UK. He brings 18 years of experience to the role, most recently as Advertising Director at Auto Trader. He effectively replaces Chris Forrester, who left Spotify in April

David Kramer and Jay Sures have been promoted to co-presidents of United Talent Agency (UTA).  Kramer, who oversees who UTA’s film, comedy touring, licensing and publishing activities, and Sures, who heads up its television departments, both began their careers as assistants to agency co-founder Peter Benedek, and have since 2010 served as joint managing directors.

Sony/ATV has announced the promotion of London-based Dan Nelson to the role of SVP International.

LA-based promoter Goldenvoice has made new promotions in its venues and festival divisions. Jennifer Yacoubin hands over her booking responsibilities at LA’s El Rey Theatre (771-cap.) to Jennifer Liu, who becomes talent buyer, with Yacoubin promoted to talent buyer at the larger Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall (6,300-cap.). Liu was previously talent buyer for the Roxy Theatre (500-cap.) in West Hollywood. Mapi Moran becomes director of festival marketing, handling properties including Coachella, Stagecoach and Hangout in Alabama. Moran was previously marketing manager for Goldenvoice’s club/venue shows.

K2 Agency, which represents Metallica, Iron Maiden and Slayer, has acquired booking agency Factory Music.  Sharon Richardson, who launched UK-based Factory Music Management and Agency in 2004, will join K2 on 1ast October, bringing a roster that includes some of the biggest names in metal.

Warner Music UK has announced two promotions within its senior management team, with Peter Breeden becoming Chief Operating Officer and Mel Fox becoming Chief Transformation Officer. Breeden will also retain his current role of Chief Financial Officer.

Max Lousada,  the Warner Music Group's new global head of recorded music, has joined Warner's bpoard of directors  alongside Jon Platt, the CEO & Chairman of Warner/Chappell, and  international economist Noreena Hertz. Cameron Strang, the current boss of Warner Bros Records - has stepped down from the board.

BMG's EVP Recorded Music, Jon Cohen, has left the company. He joined the Bertelsmann-owned firm after BMG acquired Los Angeles-based Vagrant Records in 2014.  He has told his former colleagues to "keep smiling!" in the wake of his departure

At the Entertainment Retailers Association's Annual General Meeting, Eduard Castello, Music Content Partnerships Manager for both Google Play and YouTube in the UK and Ireland, will join the board of the trade group. Other new board members include Raoul Chatterjee, who was previously Chair of ERA while at 7digital, and is now at SoundCloud, and Tony Boothroyd, owner of Huddersfield-based Vinyl Tap.

Gary Hutchinson is to leave his position as head of venue sales and commercial partnerships at Wembley Stadium. The former Sunderland AFC exec joined the UK’s largest stadium earlier this year, effectively replacing its ex-head of business development, Jim Frayling. He will leave the FA, the venue’s owner, at the end of 2017 to run a private hospitality venture, Chrysalis Leisure Group.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017


Walter Becker
Steely Dan guitarist and co-founder Walter Becker has died, aged 67, In a statement to Rolling Stone, bandmate Donald Fagen said of his friend and songwriting partner of 50 years: "He was smart as a whip, an excellent guitarist and a great songwriter. He was cynical about human nature, including his own, and hysterically funny ... I intend to keep the music we created together alive as long as I can with the Steely Dan band".

US country music singer Don Williams - who enjoyed great success with his easy-going singing style - has died aged 78 after a short illness. Williams began his solo career in 1971, amassing 17 number one country hits. His songs such as 'Gypsy Woman' and 'Tulsa Time', were covered by singers such as Eric Clapton and Pete Townshend. Williams was known as the 'gentle giant' of country music.

Another country star, Troy Gentry, has also died, Gentry died in a helicopter crash. Gentry, was half of the popular country duo, Montgomery Gentry, with his brother. Formed in 1999 the duo had released eight studio albums. Country music stars including Sheryl Crow paid tribute to Gentry on social media. Grammy award-winning Singer Brad Paisley said he was "heartbroken and in disbelief" at the news of Gentry's death.
Grant Hart

Little Barrie drummer Virgil Howe has died, aged 42. He was the son of Yes guitarist Steve Howe and the news was confirmed via the prog rock band's Facebook page last night. The cause of death has not yet been made public. Formed in 2000, Little Barrie are currently best known for writing the theme tune to 'Breaking Bad' spin-off 'Better Call Saul'. The band released their latest album, 'Death Express', in July, and were due to begin a UK tour in Cambridge.

Husker Du drummer Grant Hart has passed away. The NME says that there had beeb  been no official comment but according to social media reports, the Husker Du founder has died. He was 56 and had been battling cancer. Husker Du shared a photo of Hart on their Facebook page the same day.

Live Nation Belgium (LNB) booker Marianne Dekimpe has died at the age of 49. Dekimpe started her career as assistant to Rock Werchter festival founder Herman Schueremans and director Yo Van Saet. She later worked as a booking agent for Belgian and international artistes. 

Music industry veteran Mick Clark has died. President of his own company i10 Music Group at the time of his death, Clark also worked at labels including Columbia and Virgin during his career. In his A&R roles, he signed acts including Soul II Soul, Leftfield, Maxi Priest, Loose Ends and Grooverider. Alan McGee, who worked with Mick on a number of projects, said in a statement: "Mick was a musical genius - up until a week ago he was excitedly telling me about some great producer ideas. His sudden passing is a huge shock to me and the many people who loved him". Clark is survived by two sons, Jamie and Callum.

And as we write this piece, news broke that Tom Petty has died after being rushed to a Los Angeles hospital. He was 66, and the author and performer of  a host of iconic songs including  "Don't Do Me Like That", "Refugee", "The Waiting", "I Won't Back Down" and "Freefalling". Petty joined his first band, The Sundowners, in high school at the age of 14 and then joined The Epics, who later changed their name to Mudcrutch, and Petty travelled to Los Angeles in search of a record deal which never came for the band. A new group formed in 1975 which included Petty and two former Mudcrutch members, eventually becoming known as Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, with a hugely successful career. Petty also had success as an actor and ge joined fellow music legends Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Jeff Lynne, and Roy Orbison in 1988 to form The Travelling Wilburys. They released two studio albums. Petty was also an outspoken advicate of the rights of artists, taking issue with record companies on a number of occasions about what he believed to be unjust practices. Tony Dimitriades, longtime manager of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, confirmed Petty's death on behalf of the performer's family. “It’s shocking, crushing news,” Bob Dylan told Rolling Stone in a statement. “I thought the world of Tom. He was great performer, full of the light, a friend, and I’ll never forget him.” Image from musicisentropy on flickr.