paper bag, wet. (photo by evan p. cordes (cc by 2.0))
If the major labels have cratered, who gets to fill the void?
Perhaps artist managers, a group that sometimes finds itself babysitting artists, and other times investing in multi-billion startups (music or otherwise). Enter the freshly-steroided Maverick, a name that old-timers will remember as the label originally co-founded by Madonna and helmed by Guy Oseary.
Now, Maverick will bulk into a consortium of various management groups from various genres, with Live Nation Entertainment joining the fun.
So far, these guys suck at hype: according to a strangely-timed Friday evening announcement in Billboard that hasn’t quite rippled, the other players in the gang include:
- Laffitte Management’s Ron Laffitte
- I Am Other’s Caron Veazey
- Blueprint Group’s Gee Roberson and Cortez Bryant
- Reign Deer’s Larry Rudolph and Adam Leber
- Quest Management’s Scott Rodger
- Spalding Entertainment’s Clarence Spalding
Live Nation, painfully played by the shrewd super-manager Irving Azoff in a deal gone sour, is aiming to re-enter the management arena as part of the consortium. That makes sense, as Live Nation itself is benefiting enormously from being able to actually charge for music (unlike labels). But insiders point to a show business that puts big branding deals way ahead of actual ticket sales (just ask Live Nation exec and former MP3.com co-conspirator Joe Fleischer).
And where’s Troy Carter? The manager famous for guiding Lady Gaga in her glory days is now apparently minting plenty as an investor, and might be a nice addition to the cast. Meanwhile, Oseary is no slouch in the investment world either, with music and non-music companies under his ‘A-Trak’ moniker spanning Airbnb, Uber, Spotify, Soundcloud, and INDMusic (they do YouTube stuff, look them up).
(updated, Sunday: a commenter asked about Scooter Braun’s involvement, if any…)
And what would you say this consortium will DO around here, anyway?