Posts Tagged ‘Melissa Miller Ormond’

Talent

I consider myself a great judge of talent, and have worked with an amazing spectrum of artists throughout my career.  In addition to all the unique, credible and interesting music artists I represented, I also have great pride in the executive talent I helped develop.

Of the many people assisting me over the years, I want to trumpet them all, starting with the late, great Bill Gross who started a comedy department at Triad, and went on to a successful career as a manager and entrepreneur.  Brian Greenbaum is a senior agent at CAA representing Paul Simon and Bob Dylan (and others); Chris King also went to CAA and is a senior agent in their Marketing Department.  David Levine, Keith Sarkisian, and John Branigan are now senior agents at William Morris EndeavorLori Goldklang is an SVP at Sony Pictures, Jim Haljun taking over the world with Google (and his new baby boy, congrats!!), and Carl Freed went from a successful career as a concert promoter to being an entrepreneur, as well.  Linda Martinez is in commercial real estate at Coldwell Banker.  My most recent pride comes from Zoe Sonquist King who is doing brand partnerships at Capitol Records.

In addition to my assistants and trainees, while I was at William Morris, I ran the Agent Training Program, and hired some great trainees in Eric Wilker, now an SVP at WB TV, Robbie Fraser, a great agent at William Morris Endeavor, and Jim Hughes, a successful event entrepreneur.  Melissa Miller Ormond is now President of MSG Entertainment and Maria Laing is VP Bus Dev at MrMaster Online.

Congrats to you all!

(This list includes those that I’m in touch with – if there are others I’ve left out, please forgive the omission!)

Joan Baez and Elvis Costello

Last week, I was at a benefit for pancreatic cancer research, organized by my former boss at Regency Artists, Triad Artists and Wiliam Morris Agency, Peter Grosslight.  It was a bit of a trip down memory lane, running in to a lot of concert promoters I’m particularly fond of like Jim Koplik, Melissa Miller Ormond, Larry Vallon, Rick Franks and Mark Campana, to name a few from my days as an agent.  I have really great memories of those days.  I also saw Larry Magid (fmr Electric Factory Concerts in Philadelphia) and Ron Delsener, New York concert impresario, both of whom tried unsuccessfully to get me fired because I was selling shows to their competitors.  No hard feelings, I did a lot of business with both after that.  Interestingly, Larry ended up buying the concert business of Stephen Starr, then his biggest competitor, now a successful restauranteur.  

 

One of the artists performing at the benefit was Joan Baez, an artist I worked with when I was an agent.  I remembered trying to convince her to sing some Elvis Costello songs.  At the time, Joan was looking to broaden her repertoire with some contemporary artists.  It seemed like a natural match to me that an artist like Joan, who was so closely aligned with Bob Dylan, master lyricist, would embrace another credible artist like Elvis Costello, another brilliant wordsmith. Unfortunately, I don’t believe Joan ever did sing any Elvis Costello songs; maybe because Linda Ronstadt had already done it, who knows.  I still think that Joan covering a song like “Pills and Soap,” or “Brilliant Mistake” would have been great.  It did get me thinking, who of today’s credible artists would be an interesting discovery for Joan Baez?

 

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