Friday, January 04, 2013

Azoff, to continue to manage Fleetwood Mac after leaving Live Nation

When the news broke on New Years Eve that Irving Azoff had stepped down from his position at Live Nation as chairman and CEO of Front Line Entertainment, it came as a bit of a shock.  It wasn't initially clear at the time what the status of Fleetwood Mac or it's members was in terms of artist representation.  But according to RollingStone, Fleetwood Mac will still be managed by Mr. Azoff. 

"Azoff, 65, will continue to manage the Eagles, Aguilera, Fleetwood Mac, Van Halen and more of his biggest clients; he has a two-year non-compete agreement with Live Nation, the world's biggest concert promoter, but can work on projects involving recorded music, TV, movies and music and book publishing."

Mr. Azoff will continue to manage these artists under his Azoffmusic Management. Lindsey Buckingham signed with Irving just a couple of years ago - so it seems he's still connected with Irving.  Where Stevie stands, I'm not sure. Stevie's managed by Howard Kaufman and Sheryl Louis. Howard was a partner in Front Line Management with Irving at the time of the merger with Ticketmaster and with Front Line staying with Live Nation, It's not clear what her status is whether she's still with Howard and Front Line under Live Nation, or if Howard left with Irving and therefore took Stevie and whomever else he managed with him. When Irving left, leaving behind Front Line he only retained a select number of artists he managed directly ie the Eagles (who he's managed since the 70's) and Christina Aguilera.  Presumably Lindsey falls under Azoffmusic Management. This is also where I'm assuming Fleetwood Mac falls.  It's entirely possible that Stevie as a solo artist could be in that mix as well - or it's possible that for her solo work she's still with Howard under Front Line which is still with Live Nation.  Confusing!

The Back Story
This is how I understand it... Irving Azoff and Howard Kaufman were partners in Front Line Management from '74 to '83 when Irving decided to leave Front Line to become president of MCA Records in 1983.  Irving continued managing artists like the Eagles under Azoffmusic Management.  Mr Kaufman then created a talent management company, HK Management, who at the time managed Stevie Nicks.  In 2005 Irving and Howard formed a partnership and merged their two companies to reform Front Line, the management company. Now Stevie is with Front Line guided by Howard and Sheryl Louis. Front Line as a management company then began acquiring other smaller management companies and artists bring them under the Front Line umbrella becoming a rather large management company with a stable of managers who managed well over 200 artists, some of the biggest in the industry. Irving then took Front Line and merged it with Ticketmaster in 2008 and became the head of Ticketmaster Entertainment. Front Line became a subsidiary of Ticketmaster. After that merger, he then merged Ticketmaster with Live Nation in 2010 becoming Chairman of Live Nation in 2011.  Again, Front Line was a subsidiary. With the artist and ticketing and with Live Nation and all the venues they own the world over, from a business point of view, it just made sense to have everything in house. But according to what Mr. Azoff is saying in these departure interviews, with Ticketmaster and Live Nation being public companies, you are restricted in what you can do and he felt smothered.... So he felt it was time to move on.

But it's good to hear Fleetwood Mac will still be well looked after.

Check out billboard Biz and these two articles in The Hollywood Reporter here and here plus the latest in Rolling Stone "Irving Azoff's Live Nation Exit Leaves Many Questions Unanswered
Powerful manager was frustrated in efforts to reform concert business"

I find this stuff kinda fascinating, but oh so confusing!

12 comments:

Top Hat Entertainment said...

My bf is an ex music biz person he has a colleague that works for IA. Mahalo/thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

Stevie fired Frontline and Irving after the 1986 David Letterman incident. When "I Can't Wait" was a hit, Letterman tried to get Stevie on his show, and when she wouldn't go on, he started making jokes about her new song "I Gained Weight". She was in Australia with Bob Dylan and Tom Petty and Frontline issued a cease and desist order to Letterman to stop talking about her. Obviously in show business that is a stupid thing to do. It only made things worse. Then in 1994 when Stevie finally did appear on Letterman for the first time, he brought up the whole mess, without talking about his insulting comments and she said that when she heard about what was happening while in Australia, she fired Frontline. That is why there is the line in "Welcome To The Room . . . Sara" about 'Frontline baby', which was from "Tango In The Night" released in 1987. She has since been with Howard Kaufman and then later Sheryl Louis also, who worked for HK management.

Anonymous said...

David Letterman never mentioned her weight during those segments.

Anonymous said...

No, not when Letterman has ever had her on his show since her first time in 1994. But in 1987 he made jokes for weeks about her weight, calling her new song "I Gained Weight". Stevie obviously took the high road and let is pass, since she has done his show many times since 1994.

Anonymous said...

Letterman's an a**. Pure and simple.

Anonymous said...

The funny thing is, Stevie didn't have a weight problem during the ROCK A LITTLE period - that came later.

Anonymous said...

To the last poster... yes, she did (but who cares). See the "I Can't Wait" video outtake photos...

Anonymous said...

Management in transition before the start of the tour is not good for the band- Azoff has left Live Nation, yet will continue to represent the band, with Live Nation and Azoff not in partnership. This may equal a very messy tour. Sure, the parties all want success, but whoever has replaced Azoff at Live Nation will be on one side, and Azoff and the band on the other. Ideally, they'll work together, but it's a rocky way to start a tour. Live Nation and Azoff being separate entities can't be anything but a source of conflict, and the band may be asked to choose sides. It's not good.

Short tour, I predict, with not many, if any, dates added. The new regime won't want to deal with Azoff- eras end- and when Azoff left, Live Nation became a completely different organization that the band is not familiar with. They'll have to choose Azoff OR Live Nation, sooner or later.

Anonymous said...

Nope, her wight "problems" started in -87 after coke and rehab.

John Seger said...

Wrong! I watched Letterman EVERY NIGHT and even have those Nicks related posts recorded. HE NEVER EVER spoke about her weight. He'd run the sexy part of the "I can't weight" video of Stevie doing that cool hand motion thing and shimmering to the side with her cleavage. He'd simply say "Hal, play that Stevie Nicks video while I dial this number, etc etc" He'd have the part of the clip playing over and over for every night a few weeks. It was all cute and funny. NOT ONCE did he make a crack about her weight. And would he? She was still very tiny in 1986

Anonymous said...

that's right John, I too watched Dave Letterman then and now and during that time, he showed the I can't wait video that showed her cleavage. He thought she was sexy and wanted her on the show. When her management acted like goons, he ran with it. I even remember he had a cold during that time and asked Meatball management to not sue him because he had a cold. LOL

John Seger said...

@anon..LOL I remember that comment! Wasn't it weasle management though?

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