...A BAND ON THE ROCKS - Excerpt #11 (Allman Brothers)
(From"BABYSITTING A BAND ON THE ROCKS" -available at Newbury Comics locations throughout the Northeast and online at LTCDS.com > Webstore > Books.)
"I often tell people that I learned more about business from Van Halen than any MBA program could’ve taught me, our legal obligation to segregate the brown M&Ms so preposterous yet so profound. But at earlier times in my brief career in the entertainment business I found myself dealing with the ethical dilemma of knowingly not complying with contractual demands, instances where I was forced to compromise against my own juvenile but usually sound judgement. Two pickles in particular still stick in my craw − one with Judas Priest and a second with The Allman Brothers Band...
[John] Scher [the manager of Jack Bruce, of Cream fame] inevitably
saw the advertising that we were running and recognized that Jack Bruce’s name was nowhere near the same size as that of the Allmans; in fact it was nowhere to be found. Despite his demand being both impractical and unreasonable, Scher threw a fit and lodged a formal complaint with Premier Talent, Bruce’s booking agents and one of Mark’s biggest supporters. In response Mark had me sign my name as Ad Manager to a letter he wrote in defense of our non-compliance, a missive laced with passiveaggression and no logical legal standing. Though no one was about to litigate the matter – everyone knows that with lawsuits of that sort the only winners are the attorneys – in the long corridor from locker room to the stage I took the heat for our lame response. Jane, a top executive at Premier, stopped me in my tracks. “Gregg, you know that you’re wrong, right? You don’t have a leg to stand on. You even left Jack off of the [backstage] passes for God’s sake!” Indeed, earlier in the evening we had been forced to add a bold “JB” with a Sharpie to our preprinted backstage passes when Bruce’s road manager had realized the slight. Scher had overheard my
exchange with Jane and gloated over the awkward position he had put us (actually me) in, notching one in the win column of his ongoing rivalry with Mark even though his client had been rendered anonymous to the general public. Following on Jane’s heels he got in my face himself, his “So there!” smirk saying more than any words could..."