Mixing Business, Pleasure and Brands

MSG Chairman, Cablevision CEO Shows Passion for Synergistic Riffing

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A great example of how passion for music and the business of music and entertainment can fit together so well has just popped into the SFS mailbox courtesy of Ticketmaster, with an offer for customers to download a free new album by JD and The Straight Shot.

"Right on Time" features guest performances by "two of the greatest musicians to ever touch a six-string": Joe Walsh of the Eagles and pedal steel guitar virtuoso Robert Randolph, known for leading his own Family Band and collaborating with icons such as Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, Dave Matthews and others.

Not content with offering the free album, the band is also offering, via their website, a nice brand partnership in the shape of a contest for a "no purchase required" Gibson guitar signed by Joe Walsh and the leader of the band, JD himself, James Dolan.

Whilst not trumpeted anywhere in the promotion of the album or band, Mr. Dolan is in fact chairman of Madison Square Garden Entertainment and president-CEO of MSG's corporate parent, Cablevision Systems Corp. MSG's many entities include some of the most iconic rock venues in the world, and although Mr. Dolan no doubt has connections with some of the greatest rock acts in the world through his venues, he is definitely delivering this project on some serious musical merit of his own -- and an undoubted passion to just play some goddamn great music.

From the band's site:
"I'm just like thousands of guys who picked up a guitar when they were 15, except that I never put it down," he says. "Music is one of my earliest passions and has always been a part of my life. I think you can grow up without growing old," Dolan says. "We still enjoy timeless blues and classic rock, but our new material has a certain energy and vitality to it that can connect to music lovers of all ages. Maybe I'll even inspire some 15-year-old kid to pick up a guitar."
Never mind the 15-year-olds, this 47-year-old has dusted down his 1972 Gibson Les Paul Custom one more time ... so keep your eyes peeled for an appearance at some of those holiday parties!

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Mike Tunnicliffe owns Tuna Music LLC, a New York- and London-based management company. Find out more at miketunnicliffe.com.