While the seeds that produced the modern concert business were planted decades ago by pioneering agent Frank Barsalona — who died Thanksgiving day — and though he effectively quit the business when he merged his Premier Talent with what was then William Morris Agency in 2002, his impact is still very much felt today by those he touched in the industry he played a significant role in building.
Barsalona’s influence reaches the top of the contemporary music business. “He offered me my first job; he sold me my first national acts,” recalls Irving Azoff, chairman/CEO of Live Nation Entertainment/Front Line Management, who describes Barsalona as a “principled and classy guy.” In fact, Azoff tells Billboard.biz, Barsalona “doesn’t get nearly enough credit for his impact on the business. An era has passed.”
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