O2's in the News - VIP-Booking


O2's in the News - VIP-Booking


McGowan’s Musings:

So, unless somebody tells me different, on

the 13th of September, Elbow getting the

Bestival crowd to hum the theme to Star

Trek, boldly saw out another festival season

– where does the time go!? If this was

truly the last event of the season (although I

am getting reports of a later one, Loopallu,

in the Scottish Highlands) it certainly concluded

things in fine and optimistic form,

starting in 2004 with 6000 people, the sun

shone on 40,000 people at this edition on

the Isle of Wight. Bestival featured a fancy

dress parade with an outer space theme,

organiser BBC Radio 1 DJ Rob Da Bank,

commented, “People come down here to

lose themselves for three days, and dressing

up helps with that.” On the UK mainland

and not far down the coast, dressing

up was the last thing that the organisers of

The Beachdown Festival, planned for the

last weekend in August in my home town

of Brighton, were thinking of, losing themselves

was probably more in mind as this

second edition was cancelled at short notice,

leaving much in disarray.

The very different fortunes of these two

festivals sums up the volatility of a vast

area of the events industry in which, as we

said in the last issue’s festival report, absolutely

nothing can be taken for granted!

However, whilst, according to BBC News,

an army of aliens, astronauts and assorted

space cadets frolicked on the Isle of Wight I

retreated to the garden of a pub in Kent for

a much smaller festival, to hear some great

music from musicians who have in their

time played to huge audiences around

the world. Hamish Stuart of Average White

Band and Wings fame, and his partner run

VIP- News

PreMIuM ›› VOl. 117 ›› SePTeMBer 2009

the pub, and for the second year he invited

friends to play the Oare Festival. On the

Saturday and Sunday, talent such as Andy

Newmark, one time drummer for Sly & The

Family Stone, who has played with pretty

much everyone from a couple of Beatles to

Bowie, Clapton, Gilmore et al, Chris Difford

of Squeeze, Suggs from Madness, Paul

Young, Pete Cox of Go West, Who bassist

Pino Paladino, plus Hamish’s own band,

played great music alongside local musicians

in a very intimate setting – with real

beer at pub prices! Don’t tell your friends!

I don’t want too many people getting to

hear about it, nor I think do the villagers – I

heard one old lady proclaim, “It’s the only

time I thank God for being deaf – I can’t

hear the bloody racket!”- Now there’s considered

criticism if ever I heard it...

Talking of deafness a recent Reuters report

struck a dimly heard but very personally

relevant chord with me. The hearing in

my left ear was damaged when I worked


Allan McGowan


briefly with the band Saxon – not during

a gig and not their fault – whilst walking

in front of the PA stacks in an empty hall

I was almost knocked over by the howl

which emitted when some nameless person

irresponsibly threw up all the faders at

one time. It took a couple of weeks before

I realised that the deafness was not temporary,

checks revealed that I had lost several

of the frequencies in the left ear, and

of late, after a few very loud festival bands

this summer I think things have got worse,

I’m having tests tomorrow, the right one

still works so I can still hear those bloody

seagulls and if you’re offering to buy me a

drink then you’re loud and clear!

The report concerns the ultra loud My

Bloody Valentine (the elderly lady I mentioned

before was probably a headbanging

fan!) teaming up with earplug company

Earplugshop.com to finally give out

earplugs at concerts. Gigs regularly exceed

the recommended decibel limit that

it is safe to be exposed to for any length of

time, with sound levels easily reaching 115

decibels, which causes hearing damage in

less than 30 seconds, the safe level being

85 decibels. More people than ever are exposing

themselves to loud music because

of the growth in live music but according

to a poll, 81 per cent of people still don’t

realise that they can permanently damage

their hearing after just 15 minutes of

exposure to loud music. I once heard the

redoubtable Seymour Stein asked what

piece of cutting edge music technology

he found most useful in these days of constant

innovation – he replied, “My ears!”

He’s right – look after them.

So, with that rather serious bit of advice,

Ladies and Gentlemen, here’s the News...

I said. THE NEWS!

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VIP- News - September 2009

Colophon ››

VIP-News is published by:


26 York Street

London W1U 6pZ

Managing director:

Ronni Didriksen


General Manager:

Peter Briggs


writer and editorial:

Allan McGowan



Manfred Tari


For advertising enquiries pls. contact

Peter Briggs pb@vip-booking.com

or +44 870 755 0092


Pekaye Graphics, Phuket – Thailand


O2’s in the News

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

New dublin O2 tops the world ranking

Rebuild and your fortunes will change

seems to have been the maxim of the O2

Dublin, the remodelled Point. In its first six

months of business, the venue has become

the most popular mid-size concert venue

in the world. The O2 Dublin reopened on

December 16 after a 14 month renovation

costing €80m.

Boosted by the appearances of acts like Britney

Spears, Girls Aloud and Pink, the Dublin

facility has sold more tickets in the first six

months of the year than any other 10,000 to

15,000 capacity venues. The O2 Dublin can

accommodate 14,000, with an all-seated

event limit of 9,500. According to reliable

concert industry publication Pollstar, some

514,000 tickets were bought from January 1

to June 30.

Amongst venues of any size the O2 Dublin

is apparently the third busiest in the world,

after the O2 London with 1.2m admissions

and Manchester Evening News Arena with

750,000. Both these facilities hold more

than 20,000 people.

As well as increasing potential audiences by

60%, the refurbishment changed the existing

rectangular layout to an amphitheatre

configuration with a 54 metre-long stage,

capable of hosting even the biggest touring

productions. In the past, acts like George

Michael and Madonna were unable to bring

their shows to the Point.

The closure of the Point left the capital without

a large concert venue, meaning many

acts bypassed the republic and went to Bel-


O2 Arena - Dublin

fast instead; this year its Odyssey Arena was

ranked sixth in the world, with sales of just

under 315,000 tickets.

VIP-News spoke to Mike Adamson, chief

executive of the O2 Dublin and Live Nation

about the success of the venue:

VIP-News: You must be very pleased with

these first half year results, what do you

think has brought about this success in particular?

Mike Adamson: The O2 Dublin has surpassed

all expectations with over 600,000

music fans through our doors within the

first half year of 2009. I believe that we at

Live Nation have created a unique venue

for the Irish music fans by building an amphitheatre

style venue with close seat distances

to the stage, good clear sightlines for

all and superb acoustic quality.

VIP-News: Many of the comments about the

venue indicate that it already has character;

something that newly built venues often

take a while to acquire, how has this been


»The O2 was designed purely

for music and therefore we did not

have to compromise this design by

adding conflicting requirements

for sport events«

- Mike Adamson

Mike Adamson: The O2 is unique in that we

have built the venue within the 1878 heritage

walls of the old building while carrying

through the character of the old into the

new. This has provided our audiences with

an enhanced, warm and comfortable environment

with none of the clinical atmosphere

associated with many new venues.

The O2 is the largest indoor purpose built

music concert venue in Europe. The O2 was

designed purely for music and therefore we

did not have to compromise this design by

adding conflicting requirements for sport


VIP-News: Many territories, the US in particular,

have been finding it difficult to sell


VIP- News - September 2009

tickets, leading to discounting and other

measures to maintain audience figures. Is

this not the case in Ireland?

Mike Adamson: The Irish music fan contributes

greatly to The O2’s success. They

are amongst Europe’s highest per capita

figures for attending live concerts. So we

have a great music fan base in Ireland and

now we have the venue to match the fan’s

enthusiasm. Fortunately the acts followed

too with great performances from Beyon-

A Year of O2 world, Berlin

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

When the O2 World opened a year ago

Europe was given its most modern multifunctional

arena, on September 10th 2009,

the Anschutz Entertainment Group, owner

and operator of the O2 World, reviewed

the venue’s first year of operation which

saw 1.48 million guests attend 138 sport,

music and entertainment events.

“Our hopes and expectations have been excelled”,

says Detlef Kornett, CEO of the Anschutz

Entertainment Group in Germany.

“We welcomed an average of 10,000 people

per event, which means that the O2 World

has been well received in Berlin. It is difficult

to pick out any highlights, because so many

stars played at the arena, but I was very

pleased with the enormous attendance at

the ALBA Berlin and Eisbäre Berlin games.”

René Schuster

René Schuster, CEO of Telefónica o2 Ger-

many, commented, “More than a naming

right’ -this was our motto from the very be-

ginning. Helpful o2 Angels, a separate ‘Blue

Lane’ entrance, free drinks at the bar of the

Blue Room, seat upgrades and a velotaxi

service -we generated lots of benefits for the

visitors of the o2 World in general and in par-

cé, Bob Dylan, Andrea Bocelli, Tina Turner,

AC/DC, Neil Young, Kings Of Leon, Pink,

Leonard Cohen to mention a few.

VIP-News: Have the artists been as impressed

as the ticket buyers?

Mike Adamson: Our two important clients

the audience and the artist have both

voiced their opinions with enthusiasm, in

that, it’s a great venue to play and a venue

for Irish music fans to be proud of. It’s all

ticular for our customers to double the positive

experience on location. The experiences

during the last year have shown us, that this

is the right strategy: 80 per cent of all visitors

would recommend the o2 World. We are now

looking forward to the second year of the o2

World, in which we will surprise customers

with further highlights.”

Over the last twelve months the O2 World

hosted concerts with Metallica, Tina Turner,

Elton John, Alicia Keys, Udo Jürgens,

Leonard Cohen, Beyonce´, Neil Young,

Coldplay, Britney Spears, Die Toten Hosen

and Herbert Grönemeyer. Also Germany´s

most successful tv entertainment-show

“Wetten, dass…?” was broadcast from the

arena and the music industry celebrated

its stars at the German music award show

“ECHO 2009”.

Sporting highlights featured NHL-and NBA

stars , and boxing World Champion Vitali

Klitschko celebrated his impressive comeback

against Samuel Peter. The Final Four

Tournament, comprising the European

Basketball elite, set new sportive and organizational

standards with no other basketball

team attracting more fans than Alba

Berlin. Ice Hockey team Eisbären Berlin won

another championship, and tripled their attendance

in their first year at the O2 World.

Changeovers were usually carried out over

night, since concerts and sport events take

place in a constant alternation. Mike Keller,

O2 World General Manager explained,

“138 events in one year require that a con-


about lifting the experience for both artist

and the audience and this I believe we

have achieved in a unique way with this

new style of venue. Well, the Romans were

also pretty successful with the amphitheatre

concept - I’m surprised it has taken us in

the music industry so long to repeat their


Acts scheduled for the second half of the

year include Fleetwood Mac, Green Day

and Elton John.

cert or game takes place every two or three

days. With 20 events per month we had our

highest event frequency last December and

January. This demands a high degree of flexibility

and a major operational readiness of

all involved parties. Alterations are needed

at nearly every concert or game and most of

the events entail some sort of special modifications.

Whether it’s 1,800 tons of sand,

which were scattered throughout the arena

previous to the “Night of the Jumps” and

removed firsthand afterwards; the 61 tons

of light-and sound-equipment, which were

required for Britney Spears´ only concert in

Germany or the 800 members of security

staff, who were responsible for the safety in

the arena during the Euroleague Final Four

basketball tournament. From the beginning

on we had no problems in taking on these

challenges due to the excellent co-operation

between promoters, service providers, public

authorities and the members of our team.”

The following essential facts indicate in a

very real way how audiences have taken

to the O2 World: More than 1 million cups

of beer were drunk and 100,000 fried and

curried sausages and 40,000 pretzels were

sold at the 138 events!

Highlights of the O2 World agenda for

the next few months feature Green Day,

Depeche Mode, Fleetwood Mac, the Backstreet

Boys, MUSE, aha, Mario Barth, the

MTV Europe Music Awards and Arthur

Abraham´s boxing match against Jermain

Taylor in the course of the Super-Six-Tournament.


VIP- News - September 2009

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VIP- News - September 2009

Madonna Out


Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com


According to data released by Live

Nation Inc, Madonna has smashed

her own record for top-grossing

tour by a solo artist by playing more

shows in bigger venues.

The ‘Sticky & Sweet’ world tour came

to an end in Tel Aviv on September

2, having taken $408 million after

playing to more than 3.5 million fans

at 85 shows, way up on the 2006

‘Confessions’ tour which grossed

$194 million from 1.2 million fans at

60 shows. A Live Nation spokesman

said the previous trek featured many

arena stops, while this latest one

centred on bigger stadiums.

The Rolling Stones still hold the

record for the top grossing tour

overall, the 2005-2007 ‘Bigger Bang’

drew 4.7 million people to 144 shows

raking in $558 million.

Berlin Stayed Open for Business

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

Many in the industry may have the

impression that this year’s Popkomm

cancellation left the fine City of Berlin

bereft of showcase and conference

activity. However various companies

and individuals decided that this was

not to be the case. During the original

Popkomm dates Sep. 16-19, various

music events focused on live music

showcases and the business took

place in Berlin.

The first ‘all2gethernow’ conference

took place; Berlin Music Days (BerMu-

Da) presented an extensive electronica

showcase festival, also Helsinki in

Berlin was presented by the Finnish

Music Export office as was Nordic Revelations,

a Showcase Event presenting

Scandinavian rock and metal-talent.

Network Europe, the Association for

agents, bookers, promoters and tal-

ent buyers working in the live music

business in Europe, went ahead with

its 2nd Annual General Meeting this

year on Sep. 17, and organised a showcase

night in the Maschinenhaus in

the Kulturbrauerei – one of the usual

Popkomm venues, featuring Katrine

Ottosen (DNK), Balthazar (BEL) and

Heike Has The Giggles (ITA).

With none of the VIP writers in place,

we are grateful to Rob Berends of Paperclip

Agency in the Netherlands, in

Berlin in his capacity as Board Member

of Network Europe, for this report, and

his additional comments on future

Berlin plans (see following item)

The first two all2gethernow days

(Wed/Thu) were the camp-days (barcamps,

as they call them). I witnessed

a bit of the Wednesday afternoon.


The set-up made me think of Network

Europe meetings (round table discussions),

if managed properly a much

more effective way than a panel behind

a table on a platform I believe.

What I witnessed was maybe not perfect

in set-up, but it worked well. The

topics and the time spent on these

showed a great, urgent, need for answers

to the lack of income and control

in the present ways of distributing

music (Internet). It made sense to me

that these discussions were mainly

attended and organised by non-livemusic


Network europe Meeting

Our Members Meeting yesterday was

not very well attended, but highly

productive. The following changes

are among those to be expected, but

are not formal decisions yet because

those NE-members not present here

in Berlin still have a chance to vote via


NE will focus much more on cooperation

and exchange of information, and

bands/artists, throughout the year,

backed up by a much more frequent

News Letter that goes out to our entire

mailing list (members and non-members),

with room for news from all the

members. This and other activities and

priorities will make NE focus less on the

two Member Meetings each year (although

these will still happen).

The two Member Meetings a year will

be much more a platform to introduce

people to each other and to do business,

exchange talent and think internally.

Speed Meetings

Our Members Meetings will be complemented

by open Speed Meetings,

where non-members are more than

welcome to join NE, and will be global,

not solely European. NE will choose

one focus-country each year and will

have a third larger Member Meeting in

that country. There will be one annual


VIP- News - September 2009

Membership Fee, rather than an annual

Membership Fee, plus separate Meeting

Registration Fees. For most members, the

yearly costs to NE will be about the same.

NE will introduce four different levels

of Fees (25%, 50%, 75%, 100%) for independent

companies from countries in the

world with GDP (Gross Domestic Product)

below EUR 10.000/20.000/30.000 or above

EUR 30.000. This will stimulate a true panglobal

development of NE’s membership

list. Those who were members in 2009 will

get a substantial discount in 2010, those

attending Member Meetings in 2010 or

later years will get a substantial discount

in the following year.

NE’s constitution has been rewritten thoroughly

to reflect proposals for improvement

made by NE’s former and current

Board and NE’s Auditors. This means that

the prevalent position of the Members

Meeting has been described more clearly,

that voting via e-mail has been introduced

as legitimate, and that the minimum

number of Board members is now 3 (not

5). NE has more to announce, and will do

so at a press-conference during EuroSonic

Noorderslag in Groningen in January.

For instance, we’re working on a new

name for the Association. Bar the e-mailvotes

still to follow, it looks like the cur-


rent Board (Attilio Perissinotti, Thomas

Ryjord, Rob Berends) and the current Auditors

(Alessandro Ceccarelli a.k.a. Cecca,

Hilde Spille) have been re-elected.

Network Europe



The team behind all2gethernow


VIP- News - September 2009



VIP- News - September 2009

First F1 rOCKS

event for


Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

F1 Rocks, Singapore

All The Worlds (ATW), Universal Mu-

sic’s live music events joint venture

presents its inaugural and world premiere

F1 ROCKS event alongside the

Formula One nighttime grand prix

in Singapore from September 24th-

26th, supported by LG Electronics.

The event aims to bring together the

world’s most popular annual sporting

series with live by some of the

world’s biggest acts, to attract both

motor racing and music fans alike.

Amongst others Beyoncé, Black

Eyed Peas, ZZ Top, Simple Minds,

N*E*R*D and Chinese pop legend

Jacky Cheung will perform at Fort

Canning Park, Singapore. The show

will also feature guest appearances

from top FORMULA ONE drivers and


Christof Huber

Christof Huber on elMF and


Manfred Tari mt@vip-booking.com

VIP-News caught up with the very busy

Christof Huber of St Gallen Festival to

get an update on his ongoing work

with Festival organisation, Yourope

and the future of the European Live

Music Forum.

VIP-News: What is currently going on

with the ELMF?

Christof Huber: Well, there are plans

to put the association into hibernation.

We are discussing this right now

within the remaining board. And we

hope to have a proper solution very

soon. Currently the ELMF is not that

active but, so far, no final decisions

have been made regarding putting it

into hibernation.

VIP-News: And what’s going on at


Huber: The situation at Yourope is

completely different and is, I would

say, very good. We have now more

than 60 members within this association.

The next planned projects to be

held at Bucks Chiltern New University

in the UK are the 8th edition of a twoday

seminar concerning health and

safety which has already gained over

50 registrations – a big success I would

say, and one day before this, on September

23rd, we will hold the second

sustainability seminar in cooperation

with Green and Clean and greenerfestival.com,

which now has over 25 registrations.

From my point of view these

projects are doing very well and heading

in the right direction.

Then there are the first European Festival

Awards. I just returned from discussing

the next steps for this in London.

As you may know, the European


Festival Awards in cooperation with

Virtual Festivals Europe and the Eurosonic

Festival will take place at the

Grand Theatre in Groningen during

Noorderslag/Eurosonic on Wednesday,

January 13th. We are now working to

prepare the launch of this award-show,

which is a big event for us at Yourope.

It is an exciting project for us in order to

strengthen the profile for festivals and

to bring them more closely together. I

consider this a very important step forward

for Yourope.

VIP-News: What is Yourope doing on a

political level? How would you like to

see the political profile of Festivals in

Europe shaping up?

Huber: This is still a difficult topic which

the ELMF was originally supposed to

tackle, but was probably not fully prepared.

We now have to consider which

direction we should go in.

VIP-News: When it comes to creative industries,

there are already some countries

or governments that are bringing

live music and the tourism industry together.

Are there any planned activities

that have this topic on the agenda?

Huber: The territories, as far as I am

aware, that talk about creative industries

are mainly the UK, France and

Spain. It is difficult for Yourope as an association

to work in this area on a pan-

European level. Some of our members

are already doing this individually and

really successfully and we will certainly

discuss this issue. This could involve

something like the exchange of information

and looking at how other festivals

are handling this, how they get

funding and how they get sponsors

etc. We will have to see. It is certainly a


VIP- News - September 2009

topic that is often discussed, but I have to

say it is not at the top of our agenda.

VIP-News: For many years Yourope was

represented at the ILMC, but in 2009, for

the first time Yourope wasn’t as active as

in the past. Are you likely to reconsider being

more active at the Conference?

Huber: Let’s correct this. We have always

held our general assembly on Friday morning

at the ILMC. It was just a matter of not

being involved in the conference in terms

of the meetings and panels. We discussed

this internally and if I may venture an opinion,

I would wish that the ILMC would undertake

a little more effort to invest in its

conference program to serve its guests and

should not only expect its delegates to do

so. I also have the feeling that a lot of delegates

of the ILMC are more interested in the

bar than in valuable conference sessions.

VIP-News: Does that mean that you are

pretty pleased which what you achieve in

Groningen in the Netherlands?

Huber: This is of course a different situation.

We certainly do have a very good

relationship with the promoters of Eurosonic/Noorderslag.

We have a long-term

cooperation going on with them and we

always try to get involved and to develop

projects there. A very good example of this

is that we have even extended our partnership

with them and are doing an extra

evening for the European Festival Awards.

It’s definitely the event which most of our

Yourope members attend. It is just a perfect

platform for us to meet and talk, and

to do things together such as a health &

safety seminars, panels and meetings. It

has beeb a really good cooperation since

year one of Yourope.

VIP-News: There are new attempts in

terms of getting funding from the European

Commission for ETEP 2010. Are you

involved in these proceedings?

Huber: Due to the ongoing contact we are

involved in the process. They keep me informed

of the situation, what they trying


to achieve, and what kind of influence this

could have on the numbers of festivals

participating. We’ve just met in London

and had a whole day discussing all the issues

of ETEP (European Talent Exchange

Programme) and the Eurosonic Festival.

VIP-News: But in general I guess Europe

is quiet pleased with the results ETEP has

achieved so far?

Huber: Yourope is an important partner

for ETEP and is even a founding partner

for the project. We are therefore in regular

contact with Ruud Berends, the project

manager for ETEP who keeps us informed

about the current developments. We were

involved since the first edition and helped

in putting ETEP together. It certainly is a

success story, and that’s what I like about

our cooperation with Eurosonic/Noorderslag.

We’ve tried and achieved something

rather than talking about it for 10 years. It

is all about getting your stuff together and

just getting on with it, this can then lead

to a success.


VIP- News - September 2009

Contesting GeMA Concert rates

Manfred Tari mt@vip-booking.com

In February 2009 the German copyright

collection society drastically increased its

rates for concerts, or at least it aimed to do

so. The German concert industries associations

IDKV and VDKV of course immediately

protested these rate increases. VIP-News

spoke with Jens Michow the president of

the IDKV about the current situation of the

rate debate in Germany.

VIP-News: What is the current state of play

regarding the negotiation between the

concert associations and GEMA?

»This leads to the conclusion

that it no longer makes any sense

to promote concerts at all«

- Jens Michow

Jens Michow: Well, we just had another

talk in Munich. So far we are just in the

middle of the decision at the so-called arbitration

court of the German Patentamt.

This is not a real court but it issues a preliminary

court decision supposed to find

a solution which considers both opinions

and both parts for this finding. At a matter

of fact everybody should know that

GEMA raised the 1.87 net rates for the

use of repertoire at concerts to 8%, an increase

of more than four and a half times.

With this in mind it very understandable

that no one in our business and certainly

no promoter can live with it. We instituted

a survey by the GFK, a well know market

research company, that showed that

for most concert companies that the net

profit result for the average promoter is

about 9 percent of revenue before taxes.

So of this 9 percent before taxes, promoters

are supposed to give away 8%. This

leads to the conclusion that it no longer

makes any sense to promote concerts at


VIP-News: But nevertheless, in other countries

such as Switzerland and Austria, as

well as in the Netherlands there is a much

higher copyright rates for concerts. In the

case of Austria it is about 8.9 percent, it is

almost the same in Switzerland and it’s 7

percent in the Netherlands.

Jens Michow: It is actually not. Let’s start

with the UK, this country is with no doubt

one of the most important countries probably

within the world and at least in Europe

for the export and import of music,

but you have to pay only 3 percent to PRS.

If you look at Switzerland, Austria or even

in the Scandinavian countries, you find out

that as we have to, you have root fees to

pay to the copyright collection societies

as a promoter you have several opportunities

for deductions. Our rates so far are

at 3.9 percent, and when I told you before

that we only paid 1.87 percent, this figure

includes all deductions that are allowed to

us, these deductions considered the costs

of staging a concert, and were considered

for promoters that do more than one concert,

then promoters that do at least 20

concerts a year, get another 20% percent

reduction and so on. And these deductions

worked out at the 1.87 %, which we

finally paid. So they may have been considered

to be all right for many years in the

past, but nobody can tell us any reason

why it should not be this way any longer.

At least the measure for what is appropriate,

because the courts will always say appropriate,

was what happened in the past.

So when it comes down to it I would say

1.87 net or 3.9 basic is not enough. We are

always prepared to negotiate something

that is reasonable, but more reasonable

than they consider it to be now, no problem

but to raise it up to 4.5 more as it is

now, is without any reason and is just totally

beyond wherever you should place it.

VIP-News: What about the arbitrary court

decision, is it binding for both parties?

Jens Michow: No, not all. It is a proposal,

a proposal for both parties. At least it is a

measure that clever thinking people might

think to be appropriate. So whatever happens

one of the sides will go to the normal

court, which is the Oberlandesgericht in

Munich. And then if it does not fit our needs

we will even go to the highest court in Germany

which is called the BGH and that

might take years and this is why we went

to GEMA, which is not only criticized by the

promoters at the moment, but is criticized

from many different sides in a petition,


Jens Michow

someone we don’t even know, appears

from the club area having raised more

than a hundred thousand signatures saying

GEMA has to change their system. Ok,

that has nothing to do with us, point one,

point two, there are people who are writing

stories saying the GEMA has to batch everything

together, nothing to do with us. This

only shows that many sides at the moment

are not satisfied with the GEMA system. So

we just said recently to GEMA it might be

appropriate that you consider how great

the damage might be if all this goes on for

the next 3 years even, because you never

know when the highest court in Germany

will even have a date to hear us. So as a matter

of fact we can only suggest to GEMA to

think very, very carefully how bad things

could get if they don’t find a reasonable

compromise between both parties.

VIP-News: When will the arbitrary court

make it’s ruling?

Jens Michow: Middle of October - that is

what we also told the GEMA yesterday in

Munich, you don’t have much time. They

should talk to their review board I guess

because they made the decision to raise it

up to ten percent less then twenty percent

for all those who are part of an association.

They get 20 percent less so that is why we

almost discuss about the 8 %. As a matter

of fact they should talk to their supervisory

board, I’m pretty sure this decision about

ten or twenty percent was made in 2007.

If they would go back the executive board,

then would go back to the supervisory

board people may have changed their

minds in the past two years anyhow. So we

suggested they research sincerely with the

greatest care whether they should not revise

their diplomacy of the past two years,

and negotiate with us.


VIP- News - September 2009

Berlin Music week 2010

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

According to a press release the city of

Berlin will host the inaugural edition of

Berlin Music Week in September 2010.

The event is supposedly set to take over

from Popkomm, which had been set to

take place this October in Berlin, but had

been cancelled due, some say, to a lack of

interest. Organizers had hoped to revive

the event next year, but now it is said that

it will be folded into this new event with

substantial backing from the Berlin government.

Organizers hope to see a significant

endowment for the event from the

national government as well.

The owners of PopKomm, Messe Berlin,

are owned by the City, and have it appears

been encouraged, possibly ordered

(?) to cooperate in 2010 with all2gethernow,

BerMuDa (Berlin Music Days), the

Berlin Music Commission and others. Rob

Berends, in Berlin for the Network Europe

meeting, has been informed that Daniel

Barkowski will for now replace event director

Katja Gross (née Bittner) who is now

on her second maternity (Congratula-

Having the right tools for the job is often the key to success. Through our ongoing communication with key Live

Entertainment Industry Professionals, we have developed a range of services to meet the demands of agents, pro-

moters, talent buyers, venue bookers etc. It’s no coincidence that we are now considered to be the No. 1 information

provider for this thriving industry.

tions from all at VIP!). Also Klaus Gropper,

Patricia Schwan, Dirk Schade and earlier

Constanze Althoff have left the team. As

Rob says it seems that a lot has happened

at PopKomm and Berlin Messe!

The press release also states that Berlin

Music Week will include a music conference

with Barcamp, a trade show format,

individual events such as industry meetings

and events organized by associations

and networks, and public performance

events such as an electronic music

festival at venues around the city. Organizers

are planning an extensive national

and international marketing effort and a

number of organizations have signed on

as partners, including the Berlin Music

Commission, the Club Commission and

the VUT (An indie label trade association)

Labcom, Media Board, Popkomm Berlin

organizers and clubs.

“Berlin enjoys an excellent worldwide reputation

as a musical metropolis - and we

intend to expand further. The brand Berlin

Music Week is a crucial strategic Initiative




VIP-Booking.com The VIP-Book


VIP-Booking.com is now the most widely used online The ultimate print directory for the Eu-

Written by our highly merited journalists, Al-

information service for the European Live Entertainment ropean Entertainment Industry, packed

lan McGowan and Manfred Tari, with over 50

Industry with subscribers in over 25 countries. Using the latest with contacts and easy to use. An es-

years of experience between them in the En-

technology and state of the art tools, the service provides insential

reference book for every offi ce

tertainment Industry, VIP-News brings the latdepth

information streamlining the day-to-day operations of providing basic contact information

est news and views directly to your computer

industry professionals, saving both time and money.

and a solid overview.

keeping you up to date at all times.






for Berlin’s music industry: It concentrates

vitality and diversity of the industry.” said

Berlin Senator for Economics, Technology

and Women (?) Harald Wolf in a statement.











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VIP- News - September 2009



VIP- News - September 2009

ASTA Backs OFT Fraudulent

Ticketing web sites Initiative

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

The Association of Secondary Ticket Agents

(ASTA) is backing the ‘Just Tick It’ campaign

proposed by the U.K. Office of Fair Trading

to combat the growing problem presented

by fraudulent ticketing Web sites. An online

survey of 3,000 U.K. consumers revealed

that one in 12 ticket buyers said they have

been caught out by scam ticket sites, with

80% of those in the past year.

The OFT ‘Just Tick It’ campaign warns consumers

about these sites and offers advice

on how to check whether they are legitimate,

outlining six guidance checks for a

Web site offering tickets, including details

of their refund policy, company contacts

and other users’ verdicts on the service.

The Web site www.consumerdirect.gov.

uk/ticketscams outlines full consumer


The month-long Oxjam festival begins on the 28th September

with a series of exclusive, intimate performances from stars including

Editors, VV Brown, Basement Jaxx, Fatboy Slim, Just Jack,

Nitin Sawhney and legendary drummer Tony Allen at a specially

converted Oxjam shop in London.

Editors singer Tom Smith said: “We’ve been supporting Oxjam for

years now, so it’s really exciting for us to be a part of their biggest

music event. Putting on shows in Oxjam’s high street stores is a great

idea, these places are part of everyone’s daily lives these days, come

September they’ll also be the hottest ticket in town.”

Graham Burns, chairman of ASTA, welcomed

the campaign and said in a statement,

“We hope the Office of Fair Trading’s

new Web site gives the consumer more

tools to use in the fight against rogue Web

sites. It is heartening to see that the OFT has

grasped the nettle and is prepared to work

alongside other agencies, including ASTA,

to eradicate the crooks.” ASTA was formed

in 2005 in response to the increase in

rogue sites failing to deliver tickets.

However the secondary ticketing sector

are not all in favour of the campaign,

Viagogo is not a member of ASTA, and in

a statement CEO Eric Baker commented,

“This is nothing new to secondary ticketing.

In fact, for the last three years we have

been advising fans on how to avoid getting

ripped off in the secondary market by offering

a safe and secure ticket exchange.”

Oxjam Festival Helps Poor People Cope with

the effects of Climate Change

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

Kaiser Chiefs supports Oxjam


He estimated that in the past two years

concert and festival goers in the U.K. have

been defrauded to the tune of £15 million

($25 million) by fraudulent merchants selling

fake tickets.

Graham Burns

These shows, limited to just 150 audience members per night, run

from Monday 28 September to Thursday 1 October, The charity

shop gigs officially launch the Oxjam month of music. Oxjam is a

festival with a difference: thousands of fundraising music events

are put on by ordinary people – from large-scale festivals to local

sponsored busks – making it the biggest line-up of any music

festival in the UK. As a further pledge of support to the cause,

WeGotTickets will be implementing their donation module across

the site throughout October, allowing ticket buyers for any event

to make a donation to Oxjam.

Since 2006, more than 36,000 musicians have played to an audience

of over 750,000 people at almost 3,000 Oxjam events, raising

in excess of £1 million to fight poverty around the world. The

highlight of the month-long festival will be the Oxjam Takeover

on Sunday 25 October, when more than 2,000 musicians will fill

over 150 venues in more than 20 cities in a single day to raise funds

for Oxjam. This year the festival will be helping poor people cope

with the devastating effects of climate change. As well as raising

hundreds of thousands of pounds for Oxjam’s work, gig goers will

be painting their faces blue as part of a massive visual statement

to the UK government to take action on climate change before

it’s too late.


VIP- News - September 2009

2003 the 1st year of ETEP,

presented a total of 53 shows with

23 artists from 8 countries playing at

23 festivals in 13 countries.

2004 presented a total of 84 shows with 35 artists

from 13 countries playing at 36 festivals in

13 countries.

2005 brought us a total of 89 shows with 39 artists

from 14 countries playing at 41 festivals in

16 countries.

2006 brought us a total of 156 shows with 48 artists

from 12 countries playing at 50 festivals in

17 countries.

2007 brought us a total of 182 shows with 62 artists

from 18 countries playing at 55 festivals in

19 countries

2008 brought us a total of 187 shows with 64 artists

from 16 countries playing at 58 festivals in

18 countries

2009 brought us a total of 122 shows (and counting)

with 54 artists from 15 countries playing at

60 festivals in 19 countries.

Per may 2009 a total of 873 shows by 325 artists, excluding

the spin off shows at non ETEP festivals all over the world.










VIP- News - September 2009

EuroSonic Noorderslag 2009

Total number of visitors: 18.000

Nationalities present: 34

Professional participants: 2.650

Artists performing: 259

EBU Radio stations present: 22

International festivals present: 123

ETEP participant festivals: 59

Number of stages @ EuroSonic: 32

Number of stages @ Noorderslag: 9

Network Europe members: 38

Number of European journalists present: 140

Panels and meetings: 100










VIP- News - September 2009

VIP-Booking.com clients and the readers of VIP-News rep-

resent all levels of the European live music industry, and

we like to think that we cater for all. However, we are very

aware that the small and mid level operators need all the

help they can get in difficult times. After all these promoters,

agents, venues etc are hopefully the foundations for

we Got Tickets – Access to Anything!

Allan McGowan am@vip-booking.com

WeGotTickets are a UK ticketing agency

catering specifically for small to mediumsized

venues and promoters. Today they

work with over 3,000 venues and promoters

across the UK, operating on the maxim,

“Because we came from where you are, we

understand your needs.”

The developers of the WeGotTickets system

started off as venue managers, promoters

and artist managers, around about

the year 2000 it occurred to them that an

online ticketing outlet would be a great advantage

for the shows they were involved

in. The only problem was that none of the

existing ticketing concerns catered for

the their level of business. So they created

their own system, a paperless ticket system

based on reference numbers, then a new

and strange idea, now commonplace. We-

GotTickets was fully launched in 2002 when

they created an online box office for The

Zodiac (now O2 Academy) in Oxford.

Because they used the site to sell their

own tickets, they knew exactly what was

needed; the service was so popular and

worked so well that other venues and promoters

started using it, liked it, and recommended

it. WeGotTickets has continued to

develop the site based on feedback from

their ticket buying customers, promoters

and venues, aspiring to make it uniquely

user-friendly to both ticket buyers and sellers.

The company’s 10% maximum ticket

commission rate has helped to lower fees

across the business.

Facts & Figures

A couple of years ago when Feargal Sharkey,

now head of UK Music, was charged to


the future of our industry. Whenever possible we will report

on innovations or services that we think can help improve

business for this sector; WeGotTickets fit into this category.

At the moment they operate solely in the UK but are keen to

discuss the use of their systems with venues and promoters

throughout Europe.

set up the live music forum by the Government’s

Department of Culture, Media and

Sport (DCMS) to investigate just what was

going on with live music in the UK, findings

supposedly indicated that some 4000 public

live music performances, some of them

free, from busking on up, took place everyday.

This seemed to be very much a ‘guesstimate’,

I figured that WeGotTickets might be

able to come up with a more accurate estimation

of what was really going on in the

small to mid level world of UK live music.

»Essentially I think they show

that we serve a thriving sector of

the live entertainment industry

that sits way below the level of

the events serviced by the likes

of Ticketmaster and See tickets«

- Dave Newton

Dave Newton, co-founder of the system

and the company kindly provided the following

report, “Between the first of July ’08

and the 30th of June ’09, 50% of the events

we had on sale had a face-value of £7 or less,

50% of the tickets sold had a face-value of

£10 or less. We had a total of 22,500 Events

on sale across 1750 distinct venues/promoters

selling 500,000 tickets to 140,000 distinct

customers.” I asked Dave what he thought

these statistics indicated, he told me, “Essentially

I think they show that we serve a

thriving sector of the live entertainment

industry that sits way below the level of the

events serviced by the likes of Ticketmaster

and See tickets.”

Charity to Comedy

Whether or not this whole sector is growing,

WeGotTickets definitely are, as Dave

17 17

VIP- News - September 2009

Newton says, “Sitting still is just not an op-

tion anywhere within the Events Industry

these days!”. He continues, “We think of

a ticket as a way to gain access to almost

anything, and although we sell many tickets

to music and arts events we can sell tickets

to ALL events, performances, exhibitions,

school events, courses, gatherings, battle reenactments,

fan clubs, conferences, festivals

– music, food and ale, sport etc, etc.”

WeGotTickets are exclusively selling tickets

for this year’s Oxjam music festival (see

story in this issue) and have pledged to

donate 50% of their booking fee back to

the charity. Another venture with a charitable

element is a partnership with Making

Music, the UK’s largest umbrella arts

association representing the voluntary

music sector. The new site will showcase

and sell tickets for the events promoted

by Making Music’s 2,800 member groups,

whose number include choirs, orchestras,

music clubs, samba groups and represent

over 200,000 volunteer musicians and

music lovers. Making Music members

promote over 10,000 events each year.

WeGotTickets will make available their

unique donation module, also in use for

Oxjam, allowing ticket buyers to make an

extra contribution to selected causes at

the time of purchase, to help raise funds

for Making Music’s projects and have

pledged 20% of booking fees to help the

voluntary sector.

Last month saw the launch of WeGot-

Comedy.com, announced at the Edinburgh

Festival fringe, where WeGotTickets

worked with the Five Pound Fringe to sell

tickets for over forty different shows, this

is the UK’s first ticketing web site solely

dedicated to comedy events. The Company

now sell on average over 6,000 comedy

tickets a month, generating around 15% of

the company’s total revenue, despite representing

just 10% of events on sale. Dave

Newton comments, “The live comedy circuit

in the UK is bursting with hundreds of

innovative independent promoters, each

seeking to put on quality events at sensible

prices – the perfect fit for our online

box office services. We expect this area to

grow rapidly in the coming months as the

comedy circuit follows the music industry

in recognising the many benefits of selling

advance tickets.


A new set of developments to have recently

been unveiled aimed at improving

the functionality of the website. These

include enabling event organisers to add

their own promo codes to events, allowing

them greater control over pricing and in

creating special offers for consumers. Also

promoters can now add customer marketing

surveys to events, allowing them to

build up a clearer picture of who their audience

is and how and where they heard

about the show.

For promoters of larger events or those

with extra requirements, WeGotTickets

has added new portals specifically to cater

for their needs and allow greater continuity

between their own websites and


WeGotTickets. Events recently to have

taken advantage of this feature include

the Summer Sundae Weekender and Truck


Dave Newton concludes, “We’re really

proud to be raising the bar within the ticketing

sector once again. We’ve always invested

heavily in the IT capacity of our company

and this has enabled us both to implement

our own ideas for development and to react

to the suggestions we receive from our clients

- the venues and promoters.”

Future plans include the launch of a Clients

Forum, and possible expansion beyond

the UK, as Dave says, “I’d still like to

see all these developments benefit not just

the UK market but other territories in Europe

and beyond.”


VIP- News - August 2009

Business News

Manfred Tari mt@vip-booking.com

dow Jones & Co Helps live Nation


There is still no definite news indicating

that the merger between Live Nation and

Ticketmaster will receive approval from

cartel authorities in the US or Europe, nor is

there any significant business news indicating

that Live Nation will soon become an

extraordinary profit centre. But nevertheless

Live Nation and also the Ticketmaster

share price benefits from a general market

recovery, which is best demonstrated by

the recent performance of stock market

indices such as the Dow Jones, FTS 100 or


The only reports based on hard facts are

the sale of Live Nation properties in Boston,

The Boston Opera House, Orpheum Theatre

and Paradise were sold for $22.5 million

in cash and a 5 year long ‘earn out’ deal.

Michael Rapino

Michael Rapino, Chief Executive Officer of

Live Nation commented on the deal, saying,

“In our continuing focus on de-leveraging

our balance sheet, 50% of the closing

proceeds will be applied as a permanent

reduction in term loans, with the balance to

remain available for general working capital


Since August 17 the Live Nation share rose

from $5.83 up to $8.60.

Ticketmaster and the share price

recovery 2.0

Like the Live Nation share Ticketmaster

went up from $8.67 on August 17 to $12.14.

This more or less indicates some sort of

confidence in the market.

Occasionally this is also driven by research

reports and at least in terms of Ticketmaster

there is currently one by Thomas Weisel

Research that predicted a price target of

$12 at the beginning of September. The

analyst argues, “The reason for the upgrade

is that as the Department of Justice decision

on its pending merger with Live Nation

nears, we believe that the company’s competitive

position has improved.”

However this optimism is to be interpreted,

and whether the merger will be approved

or not, Ticketmaster seems at least eager

to undertake some action against ticket

scalping. In news reports it says that Ticketmaster

now asks for an ID- and a credit

card when ticket holders show up on the


To facilitate this Ticketmaster have developed

a new exchange system, or more correctly,

just another resale platform which

was launched earlier on this month.

deutsche entertainment downsizes

its company board

Ingo Stein, the former CFO (Chief Financial

Officer) left DEAG earlier on in September.

Christian Dieckmann, the COO (Chief Operating

Officer) will also take over Stein’s


Since DEAG halved its amounts on outstanding

shares in August, the share price

since August went down from 2.40 to 1.97


CTS eventim – The Performance

Surge continues

No big news flows to report in the last couple

of weeks. Nevertheless the share price

rises. On September 14 the share peaked at

a high of 33.99 Euro but since then came

down to 30.96 Euro.

Mama Group – Staying level

Amazingly since July 30 this share has move

neither up nor down. There had been some

trades reported but nevertheless those had

no impact on the share price curve. Only in

very recent days has the share price gone

down from 4.75 to 4.5 Pence.



VIP- News - August 2009

notiCe board ››

Another new service in the improved and redesigned VIP-News is

the Notice-board, which is available for all readers. Reader’s messages

will be posted on the Notice-board as a free service, passing

on announcements, job postings, buying and selling notices, inquiries

or alike. Announcements should be emailed to noticeboard@


Jeffrey Osborne

- Touring europe

We are seeking dates in Europe for early 2010.

Please contact Carlos Keyes for available dates.

Email: carloskeyes@redentertainment.com

Tel: +1-212-563-7575

Fax: +1-212-563-9393

See website for roster:


Jeffrey Osborne

VIP-Booking ApS cannot be held responsible for loss or damages

incurred as a result of transactions with individuals or companies

through the notice board. We recommend all to make the necessary

enquiries before entering into any agreements.

VIP-Booking ApS may not, for reason of space, be able to post all

announcements received. Announcements should be emailed to

noticeboard@vip-booking.com, including name and email address.

Please shorten your message to the extent possible, to make room for

as many notices as possible.

Red Entertainment Agency is proud

to announce representation of JEF-


Jeffrey Osborne is one of the great

R&B soul vocalist of our time.

Known worldwide for their hits:

“On The Wings of Love”

“Stay With Me Tonight”

“You Should Be Mine (The Woo Woo


“Don’t You Get So Mad”

“Love Power”

“Don’t Stop”

“She’s On The Left”


artist avails ››

Admiral T

Territory: Worldwide

Period: 2010 - 2011

Agency: CARAMBA Spectacles

Agent: Clotaire

Phone: +33 1 4218 1718

E-mail: caramba@clotaire.fr

Homepage: www.caramba.fr

dionne warwick & Group

Territory: Tours Europe

Period: Late November 2009

Agency: Diamond Artistes

Agent: Denis Vaughan

Phone: +44 (0) 207 486 5353

E-mail: dvaughanmusic@dial.pipex.com

emma lanford

Territory: Worldwide

Period: All Year

Agency: Peppermint Jam Booking

Agent: Alpay Taskin

Phone: +49 511 768 6023

E-mail: alpay@peppermint-jam.com

Homepage: www.peppermint-jam.com


Territory: Worldwide

Period: On Going

Agency: Mission Control Artists Agency

Agent: Craig D’Souza

Phone: +44 (0) 207 252 3001

E-mail: craig@missioncontrol.net

Homepage: www.missioncontrol.net

Briganti di Terra d’Otranto

Territory: Worldwide

Period: Generally Available

Agency: Maffucci Music

Agent: Canio Rosario Maffucci

Phone: +39 339 485 8107

E-mail: info@italianworldmusic.com

Homepage: www.italianworldmusic.com


Territory: Worldwide

Period: Generally Available

Agency: ABS Agency

Agent: Nigel Kerr

Phone: +44 208 399 3474

E-mail: absagency@btconnect.com

Homepage: www.thesweet-now.com






VIP- News - September 2009

MeMber presentation ››

In this section we offer members of VIP-booking.com some space to present their company to VIP-News readers.

If you would also like to present your company please contact Peter briggs at pb@vip-booking.com

The Flaming Arts

THE FlAMING ARTS is leading rock/metal agency working on tours and gigs in such countries like Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Baltic States

and etc during 5 years and has good team including people from marketing researches, pr agents, book-keepers, drivers, hotels booking

company and etc.

We have serious contracts with many leading music media in Russia like major magazines (not musical only), biggest music channels,

who translate videos of our artists and make massive announcements of our shows, radio-companies.

We are working with different clubs in many cities and towns of Eastern Europe and after marketing researches made by our managers

we propose the best club options for bands we work with.

2008 is going to become new era for our company, because of new activities will be developed: 1. Tours and gigs in Eastern Europe for

non rock/metal artists. 2. Booking of our international rock/metal artists worldwide 3. Music management service and new releases

promotion for artists in Eastern Europe.

We are very serious with our music business and ready to negotiate all conditions with you and pay attention for all your wishes in every

single case.

About Our Company

VIP-Booking’s core product is the Internet’s oldest and largest database

for the European Live Entertainment Industry www.vip-booking.com

developed as a tool for industry professionals. Since it’s

launch in the year 2000, we have consistently offered our subscribers

the very best in database services and now boast subscribers in

over 30 countries.



VIP-BOOKING.COM | 26 York Street | UK - London W1U 6pZ | Phone +44 870 755 0092 | Fax +44 870 622 1953 | e-mail: vip@vip-booking.com


Today VIP-Booking offers a range of tools for the industry – including

VIP-News, VIP-Booking, VIP-Book and VIP-Contract.

Please visit vip-booking.com for further information.

Your comments and suggestions are always appreciated.


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