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Steve Martin and Andy Somers launch Paladin Artists

Another new independent agency, Paladin Artists, has made its debut after former APA staffers Steve Martin and Andy Somers gathered a team of nine other agents to launch offices in Los Angeles, New York City and London.

Paladin has also created a strategic partnership with Wayne Forte of Entourage Talent Associates and Karrie Goldberg of The Kagency in a deal they say will re-envision the agency business, looking at artist and brand representation, touring and live events, literary representation, theatre production, touring exhibitions and estate management.

In addition to the principals, the Paladin Artists team will include agents Magaly Barone, Kath Buckell, Chyna Chuan-Farrell, Christian Ellett, Steve Ferguson, Seth Rappaport, Sara Schilevert and Zach Silva.

According to Celebrity Access, the turmoil caused by the Covid pandemic allowed Paladin’s founders time to assess the overall industry landscape and devise a more evolutionary approach to the agency side of the business.

Somers says, “Paladin, Entourage and The Kagency share similar visions and will each benefit by the sharing of information, experiences, and common goals; exploring new means of improving the future of artist and brand representation while remaining independent at a controllable scale of operation.”

“The industry is rapidly evolving and will continue to do so in the post-pandemic world”

Martin adds, “The world has been through hell for the last 18 months with many places and people still struggling. I’m simply grateful to work with people I like and artists that I respect, enjoy and have fruitful relationships with. Many were able to take a step back during the shutdown and evaluate what is important, be it personal or business. The industry is rapidly evolving and will continue to do so in the post-pandemic world.”

Both veterans of the independent scene, Martin and Somers have worked together for decades as their careers saw them both instrumental in the growth of Neil Warnock’s The Agency Group.

For his part, ILMC stalwart Wayne Forte says, “This pandemic has highlighted how short life truly is. So, why not work with people and clients one genuinely likes and with whom one shares similar visions and philosophies. The establishment and building of yet another successful business is a bonus! After all, success is not simply a destination, it’s a constant journey.”

The Kagency, founded by Karrie Goldberg in 2004, built one of the first venue representation businesses in North America focused solely on handling the corporate/private event, film and photo bookings for their clients. The company portfolio currently includes more than 500 traditional and non-traditional venues in the US and UK, while its talent roster includes artists and brands such as Nike, Givenchy, Duran Duran, Beyonce, Cartier, Under Armour, Maserati and Vogue.

 


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Indie agencies join forces for advocacy group

A group of 14 independent talent agencies in the US has formed the National Independent Talent Organization (Nito), a non-profit advocacy group aiming to help small businesses through the Covid-19 crisis.

The founding companies, which include Entourage Talent, Ground Control Touring, New Frontier Touring and Skyline Artists Agency, together represent more than 2,000 artists and look to “promot[e] the welfare and prosperity of its members and their represented artists”, as well as working to protect the live music community as a whole.

The group has invited other small business within the US live music ecosystem, as well as majority owner-operated independent management companies, artists, crew and other live touring entities, to join them as associate members.

As of press time, Nito’s total membership stands at over 50 members and growing.

“We are speaking out collectively for ourselves and all those that we individually work to generate income for,” comments Wayne Forte, owner of Entourage Talent. “[That’s] not simply the musical artists we represent, but the thousands and thousands of people who rely on our industry and our work for their living.

“We are speaking out collectively for ourselves and all those that we individually work to generate income for”

“We have to continue to do this while inadvertently helping to frame and preserve the soundtrack of millions and millions of lives.”

While Nito states it is “still unknown” when live music as we know it will return, the group “will fight to keep this community alive until it’s safe again to gather with friends and other fans to share these experiences that are some of the best moments of our lives.”

The group follows the formation of the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) in the US earlier this year.

A full list of Nito founding members can be found below:

Entourage Talent / Wayne Forte
Ground Control Touring / Eric Dimenstein
High Road Touring / Frank Riley
Leave Home Booking / Stormy Shepherd
Madison House / Nadia Prescher
Mongrel Music / Brad Madison
New Frontier Touring / Paul Lohr
Panache Booking / Michelle Cable
Partisan Arts / Tom Chauncey, Hank Sacks
Pinnacle Entertainment / Scott Sokol
Sound Talent Group / Dave Shapiro
Skyline Artists Agency / Mark Lourie, Bruce Houghton
TKO / Steve Schenck
The Kurland Agency / Ted Kurland, Jack Randall

 


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