When Jason got booted by Lyor, I asked Roger Ames whether Flom was done.
Ames said no, that the ability to spot and sign talent was rare, and once you developed it, you never lost it.
Which is why Jason went on to sign Katy Perry at Capitol and Lorde and Greta Van Fleet at the reactivated Lava.
Jason not only signs talent, he markets it. Kid Rock was dead in the water until he took Lewis Largent out on the golf course and got him to listen to “Devil Without A Cause.” Then MTV added it, and the album went diamond. That’s ten million in sales, for those not conscious before the turn of the century.
Not that everything Jason has signed has broken, but his batting average is stratospheric, he’s a Hall of Fame hitter by music industry standards. There was Matchbox Twenty, the Corrs, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Tori Amos, Simple Plan, even Thirty Seconds To Mars, whom everybody else wanted to drop, but when Jason met with Jared and found out he was turning down acting gigs to break his band, he invested in him.
Now Jason’s father was a legendary New York attorney. But his dad came from nothing, and ended up giving money over and over again to Harvard, because its law school gave him a chance. This philanthropic gene was inherited by Jason, he puts his money and his time where his mouth is, most notably with the Innocence Project, which specializes in getting the wrongly accused out of jail. Listen to his podcast,
“Wrongful Conviction,” for further details
Now unlike so many of the fat cats, Jason doesn’t lie. He’s never told me an untruth, that’s not who he is.
And he also admits what he doesn’t know. Which is stunning. You’ll bring something up and he’ll say he knows nothing about it and he’ll ask you to explain it.
I really don’t know any other music exec like Jason. Sure, he’s an imperfect human being, but we all are.
But he knows how to close, he knows how to strategize, he knows how to break.
This his story from the beginning until now. From playing in a band in high school, from taking a break from college to try and make it, from putting up posters in record stores to ultimately signing hit acts.
You’ll learn something.
Listen to The Bob Lefsetz Podcast on: