Saturday, October 10, 2020

Brent Smith Out At WME Following Complaints of ‘Bullying Behavior’ | Pollstar News

Brent Smith(WME) Brent Smith

Brent Smith, a senior agent at WME, whose impressive roster has included Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Snoop Dogg, Frank Ocean, Tyler the Creator, Wiz Khalifa and John Legend among others, is no longer working for the agency.

WME released a terse statement late Friday (Sept. 9) saying only that, “Following an investigation based on complaints of bullying behavior by Brent Smith, WME and Brent have mutually decided to part ways.”

The news comes after reports surfaced two weeks earlier claiming Smith had been suspended, WME at the time declined comment on the matter.

William Morris Endeavor’s music division, like other music agencies over the last several months, has undergone enormous changes with WME music head Marc Geiger departing the company in late-June and a triumvirate of senior agents, Scott Clayton in Nashville, Lucy Dickins in London and Kirk Sommers in Los Angeles, ascending to run the department. Other top music department execs leaving or reassigned include Sarah Newkirk Simon, Samantha Kirby Yoh (who now co-heads UTA’s music department) and Michele Bernstein. 

Though seemingly not related to the pandemic, Smith's departure was only the latest major personnel shift this year to impact the agency business, which, like much of the live industry, has been under extraordinary duress with layoffs, furloughs, salary reductions and other cost-saving measures.  While it is stiull unclear when the live industry business will return with revenues trickling in with livestreaming, drive-ins. shows and sporting events at diminished capacities, it is certain the business won't look the same when it does return.


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