By Jayme Eng / Photography by Craig Stocks
For Jay Goldberg, it’s not only about the band, the crowd, or the show that makes his business, Jay Goldberg Events and Entertainment so worthwhile. To him, he’s got a keen interest in the backstage, what goes on behind the scenes to make the now widely popular concerts keep going.
Jay Goldberg got into music during college. After he graduated, he opened a record store in Peoria. He built the record store into a chain of 38 stores throughout the Midwest before selling it in order to pursue a career with promoting concerts. “I realized that a great draw for the records stores would be if they were ticket outlets.” According to Jay, there weren’t a lot of concerts in the early 1970’s. “In order for me to do the ticket sales I decided to also get into promoting concerts.”
From there, with the retail record store and concert promoting, Jay created Jay Goldberg Events and Entertainment. As time went on, Jay and his business expanded from promoting concerts in Peoria to all over Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Missouri and beyond. By the end of 1981, Jay had sold his record stores and focused solely on promoting concerts, festivals, and special events.
“We do a number of things,” says Jay when asked what his business entails. “We formed a company called IndiGOLD Artist Management in 2008, which manages a singer/songwriter.” Not only is Jay in artist management, but also has an event and security company that provides “services for other events for their security and emergency service needs.”
Jay likes to refer to one of his business specialties as “primitive festival location productions,” which promotes large scale festivals around Peoria. “We do things such as the Summer Music Festival in Chillicothe, Illinois and Gentlemen of the Road Stopover Festival with Mumford & Sons in Troy, Ohio and Guthrie, Oklahoma, but we also do all types of events.” These events include an international beer tasting festival, a motorcycle rally weekend, a blues festival called Budweiser Illinois Blues Festival and even promoted Broadway shows.
With promoting so many different types of events, it’s no surprise that Jay and his business remain fairly busy. Jay and his team are always searching for new events but people also approach him. “We receive a lot of inquiries about events,” and being in the business for quite a while has let Jay create a large network. “If we hear about a band or artist going on tour we’ll usually be contacted to see if we’re available in our locations.”
Jay also gets involved with developing artists, promoting small events such as nightclubs to large venues. “We own the Canopy Club in Champaign, Illinois and we can showcase a lot of up and coming artists and help them as they gain more attention.” Jay is also not restricted to only American artists. “We’re very international.” Jay and his business are currently promoting events in Buenos Aires, Argentina, though he says his “largest footprint” is in the United States.
Promoting artists can also be tricky, according to Jay. “The most difficult thing for me is gauging whether or not tickets will sell.” And emerging artists can be especially difficult. Larger bands are much easier to sell out tickets. “You know the Rolling Stones are going to sell.” With emerging artists, questions such as ‘will it sell?’ or ‘is there a market for it?’ are inquiries Jay and his business must evaluate before investing in certain artists. “It’s hard to target your market, especially now as so many stations are out there with satellite radio.”
To get a good idea of marketing, Jay works very closely with radio and television stations. “We work a lot with radio stations for promotional purposes of artists.” Locally, Jay says that the music radio scene is staying close to classical rock but one radio station is “much more aggressive in playing independent music and unknown artists and we’re really excited about that.”
For more information about up and coming events sponsored by Jay Goldberg, visit his website at http://jaytv.com/. For more information about IndieGOLD Artist Management, email Jay at firstname.lastname@example.org or Ian Goldberg at email@example.com.