The 20 most coveted Colorado music-industry jobs: The complete list with five new profiles
Talent Buyer (Ben Baruch, Fox Theatre/Boulder Theater)
Ben Baruch, who grew up on gospel, and started playing the drums at seven, can't remember a time he wasn't involved in music. "I still remember when I saw four guys singing in harmony when I was ten and told my dad I wanted to 'manage' them," he relates. "I literally had them come to my house and sing while my dad and I sat on the couch and watched them. I obviously didn't have a clue what 'managing' meant, but for as long as I can remember, I wanted to be involved in music."
Ben Baruch with the lovely Loretta.
These days, Baruch books talent for the Fox Theatre and Boulder Theater, and manages numerous clients, including Big Gigantic, which recently confirmed slots at Red Rocks and Bonnaroo in the same week. As expected, no day for Baruch is ever really "normal." It typically starts with an early morning walk with the dogs, followed by answering emails and plotting out his booking strategy.
Booking requires starting with Thursday through Saturday dates and working backwards from there. The process begins with researching who will be touring in the area, deciding what bands he wants to book and then reaching out to agents and managers. When availability is confirmed, Baruch sends offers and tries to confirm three calendar months in advance. But that's just the tip of the iceburg for him.
"Being that I manage musicians, a film and TV writer and an actor -- all on different time zones -- in addition to booking theaters, my day can go in any direction at any point," he notes. "No day is ever predictable. People always ask if I'll have a busy day tomorrow, and the answer truly is, I'll never know; it changes second to second and lasts way beyond a twelve-hour work day."
The natural drive he feels for the industry keeps Baruch passionate about what he does. "When you love something, you feel it," he observes. "I wake up every morning -- no one ever believes me, but I swear, every morning -- and I can't wait to do work. Healthy? Not a chance, but it is what it is. Whether it be to book shows, read one of my client's scripts, listen to a client's new song or take a 5 a.m. flight to a concert, I love every second of it." -- Sam Alviani
Band Management (Brian Schwartz, Red Light Management)
One of the best moments of Brian Schwartz's career was having breakfast with Jerry Weintraub at his house. Before that opportunity ever presented itself, however, Schwartz had come a long way in order to find his place in the industry.
"I was on the road doing tour accounting work for Ozzy Osbourne in 1998," Schwartz recalls, "and an amazing music industry veteran named Jane Holman told me, 'Don't get stuck on the road for more than ten years, or you'll be stuck on the road forever.'
Once he heard that, Schwartz started thinking about the next step. "I realized that Ozzy's manager and wife Sharon Osbourne was the woman calling all the shots," he remembers, "and I immediately started watching and learning from Sharon and other powerful managers, with the intent that I would work towards becoming a manager."
Schwartz' first client was Marie Beer, a musician out of Boulder, and he also worked with Rose Hill Drive. These days, he works with John Denver's Estate and represents artists like Lucero, Dinosaur Jr., J Mascis, Milow, Bestfriends and Baywood at Red Light Management. -- Sam Alviani