Martin Hopewell, booking agent / Primary Talent International

Ian was a unique, vibrant and colourful person. He was also an excellent agent with whom I had the pleasure of working with at JSE and Nems before he moved to America. I have to admit that I was secretly glad to see him go as he constantly beat me at backgammon, which lost me a lot of money. We continued to work together over the years through our close association with Sting. Above all else, Ian made a lot of people laugh and he will be sorely missed.

Phil Banfield, booking agent / CODA

Ian was the first person to help me in America, the first person I knew to have a water bed, and a good guy. Tragic.

John Giddings, booking agent / Solo Agency

Ian Copeland was truly one of the good guys in this business and in life. In business, he was an innovator, helped many of us get our start and was always there to help. As a friend, he was a joy to be with and always watched your back. A better friend a man cannot have. It was a gift and an honor to have had Ian Copeland as a friend.

Phil Rodriguez, promoter / Water Brother Productions

Ian had a great ability to deal with one and all with respect and at the same time with a grin, and make every moment lighthearted. Ian was a special, one-of-a-kind guy whom I had the pleasure of knowing, and being a friend of and doing business with, for decades. He will be missed. We all have lost one of the special guys in our business and a great friend to all who knew him.

Jon Stoll, promoter / Fantasma Productions

My business would never have become what it did had Ian not been the maverick he was. His passion for life, music, love, were always worn boldly in his eyes and his laughter. He found kindred souls who became brothers in arms – Buck, Huie, Rick, Danny, John, Steve, Brent – dedicated to turning the world on to this amazing era of music. A lot of us owe Ian a huge debt, as well as the other FBI’s from the early ’80s. I’ll miss shooting the breeze at his desk long after work hours.

Bill Silva, promoter / Bill Silva Presents

He was the friendliest, most gregarious, smiling, loved-everybody kind of guy that you would ever meet. I met Ian 30 years ago and said, “You should come work for me. I want you to sign some bands. You find the bands I don’t know about.” I think the big agencies were telling him, “We’ll train you by letting you book Montana, but don’t think about signing anybody.” Of course, our view was completely different. I threw him in the deep water and he swam like a fish. Ian accomplished a lot of the things in life he wanted to accomplish. He was never one to complain. He had such a bright outlook about life; he was an inspiring person. I never took him up on that airplane ride – he became a pilot and had a plane for a while. He really enjoyed it. But that’s one thing we didn’t do together.

Alex Hodges, promoter / House of Blues Concerts

I first met Ian circa 1971 when he joined a small agency in London where I was learning the game, right after his stint in Vietnam. He was the best of my “trainees.” Together we had the most fun time. Every day was dedicated to having the maximum number of laughs we could manage even though we weren’t making any money! Eventually, after an enormous struggle on my part, Ian became a fine agent and he never lost that sense of humour. Just a great bloke. I loved him. And he had the best pot.

Ed Bicknell, former Dire Straits manager

Ian was the greatest influence in my adolescent entertainment business life. He had this enormous passion, great heart and spontaneity. With that I would love to quote the great author Douglas Adams, of something that reminds me of Ian: “Flying is learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”

Vince Bannon, Getty Images