X-Why-Z Has Something To Bilde On

The breakaway company formed by Hamburg promoters Christian Bilde, Sasha Verdillo and Thomas Koester is up and running in the Germany city’s Neuer Kamp and already has 15 tours on sale.

Apparently it’s called X-Why-Z because the directors couldn’t think up anything suitable or – more importantly – internationally available.

“We actually had some other names picked out, but these were either already registered names or taken by other companies outside of Germany. As we continued to run into this problem, we started to joke about just calling our company 1,2,3 or A,B,C. We ended up using X-Why-Z. Why? Just because,” Verdillo told Pollstar, revealing just how inventive a thoroughly democratic triumvirate can be.

The company began with a series of similar occasional discussions, usually over a meal or a beer, until Bilde and Verdillo (FKP Scorpio) and Koester (Karsten Jahnke Konzertdirektion) realized they all had a hankering to start out on their own.

In an “amicable split” that doesn’t appear to be a euphemism for a stand-up fight, all three worked with former employers Folkert Koopmans and Karsten Jahnke to find the smoothest ways to part and move across Hamburg to set up on their own.

Six of those 15 upcoming tours are done in cahoots with either Koopmans or Jahnke and, on some of the others, either company is at least promoting the local Hamburg show.

The obvious difference is that X-Why-Z will now be handling the national schedules for the likes of Coldplay, Eminem, Kaiser Chiefs, Faithless, Snow Patrol, Arctic Monkeys, Incubus, Dirty Pretty Things, The Datsuns, Hoobastank, and The Veils.

The next national co-operations with either FKP or Jahnke include Rise Against, Paolo Nutini, Satyricon, Zox, AFI, and “Taste of Chaos.”

Having avoided the sort of animosity that accompanied Joe Rambok and Thorsten Schauf’s departures from FKP 18 months ago, which saw both switch to Marek Leiberberg (also co-owned by CTS Eventim), Bilde – who’s been with Koopmans eight years – and Verdillo look to have made a move that shouldn’t trouble the London-based agents with any hard choices.

Verdillo said the company’s aim is to promote tours in Germany where everybody involved is “happy with our work and has a good time.”

“And, of course, to make some money while having fun,” she added.

X-Why-Z Konzertagentur GmbH & Co. is at Neuer Kamp 32, 20357 Hamburg. Telephone: + 49 40 432 08440. E-mail: [email protected].

– John Gammon