Voices From The Trenches: Craig Bruck

Pollstar’s periodic column providing snapshots of players in the industry.

Bruck, agent at ICM Partners, has a roster that includes Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox AjR, Before You Exit, his most recent signing Melanie Martinez and next week’s HotStar, R5. Bruck’s career includes Evolution Talent where he helped book Backstreet Boys, *Nsync and Britney Spears, and his own agency, Bruck Talent, that helped develop the Jonas Brothers. We told him this was a brief feature and he took us seriously.

So what got you into this kooky business of show?

I grew up playing in bands ever since I was in junior high school. In high school, I formed a band called Tiajuana Caravan and we made a go at it during college. I took a year off from college and we toured the U.S. for the entire year.

After that year, I realized I better get back to school and get my college degree just in case we didn’t become the next Rolling Stones. In college, I interned at Atlantic Records and Concerts/Southern Promotions (now Live Nation) in Atlanta. In the spring of 1997 I was looking to move back to NYC from Atlanta and I met David Zedeck who hired me and gave me my first job as a booking agent. I had an amazing experience working for David. 

What would you change about the business in general?

I wouldn’t change much. I would just emphasize the importance of live music and the live experience and do everything in my power to try and make sure the younger generations continue to go out and see a lot of live music. I don’t think there is much that compares to seeing an amazing live show.

You have three shout-outs. Go.

David Zedeck, Jon Stoll, Randy Phillips 

What would be the one thing people would be surprised to learn about you?

That my band The Bodega Tallboys has opened up (side stage, but I’ll take it) for Jimmy Buffett, Bob Dylan, Wilco, Beck and Ringo Starr over the last few years. I play guitar in it.

How many miles traveled so far, 2015?

About 35k.

Any favorite concert experience, as a fan, good or bad? 

Grateful Dead July 9th, 1998 Giants Stadium! First of many Grateful Dead shows.  

* Note: “Tiajuana” has been attributed to kids who didn’t have the benefit of spell-check.