Wayne Sharp, Senior Vice President and head of Touring at Career Artist Management, shared the following tribute with Pollstar about Jordan Feldstein, who died unexpectedly Dec. 22.
Feldstein, 40, was the founder and chief executive of Career Artist Management and had managed Maroon 5 since its inception 15 years ago. His company also counts Miguel, Iggy Azalea, Big Boi, The B-52s, Elle King and Rick Springfield among its clients. Career Artist Management joined Irving Azoff’s Front Line Management in 2008, and is now aligned with Roc Nation, a division of Live Nation.
I have been unreasonably lucky in my 37 years in the music industry, having worked for and with some incredibly smart people. I know a genius when I work with one, and Jordan was a genius. That phrase “a mind like a steel trap” was coined for him; he never took notes in meetings because he didn’t need to. His office didn’t have a desk or a computer. Touring business for our clients (with very complicated revenue streams and expenses in the many millions of dollars) was discussed every day between us and he would remember every important figure with Rain Man precision.
Jordan always thought big, fought aggressively, and played the long game. He was a tenacious dealmaker. As rigid as he was in his belief in his clients, he would always creatively find a way to make an opportunity work even when it seemed like a dead end. Anyone who ever dealt with him more than once would learn he was a guy you wanted to do business with. (I write “more than once” because I’m sure there are plenty of one-timers reading this who may think he was gruff and impatient – Jordan didn’t like wasting time with small talk and quickly passed on deals he did not see any value in). However, in personal matters, he was very generous with his time and money; he had a big heart and a soft side that he rarely made public. He was, in fact, also unfailingly polite and he always returned a phone call. Always.
Jordan believed in his instincts and would not blink when he had to make tough and potentially risky decisions. He led by example and gave his people the latitude to do the same. Great managers do that. Surround yourself with good and trustworthy people and let them do their jobs. Maroon 5’s first appearance at Rock In Rio on October 1, 2011 happened when Jay-Z dropped out four weeks before the festival and Chris Dalston (our agent for South America) called me to say that Paulo Fellin [Talent VP at Rock In Rio] and Phil Rodriguez [CEO of Move Concerts] made offers to Usher, Alicia Keys and Maroon 5 and that the first artist to confirm would get the slot. I immediately told Chris to call back and confirm the offer. Jordan was on a flight and by the time I reached him we were confirmed and he was thrilled. That performance at Rock In Rio in 2011 broke the band in all of South and Latin America and they have been selling out stadiums throughout the region since.
Jordan is going to be sorely missed by all of his clients and the entire staff of professionals he and Adam Harrison have assembled at CAM over the past 15 years. With much respect, we all plan to honor his legacy by continuing his work doing our best to manage our clients by his example. He taught us that building careers for your artists is the reason we in the management field exist. Jordan Feldstein was one-of-a-kind and we are all better for having had the privilege and honor to have known and work with him.
He will be missed. Rest in peace, Jordan.