David Zedeck’s run as global head of UTA Music and partner and special advisor to the board of directors includes last year’s acquisition and integration of Circle Talent Agency, which gave the talent agency a strong EDM presence while bolstering a client roster that includes big earners such as Guns N’ Roses and Post Malone.
“One of the reasons we wanted to get into EDM is that it’s global,” he says. “What was once considered a niche is now mainstream. And when a multi-genre festival has an electronic artist as a headliner, obviously there’s a [subsequent] increase in the business globally.”
The former president of global talent and artist development at Live Nation and CAA agent has long had an ear for pop acts. Two and half decades ago, when rock dominated the concert business, Zedeck saw opportunities in two largely ignored areas: pop music and the international marketplace. His department recently launched Why Don’t We, adding the boy band to the impressive list of pop upstarts brought up by Zedeck that includes Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake and Ariana Grande.
“Globally, pop acts have had longer careers than people would have thought years ago,” Zedeck says. “Pop artists continue to grow their audiences and the [initial] audience doesn’t drop them.”
Streaming, which he considers “a great equalizer,” has been a significant blessing for pop artists as well. Explains Zedeck: “It opens up markets where they might have not been before and it allows you to be No. 1 around the world on the same day.”
The show that changed your life?
I don’t think of a show, I just think that working [on concerts in college] got me to understand that there could be a career. I’d say the shows I worked on in college changed my life because without that, I would have probably gone on to medical school or something else in the health field.”
Your favorite laminate?
In 1986, when my boss represented Kool and the Gang, I got my first all access pass when I covered their show.
Technology that has most impacted your daily work or personal life?
Digital technology like the Internet, social media and streaming has made everything easier, more global and much quicker.
Artist to watch?
Brianna Mazzola, who I’m also personally excited about, is a R&B/pop singer who’s managed by Brandon Riester of Hitco. I’d also look out for Evie Irie.