Lesley Olenik, VP Touring, U.S. Concerts, Live Nation Entertainment

Lesley Olenik with her family
– Lesley Olenik with her family
The Greatest Show: Danny Galindo, Justin Galindo, Lesley Olenik and John Olenik at the Echoplex on April 27, 2013 for a Rolling Stones underplay celebrating the band’s 50th anniversary.

My Life & Work Tentpole Moment

Lesley Olenik
VP Touring, U.S. Concerts, Live Nation Entertainment  

Lesley Olenik has built a stellar reputation in this business with hard work, integrity and strong negotiation skills while nurturing relationships with artists and their teams in ways few others do. This includes such above-and-beyond-the-job-description actions such as bringing rescue animals (and a tarantula) to Billie Eilish on tour, creating museum days for Childish Gambino’s family, and other creative concepts for her stellar list of clients that also includes Lizzo, Anderson .Paak, Janelle Monáe and, most recently, the incomparable Ashley McBryde.

Working her way up the promoter ladder from Nederlander, Goldenvoice/AEG to now Live Nation, Olenik says much of the secret sauce to her success is “building strong relationships and really getting to know agents, managers and artists on a personal level and connecting with them.” This personal approach, it turns out, may be embedded in her DNA.

Lesley Olenik and her father
– Lesley Olenik and her father John Olenik.

“I think I get this from my dad,” she says. “He’s in the wine business in Oregon and is friends with all the wine makers and people in the industry because he has taken the time and effort to build real, lasting relationships. He was in sales my whole life and watching his nurturing personality really influenced me to this day. He invested his time and energy into having his clients over for dinner, entertaining them and always taking care of them to the point where his clients actually became his friends. I see myself in that same way. The agents and the managers that I work with have become part of our lives and we’re connected to them. It’s interesting to see those parallels with my dad and myself.” Perhaps the apotheosis of this accomplished exec’s business philosophy came together in what could be perhaps the greatest tent-pole moment ever.

“When I was at AEG and Goldenvoice, they were the tour promoters for the Rolling Stones after Michael Cohl had parted ways,” Olenik recalls. “As a kickoff to their world tour, they were looking for a venue to do an underplay for the Stones, and came to me for local input. I gave them some ideas and we ended up doing the show at The Echoplex, downstairs and I helped them put the whole thing together. While all of this was being planned, I was trying to figure out a way for my dad to meet my fiancée’s dad.

“The morning of the show, I called my dad and said, ‘Come up to L.A. I cannot tell you what it’s for. Bring your friend Dean and you’re going to meet Justin’s dad.’ As soon as my dad arrived, I told him he was going to the Stones show and he turned white as a ghost because he just couldn’t believe it. Later that night I remember him and Danny, my now father-in-law, standing next to me. They’re both big rock guys. And Gwen Stefani, Skrillex – he was my guest – and Johnny Depp watching the Stones with us in this tiny little club in L.A.

“It was really, really special and in that moment, I realized music and family would always be tightly connected for me – and I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

(Photo above: Danny Galindo, Justin Galindo, Lesley Olenik and John Olenik at the Echoplex on April 27, 2013 for a Rolling Stones underplay celebrating the band’s 50th anniversary.)