Dre London, Founder and CEO, London Entertainment / AUX Live

Dre London
– Dre London

On Not Just ‘Collecting Checks’

Dre London
Founder and CEO, London Entertainment / AUX Live  

Like the music industry’s most successful figures, Dre London – who shepherded Post Malone from SoundCloud sensation to arena headliner in less than five years – used the pandemic to innovate.

“The positive takeaway from this past year has definitely been being innovative, and this year has shown us who’s actually innovative and who’s just cruising along collecting their checks,” he says. “We’ve all faced adversity this year, and I truly believe that adversity breeds innovation.”

In London’s case, that translated to launching AUX Live, a platform featuring exclusive new livestreaming performances and archival concert films and documentaries encompassing hip-hop, country, rock and more.

“With the creation of AUX Live, we’ve created a lifeline for artists to create another income stream if they’re not able to tour or return to 100% capacities in venues,” he says.

London predicts the livestreaming space will remain robust even as physical concerts return, and says AUX Live is currently inking deals to broadcast festivals as they come back online.

Some of those fests may be topped by London’s marquee management client, who is already set to headline New York’s Governors Ball in late September.

While Malone made the most of the pandemic, including with an all-Nirvana April 2020 livestream that featured blink-182 drummer Travis Barker and raised more than $500,000 for coronavirus relief efforts, he and London are already looking ahead to Malone’s return to the road. Malone grossed an average of $1.76 million per show across 21 arena gigs logged in early 2020 – and that was before he picked up Grammy nominations for Album, Record and Song of the Year.

In a March interview with Pollstar, London teased that Malone might play stadiums in 2022, and he thinks that if venues return at partial capacity, “we might see a huge influx of sponsorships coming into play to offset the production costs” of tours.

“The biggest accomplishment in my career definitely has to be Posty selling out Madison Square Garden and Barclays in NYC, as well as O2 Arena – which I’ve always dreamt of selling out since I was young – in my hometown of London in front of my family,” London says, reflecting on Malone’s meteoric rise. “But those NYC shows were special because when I first came to America many years ago, NYC is where I called home prior to moving to L.A.  So it was definitely a ‘this has paid off’ moment for me.”

Not that London spends too much time looking in the rearview mirror.

“Just wait to hear all this amazing music we’ve been working on during the pandemic, and expect a few surprises,” he says, hinting at new music from Malone.

Expect plenty of activity from the rest of London’s roster, which includes Tyga and rising talent like Tyla Yaweh and Sossee, the latter of which has a voice described as “angelic” and “arena-ready.”

Hot Takes

The business philosophy you live by?

Never settle for no, no is the most powerful word in the dictionary.  If someone tells me no it can’t be done, I’ll find someone who can get it done.

The artist you would most like to see live when touring and festivals return?

Post and Tyga, as they have a great arsenal of music that I can’t wait for the world to hear.

When it’s safe to do so, will you go back to the office, work remotely or a combination of both? Why?

Definitely need to get back to the office.  We just opened up an amazing office in LA which I call The Energy Center, we’re all over doing Zoom meetings, it just lacks passion.  We’re in an industry that feeds off passion and creativity, and we can’t just do that in the comfort of our homes.  As people become comfortable and go through the motions, nothing really gets accomplished. 

Artist to watch break in the next year?

Tyla Yaweh and Sossee, the next wave to come out of London Ent.

How do you think livestreaming will or won’t be integrated into your business going forward? 

Two words: AUX Live.

Your favorite music documentary – recent or old?

The Rolling Stones documentary for the music side, and The Dissident about the Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Zoom, Clubhouse or TikTok? Why?

That’s a tough one, because we’ve made so many moves during this pandemic on there.  But TikTok is close because they’ve become a powerhouse in breaking records or starting viral trends today.