Friday, May 07, 2010

The original "piece of work"

c.1964, King Records founder and CEO Syd Nathan recorded a 35-minute motivational-slash-instructional speech to be distributed to his sales staff. Nathan was a music biz lizard if ever there was one, and the resultant recording captures him in all his unapologetic scuzziness.

Delivered in a raspy voice that ranges in excitement from apoplectic to edge-of-a-stroke, Nathan's lecture ultimately serves as a master class in how to run a successful record company. Bottom line: geniuses need not apply!

Collectable quotes: "The record business is not a freak business. It is the same as being in the coffin business, or a funeral parlor"; "I'm more Dutch than I am Jewish!"; "Gimme my hat and I'll give it to ya and godspeed." --- Phil M.

Hear here

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Did you ever hear a tape of the phone conversation between A Decca Records executive and 20 year old Buddy Holly, where the exec made it very clear about who was master and who was slave?

Now, 50 years later, the exec is a forgotten nobody, while Buddy will be a legend for 100 years to come.