Sharon Osbourne accused AEG Presents of “blackmailing” her husband after she released a copy of an unsigned agreement from AEG, requiring that her husband, Ozzy Osbourne, perform at least one of his farewell shows at Staples Center if he is to play Los Angeles, as a condition of booking The O2 in London. Partner Ed McPherson was quoted in the Pollstar article “Legal Eagles on AEG’s ‘Statement of Commitment’ For Ozzy’s Last Tour,” discussing block-booking policies as they stand between venues and promoters, as well as the weight behind a potential lawsuit from Sharon Osbourne.
“It’s typically not a good thing, but that’s because there is usually some detriment to the artist,” said McPherson. “I don’t think in this particular case there is any real detriment to the artist to have to play at Staples rather than The Forum. Ozzy is using the same promoter in the same city, it’s the same audience, and not in some lesser venue or some inferior building. I don’t see it as that big a deal. I see some of these going on and some of them I could have an objection to, clearly. But this one doesn’t seem that onerous.”
McPherson, who numbers Linkin Park, Tool, Evanescence, David Lee Roth, and the Go-Go’s among his artist clients, explains that the carrying out of block-booking goes back to studios owning movie theatres, and notes, the situation between venues and promoters is different.
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