Author Archive

Avenged Sevenfold

The members of Avenged Sevenfold were well into work on the album of their lives. Then, in an instant, their lives changed. The Rev had died. They hadn’t just lost their drummer. They’d lost a family member – a guy who was best friends with vocalist M. Shadows since second grade in the Orange County town of Huntington Beach, and with guitarist Synyster Gates since fifth grade. The Rev had established himself as one of the most astounding, musical drummers in rock. He was beloved not only by the band, but by their extended family that includes the fans, from the first few locals when Avenged Sevenfold started out more than a decade ago, to the millions who now cherish their albums and have seen their unforgettable concerts worldwide.

Nightmare, the album the band was working on when Jimmy Sullivan died in late December, was already shaping up to be a dark masterpiece, a concept album tracing a journey of madness, despair, and, yes, death. The songs forged all of what Avenged Sevenfold had done before into a visionary prism bringing out new range on one hand and a focused intensity on the other. They already stood as a culmination of the journey from the indie metal-and-beyond 1999 debut Sound the Seventh Trumpet (recorded when the members were each just 18), through the constantly surprising, startlingly boundary-busting City of Evil (2005), and Avenged Sevenfold (2007), which turned these five friends into a global rock force, with all the power of what had become a concert powerhouse (as captured in the 2008 CD/DVD release Live in the LBC & Rough Diamonds). But now real life – and real loss — rendered that almost trivial. Even continuing work on the album seemed impossible, unimportant for Shadows, guitarists Synyster Gates and Zacky Vengeance, and bassist Johnny Christ.

“We were going to see if we could write another song or two,” says Shadows of the days following the Rev’s death. “And we couldn’t. We weren’t in the mood for it. Sitting there trying to figure out chord progressions and guitar parts felt ridiculous.”

But soon the band realized that it was impossible for them not to continue, that it would be almost a betrayal of the Rev’s legacy and their love for him.  He’d played an integral role in writing and crafting the tracks that had been demoed for the album. And just days before he died, he’d completed his ultimate accomplishment, baring his raw emotions in the song “Fiction” that now seemed to have foretold his own death and assured his friends in no uncertain terms that they had to carry on.

Most of the lyrics were rewritten, drummer Mike Portnoy (of the band Dream Theatre) was brought in to do the Rev’s in-theory inimitable parts, producer Mike Elizondo (Dr. Dre, Eminem, Regina Spektor) stayed on to help everyone rise to the now-transcendent occasion. “Nightmare” (the first single), “Welcome To The Family,” “Buried Alive,” “God Hates Us,” “Victims,” the closing epic “Save Me” – songs completed before and after the tragedy – all plumbed new depths of emotion and meaning. Synyster Gates was moved to write lyrics for the first time, laying bare his grief on “So Far Away.” And Nightmare truly became the album of their lives, the album literally of the Rev’s life and an achievement for the ages documenting the most intense, personal experience these people could imagine.

“It’s about how we were feeling at the time and are still feeling,” Shadows says. “When it first happens it’s much more intense. I realize now that we’re going to have to live with it and it’s never going to go away. The record is a lot different than if we hadn’t opened ourselves up right when it happened. We were more vulnerable and willing to put it out on the line.”

Alex Reese

Alex Reese joins World Audience as an artist manager and digital marketing executive with a focus on branding and strategy. Alex coordinates and executes fully integrated digital campaigns for all World Audience clients and properties, and develops leading edge brand partnerships for the diverse roster.

Starting his career in the marketing department of Interscope Records, Alex has risen through the ranks of the industry by developing content driven marketing campaigns across digital and real-world space, partnering with multinational brands like AT&T, HTC, Ben Sherman, and more. Working with platinum-selling acts like Blink-182, OneRepublic, AFI, Rise Against, and others he’s developed a diverse skill set tailored to developing on and offline interactions between artists and fans.

Max Reissig

Max Reissig comes to the World Audience team as a Marketing Coordinator. Max arranges scheduling as well as interpersonal and social media outreach for World Audience while maintaining digital assets.

Max came to World Audience following his music studies at California State University Long Beach and music business applications at the Musician’s Institute of Hollywood. Max’s diversified skills include digital and social media marketing, promotional work with local artists, digital and real-world communication and relationship building, and live production assistance. Having excelled in both live events and in an office setting has given Max a unique edge in partnership communications and bridging the gap between artist, team, and fans.

Larry Jacobson

Labeled one of the music industry’s ‘Super-Managers’ by Billboard Magazine, Larry Jacobson is Founder and CEO of World Audience, a Los Angeles based talent management and live event production company. Since 2002, World Audience has developed a reputation for identifying and developing uniquely talented artists and establishing a strong and sustainable sense of global brand and identity. In addition, the company produces the 48 Hours Festival in Las Vegas.

Jacobson has worked with some of the most iconic artists in the history of recorded music, in every genre including pop, rock and country, who have collectively sold over 250, 000, 000 million records and headlined stadiums, major festivals, the Olympics and won Grammy’s, MTV Awards and more. A respected dealmaker and marketing innovator, Jacobson combines over 20 years of entrepreneurial, financial, legal and managerial experience with an in-depth background in building and leading brands and organizations of sizes ranging from $10, 000, 000 to $300, 000, 000.

Prior to forming World Audience, Jacobson was Senior Vice President of Capital Records where he was responsible for various creative and business operations of the label. Jacobson was also a principal in the substantial restructuring of the label, which accompanied the change in management at both Capital Records and its parent company, EMI.

Before his involvement with Capitol Records, Jacobson was a partner in and General Manager of  Giant Records, having led the label in all of its operations, including A&R, marketing, radio promotion, publicity and finance. Among his many accomplishments at Giant Records, Jacobson directly oversaw the highly successful campaign for Steely Dan’s first studio album in 20 years and Grammy Award winning, Two Against Nature. Additionally, Jacobson discovered and launched the career of multi-platinum rock band, Disturbed, while also having signed and A&R’d the double platinum soundtrack, Dazed and Confused.

Jacobson began his career as a real estate attorney in prominent Los Angeles law firm Buchalter, Nemer, Fields and Younger.

Jacobson has also been active in Washington politics, as it pertains to the music industry. He has consulted with United States legislators, including Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle, among others as his non-partisan focus advises government leaders on the real world challenges artists face in the current climate of the industry.

Jacobson is a General Partner of multi-family real estate partnerships holding property throughout Southern and Northern California.

Jacobson is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Southern California Law School. He is a brown belt in the mixed martial art Krav Maga, and has trained with members of the Israeli Special Forces.


World Audience is a talent management and event production company based in Los Angeles, California. World Audience executives have worked with iconic figures in all genres of music who have collectively sold over 250,000,000 records and headlined stadiums, major festivals, and the Olympics, as well as won Grammys, MTV Awards, and more. The company also produces major festivals and other high concept live events including the annual 48 Hours Festival in Las Vegas. World Audience works in close relationship with the leading promoters, agencies, and corporate brands around the globe.

48 Hours Festival

Hedonism, Debauchery, Excess – Las Vegas and rock and roll are infamous for all three. Now, the inaugural 48 Hours Festival powered by Rockstar Energy Drink will give music fans the opportunity to indulge like never before!

The world’s biggest rock and roll party weekend, live from the Las Vegas strip, 48 Hours Festival is the premier 2-day over-the-top destination music festival.

Black Boots

BLACK BOOTS co-conspirators Pedi Amiri (a.k.a. Lightknife) and Mikey Francis (formally of Afghan Raiders) first joined forces in the summer of 2011 in a small apartment in the heart of Las Vegas. What started as a simple idea has rapidly evolved into a large-scale effort to give the emerging electronic dance music scene something different—timeless songs with substance, purpose and emotion.

“Signing with Ultra made the most sense for us,” says BLACK BOOTS. “It’s a big label with an independent spirit that gives us the opportunity to expose our music and vision to the world without compromising our art.”

What sets BLACK BOOTS apart in today’s electronic music world is their intricate backstory and vision. Imagine a dystopian landscape void of freedom. You can’t say what you want. You can’t emote how you want. You can’t listen to the music you choose. It’s an alternate reality ruled by an oppressive government clad in white uniforms and dominating with an iron fist. However, there is a symbol of hope on the horizon.

Enter two musical rebels known only as BLACK BOOTS. They are here for one reason alone, and that is to carry their message to the masses. They come armed with explosive big room anthems, punk rock attitude, orchestral breakdowns and massive pop melodies. They deliver an unforgettable performance. They offer an escape. With revolution in their hearts and on their minds, they’re about to stomp right through modern electronic dance music.

“We’re building a bridge here,” declares Lightknife. “BLACK BOOTS has got an electronic body, but a rock ‘n’ roll soul. At the same time, the songwriting is genuine and organic. It’s written with feeling.”

“BLACK BOOTS encourages chaos, sexuality, expression, and independence,” affirms Lightknife. “We’re freedom, and we’re lawless.” On the topic of electronic music, he states, “It’s not coincidental that dance music has risen to its current point of success. In times like this, people turn to the things that allow them to lose themselves. We aim to fuel that sentiment.”

Live, they certainly do. In fact, the onstage experience reflects the larger-than-life story at the core of the music as Mikeysings his heart out and Lightknife orchestrates the production in real-time via midi controllers, sequencers and synthesizers. Mikey elaborates, “We want people to tap back into their primal selves and experience something organic and real. If people walk away from our show with an experience, they’ll remember it for the rest of their lives.”

Ultimately, BLACK BOOTS are fostering a connection that is as timeless as it is innovative, and this is only the beginning of their story. “We want everyone to walk away with something that affects them emotionally,” the two architects agree. It’s romantic. It’s dangerous. It’s energetic. It’s new.