Serving the Police
Standing on the sidelines at a pre-concert meet-and-greet, Berklee student Jared Braverman felt two hands clap onto his shoulders. He turned around and found himself looking up at Sting. "Hey, buddy, how's it going?" the pop superstar asked.
"You just go with it," says Braverman. "The last thing you want to do is be a fan. You can't get overwhelmed by that stuff."
It's this sort of professionalism that got him his internship with Live Nation in the first place. The music business/management major was doing a paper for professor Jeff Dorenfeld's Music Intermediaries class, for which he had to interview professionals in the industry. He set his sights high—Arthur Fogel, chairman of Global Music for Live Nation and the president of The Next Adventure, Live Nation's tour producer.
"No one knows the touring industry better than him," says Braverman. "He's molded it into what it is now and he's continuing to change the industry. Live Nation is taking on every aspect of an artist's career—the merchandise, the albums, everything—and he's a big part of that."
It took five weeks just to track down Fogel's contact information, but Braverman was persistent. And that persistence paid off. When he finally was able to email Fogel, the executive responded within five minutes to set up a phone interview. Braverman prepared for the interview by researching Fogel's career in depth. When he spoke to Fogel, the man was so impressed that he offered Braverman an internship at Live Nation's L.A. office. Of course, Braverman dropped everything and went.
In L.A., Braverman worked for Live Nation's CFO, analyzing expense reports for tours. "I was looking at what our projections had been for how much the tour would gross, and then comparing that to what the actual numbers were and seeing what the variance was," says Braverman. "You get to see every little detail about what goes into putting on a tour. Two hundred sheets of paper with invoices on each and every one of them-and that's just one show. Of a 40-day tour."
Braverman also went on tour with the Police, helping set up hospitality for meet-and-greets, like the one at which he met Sting. "It's a lot of stuff dealing with ticketing and the fans and making sure they had a good experience. When it comes down to it, the main goal is to make sure the fans are happy. They're paying a lot of money to see this band, they waited 30 years to see this band, so you want to make sure everything goes perfectly."
As part of Berklee's internship program, Braverman met with a class in L.A. every other week to write about his experiences, an exercise that was really helpful for him. "We had to do journal entries and write a final paper. It gives you a chance to step back from what you're doing and actually think about it. You get into a routine working ten to six every day, but when you step back and write about what you're doing, you learn from that and start to pick up on what you could be doing better, what you could ask from them that would help you to learn more."
In the fall, Braverman interned at Live Nation's Boston office—the booking office this time—while continuing his classes at Berklee. He plans to go back to the L.A. office for a full-time job in the spring, while finishing up his classes online, in order to graduate in May.
Braverman says, "I think Berklee's given me everything I need to go out there and be successful, between the classes, the contacts, everything."