NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess) – New York based Universal Attractions Agency has announced the hiring industry veteran Joel Brandes to helm their newly minted casino division.
The new casino office will be based in Joel's current offices in Los Angeles. Brandes is expected to leverage his relationships with casino buyers to develop opportunities for Universal's roster, including MC Hammer, War, George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic among others.
Joel will continue in his role as manager for War & Family Stone.
Universal Attractions also announced that they plan on shifting to a territorial booking model that they expect will allow their agents to more effectively develop relationships with talent buyers.
The shift in booking models coincides with the large expansion for Universal Attractions, including at their New York headquarters, as well as their acquisition of World War Trading Company.
When asked about his new position, Joel told CelebrityAccess: "I have known Jeff Allen and Jeff Epstein for many years and I'm very excited to be joining their innovative and hardworking team. The Universal Attractions Agency (UAA) roster is very diverse. It includes George Clinton, who I worked with so many years ago when I was head of national promotions for Feyline in Denver. We promoted his first big tour with the legendary Mothership.
"In addition to my new responsibilities representing the UAA roster to casinos around the world, I will continue to manage WAR, who I managed in the 70's when "Spill The Wine" became a hit for "Eric Burdon & War" and coordinate the "Up In Smoke" package with WAR and Cheech & Chong, which we have developed over the last three years. I think it is the best combination of comedy and music on the road today, and it is selling out most of the casinos we play. Matt Blake at CAA represents Chong and we work together booking the "Up In Smoke" dates along with Ben Fegan at Anonymous Content, who manages Cheech and with Fred Bolander, who did a lot of work on those dates. Although I am bringing WAR with me to UAA, I can't overstate my appreciation of Fred Bolander and all the great people at Paradigm who represented WAR during the last three years but this was an opportunity I couldn't pass up.
"This is also an important time for WAR. They have been nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for the third time and we are hoping this will be year they are inducted.
"90's music is the hot trend on radio and indications are that this is a match for the players demographics at Casinos. This is perfect for UAA artists like MC Hammer, Naughty by Nature, Blackstreet, SWV, and Salt N’ Pepa. I am also honored to be booking legendary acts like the Stylistics, who I grew up listening to, and the Family Stone, who I will continue to manage as well." – Staff Writers