When we purchase a ticket to go see our favorite artists, we never think about the people behind the scenes. But without them the show would not go on. They are just as important as the bands we go to see. They spend countless hours planning, scheduling, organizing, solving problems and putting out fires before those fires get set. And all to make sure the show is a success and the crowd has a kiss ass time.
One of those outstanding individuals is none other than Brad Lee. Owner of Brad Lee Entertainment, LLC (BLE). You may not know his name. But if you’ve ever gone to any of the shows he’s put together, you’ve had a blast! His two babies are the Sleazy Slimy Sunday Series and the 6-Pack Holiday show. Both held in Maryland. If he is involved in the show, I know it will be amazing! He is a top notch and nicest person you ever want to meet. I have great respect for him, he is a true professional. One of the many reasons I picked him to be my first interview. So, without any further ado, I give you my Brad Lee interview.
Rocker Fabbs: Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview. I’m so happy to highlight someone who is just as important as the bands I go see.
Brad Lee: My pleasure! Thank you so much for your support for all we’ve done since day one. You’ve been a great ally and we are honored to have been chosen for this.
RF: Can you tell my readers a little about yourself? Where are you from, family, first music industry job you had, etc…
BL: Well I was born in Baltimore MD in the fall of 1980. My twin brother and I grew up the babies of the family, (A big family) Mostly female. Even though we were young we got into it (80s music) at a very young age. We listened to Michael Jackson and all that pop stuff too but 80’s “hair metal” was our choice go to! Riding around in the firebird (my cousins first car) blasting Crüe is a fond memory! As a kid I never really saw myself in the industry. I just listened to music and it was always around, but I really wanted to be an undercover NARC growing up. My father and me and Bryan (bro) would always watch COPS and Americas Most Wanted together and it was always an interest of mine. As I grew things changed as they often do. I got into trucking and I also did a brief go in the US Air Force. Once I came home I got into tattooing heavily and was consumed with my trucking gig. The tattoo and music industry went hand in hand, and I saw myself getting further involved in music. I guess you could say I created a following. The more i went out and became seen in the scene the more people wanted to know who I was, what I did, what band I was in. I had never been the shy guy (at least not in a crowd). I’m shy one on one but in a crowd in more the life of the party. I started doing some things to help book and manage behind the scenes prior to starting BLE (even prior to the LLC). In 2016 I was injured at work (trucking) and hurt my back. There’s goes the tattooing! Sat on the couch for over a year wondering what was next…what if I lost trucking too? Time to get serious…I started getting more involved in social media. Started BLE and ran with it. The company is now a successful LLC and here we are. So, the short is that this is the first industry job I had …aside from bouncing (lol) and where I’m from is a trailer park just outside of Severn, Maryland.
RF: What was your first concert?
BL: My first concert believe it or not was the P. Diddy and the Family tour in 1996. I was working at Pizza Hut and my brother and I went with about 8 of the waitresses who worked with us…. not a rockin answer but sue me … (lol) you want the truth don’t ya?
RF: Do you have a favorite type of music? Favorite band?
BL: I’m all over the place. As stated, I prefer the 80s genre, but it really does matter what I’m in the mood for. I grew up with parents who had “mood” music. Music that fit whatever they were doing at the time. I’m a chameleon. I really like a lot of Motown and doo wop. I like some country. I like classic rock. I like yacht rock. You’d really be surprised to take a road trip with me that is more than 60 mins. (Lol) I have musical ADD!
RF: Most memorable moment of an artist you’ve met or your career?
BL: Jesus …I’m not sure I have an answer for this one. So many artists have had an impact on my life and have helped make this what it is today. I’m not sure I can answer this the way it was asked so I’m gonna do my own little spin to it if that’s ok….”most memorable moment” This came just this year when I was nominated by the Maryland Music Awards as the largest contributor of 2018 recognizing the work we’ve put in to help build a scene. As far as artists I’ve met. To be honest one that sticks out is when at our very first show we had the pleasure of working with Ted Poley. Even though it was our very first large-scale show Ted called me up on stage and publicly praised me as being his favorite promoter he had ever worked with. To me that really was a large accolade. Being our first show and already being noticed for doing things differently by someone of Ted’s caliber was an incredible feeling.
RF: Did you ever want to be in a band?
BL: Of course. Who doesn’t? Everyone has that ego side that wants to be the star, (Or at least they should) It’s that need for competition and being able to showcase your talent. I do karaoke occasionally but that’s as far as I’ve taken it. Who knows what the future may bring but I’m happy in the role I’m in at the moment.
RF: What was the reason you got into the music business?
BL: Honestly, I just wanted to make a difference and break some of the stereotypes that “promoter” is a dirty word or a sleaze ball term. I’ve been to the “shit shows” where VIP weren’t given what they paid for or bands weren’t paid or the person putting on the show wasn’t even there …I had and have a vision for a much different way to conduct business. It doesn’t have to be dirty.
RF: What is the reason you started your own company, BLE entertainment, instead of working for an already established company?
BL: I’m not sure how to say this so I’m just going to say it. I don’t feel anyone else had the same vision to encase what I wanted to do. That’s not to say there aren’t companies or brands I respect. There are a handful that I believe are cemented and instrumental in the future of this business. (One or two out Midwest) (2 or 3 in our Mid-Atlantic region) (2 down south). If we can all do our part, I think we can provide live music for our supporters for the foreseeable future quite easily! Short answer is I want to put forth my vision and I don’t really want anyone to help with the recipe. I believe in the recipe the way it is.
RF: It seems like you put your heart and soul into every show you plan. What drives you when putting these shows together?
BL: This is very simple. I may not always comment but I see everything. I see people stressed the fuck out during their everyday 9 -5 lives. We are here to provide that break from reality. When I see supporters grinning ear to ear and enjoying themselves even if for one evening that’s one evening, they don’t have to worry about anything, and they can let their hair down. It’s a great feeling to help provide that.
RF: I’m most excited for Rocklanta, your next big show/festival. Can you tell my readers about it? Why did you choose Atlanta?
BL: Sure. Well Rocklanta is a 2-day festival on an intimate scale. It will be held on March 29 and 30 2019 at Center Stage (an intimate theatre venue in Atlanta, Georgia.
This show has 14 bands which include Warrant, Firehouse, Dangerous Toys, Tyketto, (The only U.S show) Hardcore Superstar, XYZ, Kickin Valentina, Lillian Axe, Tora Tora, Roxy Blue, The Eastside Gamblers, Denman, Babylon Shakes, and O.D.D.
Atlanta was chosen because of the tremendous rock following there and also, we wanted to try our hand in another market. You never know your true numbers staying in your comfort zone and you can’t go back to the same well all of the time either. If Rocklanta is a success perhaps we will dabble a bit more down south. We shall see.
RF: Any other projects you’re working on that you can tell us about or are they top secret?
BL: Top Secret (lol) but I’m always working I never stop…I’m not wired that way…there’s always something going on. We are just getting started.
RF: Anything else you’d like to share?
BL: Sure let me share my social media links and also my website and if anyone is interested in tickets for Rocklanta they can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com! Thanks so much for the opportunity and we wish you the upmost success with your future blogs and interviews Anna-Maria! Thanks so much for your support as always!
Thank you again.
I want to thank Brad Lee again for taking the time and being my first interview. He truly is top notch. Brad Lee Entertainment, LLC (BLE) is branching out and may hold an event in your state. So be on the lookout if you hear of a show that BLE is the promoter, GO! Do not hesitate about going! You will have the time of your life at one of his shows!! You will not be disappointed.