The next stage for Hodges: Nederlander Concerts COO

Reteams with unit chief Friedman

Nashville — Veteran live music executive Alex Hodges has been named COO of Nederlander Concerts, effective April 15.

Hodges most recently was an executive vp at Live Nation, a position he inherited in the wake of the company's acquisition last year of House of Blues Entertainment. Hodges came to HOB in 1994 and left Live Nation in January.

The move reunites Hodges with Nederlander CEO Adam Friedman; the pair worked to-gether for 10 years at HOB and its predecessor Universal Concerts until Friedman moved to Nederlander last year. Hodges also worked for Nederlander before moving to HOB. He also has en-joyed successful stints as an agent and as Stevie Ray Vaughan's manager.

"The dynamic duo is back," said Friedman, who said Hodges will execute Nederlander Concerts' strategy for growth.

"The strategy is a simple one: We need more inventory in the markets we currently operate in, and we want to take that experience in those markets and reach out to other markets that are logical extensions of what we already do," Friedman said. "We want to effectively create unique routing opportunities for artists going up and down the West Coast, into Arizona and the entire Western U.S."

Friedman said the goal is to give agents and managers another choice beyond national touring.

"We're ready to roll. We're well-funded, we're privately held, we don't have any distractions with Wall Street, we're a promotion firm," he said. "In order to accomplish that goal, I need a driver to really put together a cohesive approach with respect to talent and marketing and to execute this broad strategy. I've only got one guy who can do that, who has experience on every side of the business, who has experience competing against the gorillas and has succeeded, who knows how to put it all together and make it happen and drive the strategy every day. That's Alex."

Hodges said he's enthused about working again with Nederlander and Friedman.

"We worked together for a decade and accomplished a lot of great things," he said. "I look at the team and I say this is an accomplished, experienced, energetic team of people, and I've worked with almost all of them before in one capacity or another. The team, the leadership, the company are poised for growth."

Ray Waddell is an executive director at Billboard.