This Guy Looks After the Legacy of Kurt Cobain, The Ramones, The Doors and More

When a famous artist passes on, he/she/they can be outlived by their art, a massive and valuable body of work that requires intense care, feeding and protection. This is where a guy like Jeff Jampol comes in. From the New York Times:

Prince died in April, leaving behind an estimated $300 million estate, a vault full of unreleased music and an untold number of people looking to lay claim to his fortune. More than 20 Tupac Shakur albums have been released since the rapper was gunned down in 1996; with the death of his mother, Afeni Shakur Davis, in May, the future of his catalog is uncertain. The fate of unreleased Kurt Cobain recordings has had his former Nirvana bandmates and widow, Courtney Love, fighting (and reconciling) in public for two decades.

Musicians’ estates can be managed effectively, or run into the ground. That’s why people call Jeff Jampol, who specializes in managing the performers that the music business calls legacy acts and that the general public refers to as dead people.

The roster of his privately held company, Jampol Artist Management, or Jam Inc., is chock-full of Rock and Roll Hall of Famers, including Janis Joplin, Otis Redding, the Ramones, Muddy Waters, Jefferson Airplane and the Doors. (Some of those bands have surviving members but are missing key personnel and have no hope of ever reuniting.) A new addition to the client list: Mr. Cobain, whose work is “going to be relevant for centuries,” Mr. Jampol said.

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Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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