The Time the Rolling Stones Fired Donald Trump (And Keef Pulled a Knife)

Pollstar published a Rolling Stones vs. Donald Trump story yesterday that’s tearing through the social media. It quotes a story by Canadian promoter Michael Cohl, the man who reignited the Rolling Stones’ career with their Steel Wheels tour in 1989. It goes like this:

By the way, do you want to hear about the night I fired Donald Trump? We have to figure out the pay-per-view event. I realized that when they did a big boxing match they would separate the promotion and the fight. For the fight, you’d get a site fee from Las Vegas. You’d get a dollar, a million, a billion. Whatever. You’d get a “site fee” and you’d get a worldwide closed-circuit. I thought, geez, if I can separate the Stones from their own gig, and just concentrate on the pay-per-view, then I might pull it off.

So I go to them and say, “Look, let’s do a worldwide pay-per-view. We’ll get a big site fee; I’ll get you $3 million for a site fee and we’ll keep all the money for the pay-per-view.” And they agreed. I hadn’t told them completely what I had in mind, which is one of the rare times I wasn’t completely up front. I went around Las Vegas, and they didn’t really want it. They didn’t get it, they didn’t like rock music yet.

They didn’t follow it. And, unfortunately, the only person I could get to kind of agree to the site fee we needed and to work it through was Donald Trump. Now I had one of those, “Oh God, how am I going to do this?” moments.

And I opened my big mouth in the meeting with The Rolling Stones where they go, “This is all great, but we’re not going to be affiliated with Donald Trump. At all. Screw you.” And I go, “I will control Donald Trump! Don’t you worry!”

Read the whole thing here.

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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