In Pursuit of an “Entertainment Strategy”

As the song says, I love rock and roll. Now, despite the fact that I think music should be fun, something that provides entertainment and not salvation for the entire world, I am not so naïve as to think that it’s not a business. In fact, by promoting some of the labels, bands, clubs, radio stations, magazines and web sites that I think are cool, I am hoping that anybody reading The Rock and Roll Report will actually buy, visit or donate to them because they see the value in them like I do, but this morning I read an article in the business section of the Montreal Gazette that just made me shake my head. The article “Scrushy gave options to Sony exec” by Lawrence Viele of Bloomberg News ( I couldn’t find a link but this article details the background) talks about the actions of a CEO for a company called HealthSouth Corp. and its granting of possibly illegal stock options to the ex-CEO of Sony Music Entertainment Inc. Thomas Mottola. The part that gets me is that the then CEO of HealthSouth was pursuing for his company an “entertainment strategy.” Fair enough you say, but get what HealthSouth does. They are an operator of rehabilitation hospitals for crying out loud! This guy created a girl band called 3rd Faze that he wanted to use to promote a company that provides rehabilitation and outpatient surgery services. I actually have no problem with manufactured pop groups. They have been a part of the rock and roll landscape forever (I always liked The Monkees. Go rent Head now!) but this is just a bit too freaky for me to contemplate. Rock out with the babes while getting your back re-adjusted. Too weird.