The Music Industry, Post-Payola

Secrets from the music industry:

“[A]ny citizen could walk into an airport and buy plane tickets with cash.

A common ruse was to have the A&R guy ( Artist and Repertoire) use company cash, buy tickets and give them to Local PDs at radio stations. These tickets were as good as cash but not a direct payment. The PD could either take a nice vacation or return the tickets to the airline at the airport. The friendly ticket lady would then refund the cash price of the ticket in full. Bingo! The PD “just got paid today.”

Gosh! If you have access to a wealthy and connected producer plus a steady supply of cocaine to stuff disk-jockey’s faces, there no telling how high your career might fly! It might fly like an eagle! You could buy a stairway to heaven!

That sounds hard to believe in today’s credit card world, but that’s how it was done. This was WAY before 911, so airports were more like train stations. You could just walk in and buy two tickets to paradise with cash; no ID, no record, no surveillance cameras, no traceability. That was how hits were made.”

via Nozame comments on What is a “dirty little (or big) secret” about an industry that you have worked in, that people outside the industry really ought to know?.