Friday, April 27, 2018


In 1987, I started with Roadrunner Records in Europe. Sacred Reich, who I managed since Jason Rainey formed the band in my club, was signed to Metal Blade worldwide but licensed to Roadracer in Europe. Back in the day, when I was finding my way through the Metal Thicket, Roadrunner was called Roadracer Records. In no time at all, I signed another band I had found in Tucson, called Atrophy (Socialized Hate, Violent By Nature). Solid at Roadrunner, Atrophy was the Roadrunner number one selling band, at the time. Enter Monte Conner...

Monte came in replacing Holly Lane, the previous A&R person. We struck it off on the right level and in no time, Monte was asking me to manage certain was Sepultura. I promptly refused since I didn’t personally know them. I was never a manager sitting at a desk in some forlorn office. I worked with bands that were in my presence. For Gods sake, they were in Brazil! Next RR ploy was Cees calling me to work there and manage all the bands that had no manager. Nope, I couldn’t manage bands just for the sake of moola; I needed the comfort of chemistry.

Low and behold, in 1989, I arrive at the Ritz on a chilly NYC Halloween night with my Sacred Reichers in tow. Several managers are there, as RR had turned the Sepultura set into a manager showcase. You know how many managers approached them after their set? One. Me. No one wanted the band. I could feel something behind their accents, behind their monstrous flowing hair. I would take them and I would work for free for one year and refuse to sign a management contract until I knew we could get along. You all know the can each chose to believe the fake stories or the real makes no difference to me. 🤪

And through those years, Monte was always there, with his “Hi Glo, Hi General, Let’s master this record for a month, or his famous NO.” Heck we laughed a lot, passionately argued and even lied a little to get our way with each other but two things never swayed. Friendship and Loyalty. We walked through the best of times together and picked up our lead boots during the worst. We saw marriages and babies grow. And I admit, he drive me crazy a couple times when he mastered at Sterling Sound lol!! The funniest thing he ever suggested was doing a meet and greet with Zyon when he was 4 months old! The worst was when he suggested I toured Sep too long during Arise. I was starting the Long Road but it wasn’t clear to anyone else at the time lol

Monte has been a partner with Max throughout his signed career. He has taken that job seriously and tirelessly. His intentions are always peak and meticulous. The knowledge in that brain of his must be overwhelming and his ears are some of the best in the recording business!

Now as I work my upteenth record with Monte, I can reflect on more than one generation worth of time together and the future still sprawls far off in the distance. Monte, remember when you said you would never release two Max records in one year but I squeaked in 3? Haha good times. Taking names and kicking ass!

Class dismissed...