Nearly always dapper in a tailored jacket and tie, Bruce Lundvall lends positive meaning to the term “suit.” That’s what they used to call music-business executives, and Lundvall is an old-school record-company man in the best sense—in love with music, knowledgeable about it, interested in cultivating “artists” as opposed to “acts,” and willing to take chances. I got to know him in the mid-1980s, long after he’d risen from the Columbia Records marketing department to run the domestic operations of CBS Records, and after his stint as president of a reconstituted Elektra/Asylum/Nonesuch label. He’d already taken the reins of a revived Blue Note label in the mid-1980s, and I was getting started writing about music. That’s around the same time that Dan Ouellette began writing for Down Beat magazine, and began a wide-ranging career as a music journalist and critic. Now Ouellette is working on “Playing by Ear,” documenting Lundvall’s 48-year career. Get the story and interview here.
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