Friday, May 01, 2009

Thanks, Sumner Redstone

I once did a post saying, Thanks, Bill Paley, the genius behind CBS (the network and the record label) for the TV shows and the albums he once made possible.

Today I say, Thanks, Sumner Redstone, who is basically Paley's successor in the media world.

Coincidentally, he just happens to be the guy behind the current CBS, but he expanded that media empire and is also the guy behind Viacom, probably best known as the MTV Networks - MTV, VH1, Nick, Comedy Central, CMT, BET, LOGO, and probably some others I don't know.

Thursday night, I stumbled onto a Neil Young concert on Palladia, which is one of his channels. It's a hi-def channel featuring concerts from all the MTV music nets - sometimes you get rock, sometimes country, sometimes rap, etc.

Wow, this was a great show.

Several years ago, in my music biz days, I worked in Times Square and was running across Broadway to my Chase Manhattan ATM and all of a sudden I see Sumner, who at that point was probably 79, coming toward me crossing the street from the Viacom building, and surrounded by a bunch of (I hate to say this, but it's true) toadies - well, at least they just looked like yes men, in their little grey suits.

I was just pleasantly surprised to see him walking around (remember, this guy is a multi billionaire who controls some of the most powerful media companies in the world) and I was taken aback and blurted out, "Hey, it's Sumner Redstone, whats up?" - Ok, lame, but what the hell was I going to say, I was in the middle of Times Square - and he said, "Hey, how ya doing!" He was probably surprised he actually got recognized, as I doubt most people would be able to pick him out of a lineup.

Of course, I've never seen or talked to him again, but I loved the fact that this guy, who controls CBS/MTV/Paramount, etc. etc. was just strolling around the streets of NY.

Anyhoo, I don't know if Sumner even freaken knows he owns Palladia, but I just want to say: Kudos Sumner, it's a great Channel.


l.w.t. said...

And of course I dont get that channel, my cable sucks!

marcus said...

Neil Young in concert? I wish I could see that live.

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