Featured as one of last year’s HITS Rainmakers, Allen Grubman is the founder of the firm now known as Grubman Shire Meiselas & Sacks. Originally a music law firm, the practice has expanded over the last two decades into all areas of the entertainment business, and it now stands as the largest transactional entertainment law practice in the world.

The roster of the firm, founded in 1974, includes many of the most prominent individuals and companies in the biz. Allen’s clients include Bruce Springsteen, U2, Madonna, Sting, Elton John, Lionel Richie, Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler and Andrew Lloyd Webber, among others. Grubman also counsels major record and publishing companies, along with MTV, Live Nation and many media CEOs.

Grubman has established himself as a confidante of the industry’s biggest stars and moguls, a fierce negotiator and a dealmaker of the highest order, all while being the most colorful attorney in the biz.

In 1991, Larry Shire joined the firm, focusing on entertainment law outside the music world, including motion pictures, TV, theater, publishing, sports and licensing. As media evolved, Shire’s practice morphed into new media, as the firm now works with Facebook, Spotify, iHeartMedia and others in the digital, OTT and podcast arena.

Shire’s practice also includes crossover work, wherein the firm guides music clients as they venture into other areas of entertainment. Among these partnerships are Elton John’s involvement in the film Rocketman with Paramount Pictures, The Boss’ deal with Netflix for Springsteen on Broadway, Madonna’s film work and the Estate of David Bowie in all its activities.

The film, TV and new media department has recently worked on deals for LeBron James (lifetime Nike deal), Robert De Niro (The Irishman), Broadway and film producer Scott Rudin (To Kill a Mockingbird), Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman), Gayle King and David Letterman among others.

Robert Strent, Karen Gottlieb, Peter Grant

Longtime partners Karen Gottlieb (Dr. Oz), Peter Grant (De Niro) and Robert Strent (Spike Lee and Shay Mitchell) do much of the highly skilled heavy lifting in all these areas. Jonathan Lonner and Adam Rosen help drive the theater side of the practice, Jonathan Ehrlich has become the firm’s book publishing guru and Stuart Fried helps lead the branding and licensing team. Young lawyers such as Jordan Manekin, Jane Gross, David Ashley and Ted Fisher as well as veterans like Jonathan Birkhahn and Gil Karson work on all facets of the department’s thriving practice.

Kenny Meiselas is the head of the music department at the firm. The department specializes in the representation of elite superstar artists in all genres of music. Classic artists repped include AC/DC, Rod Stewart, the Estate of Whitney Houston, Barbra Streisand and Bette Midler. Next-generation superstars Lady Gaga, The Weeknd, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Usher, Norah Jones, OutKast and Andre 3000, as well as hip-hop giants Lil Wayne, Nas, Rick Ross, Rae Sremmurd, Nav and Future, are advised by Meiselas’ team.

In addition to the roster of generational talent, the firm also counsels rising stars Ella Mai, Bebe Rexha, Jhene Aiko, Madison Beer and Carly Rae Jepsen, along with songwriting and production talents David Foster, Timbaland, Avicii Estate, Esther Dean, Victoria Monet and Tayla Parx.

Leading the next generation of 
young lawyers at the firm is David Jacobs. He represents next-gen artists, many of whom were subjects of huge bidding wars, including Jessie Reyez, Dominic Fike, Lil Nas X and Sheck Wes, as well as producers Turbo, Malay, Andrew Wyatt, Take A DayTrip and Gesaffelstein. Attorney Matt Kamen represents A Boogie Wit da Hoodie and actress/singer Isabela Moner, and Grace Kim oversees the critically acclaimed Lizzo.

Veteran legal eagles who work side by side with Meiselas and Grubman on the superstar artists include Joe Brenner, Sonya Guardo, Don Friedman, Joseph Penachio, Pamela Gurley, Ted Harris and Nick Zabawsky. Guardo looks after Priyanka Chopra and Mary J Blige.

Brenner oversees Spotify, Group Nine, Genius and other new media ventures, as well as Sting and U2 (with David Toraya). Stuart Prager heads the music publishing department, while Michael Goldsmith leads touring. A team of young lawyers including Diana Kovacs, Oren Agman, Evan Levane and Ilana Shapiro round out the music team.

Transactions negotiated for the firm’s clients include not only customary music-based deals for records, publishing, touring and merchandising, but also media- based transactions, sponsorships, endorsements, equity agreements and strategic partnerships in branding apparel, fragrance, spirits, film and television.

Kyle Zimmerman, Eric Sacks, Branch Furtado, Jona Lundborg

Eric Sacks is head of the corporate department at the firm. Under Sacks’ leadership, the department has grown significantly over the past few years. The corporate department handles many sophisticated transactions across the firm’s practice areas. Along with giant media companies like Discovery, LeBron’s SpringHill, Vice Media, MSG Company, UMG, SME and WMG, the department has advised many high-profile execs in their employment arrangements, including Bob Iger, Michael Rapino, Jim Dolan, Richard Plepler, Marty Bandier and Sir Lucian Grainge.

The corporate department’s dedicated corporate lawyers include partner Branch Furtado, who oversees the transactions for several clients, including Discovery, Vice Media, and Industrial Media, and seasoned associates Jona Lundborg, Perri Birnbach and Kyle Zimmerman.


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