A Pollstar article on new rockstars Hinder mentions they spent $45,000 recording a demo with producer/writer Brian Howes (Daughtry, DDT, Closure). Writer Deborah Speer goes on to say that the music found its way into the hands of Nickelback tour manager Kevin Zaruk which in turn passed it along to Roadrunner Records (Nickelback’s record label). It appeared a signing was imminent, but then labels like Atlantic Records and Universal A&R guy Tom Mackay (3 Doors Down) did fly-ins to the band’s hometown of Oklahoma City. With regard to Tom Mackay witnessing their live show, Hinder frontman Austin Winkler is quoted (I assume facetiously) as saying,
We probably spent about $4,000 on his bar tab.
About a year ago, the very same Tom Mackay called me up asking for a meeting. As a Universal VP, he was looking for a “content provider” and wanted to discuss the potential alliance between myself and Universal in an A&R capacity. He remarked to me,
You’re the man, your reputation precedes you.
Did I ever actually work for Universal? Haha…stay tuned to find out. Incidentally when I corresponded with Brian Howes two years ago on March 15, 2005, I had asked him if he was working on anything new. Sure enough he was referring to Hinder’s big signing with his response,
Hi Gary, we just did a deal for one of our bands. I will let you know all the details next week. Lots of stuff happening. -BH