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INSIDE MUSIC: Ed Maier: A Man Behind-the-Scenes and Loving It!

By Rosemary Conte

originally published: 05/19/2016

INSIDE MUSIC: Ed Maier: A Man Behind-the-Scenes and Loving It!Today’s concert and theater goers can fill up their senses at high-tech shows that bathe them in sophisticated light, sound, and set visuals. The skilled workers behind the scenes are responsible for the sound and “the look” of a show on which an artist’s image and business depends. Ed Maier is one of those people responsible for making it all work. 

I met Ed when I was performing at the former Chico’s House of Jazz in Asbury Park, where he was operations manager, and did everything---moving from bartender to light and soundman. Since then Ed has worked on both small stage and stadium shows like Bamboozle, Asbury Park; and the 2015 NBA All-Star Experience, NYC. Recently, I ran into him at the Wonder Bar in Asbury Park, after he had worked on a Jay-Z + Beyonce tour, and  Eminem + Rihanna’s Monster Tour. I had questions:

Seems to me you’re a “jack of all trades” in show production. When asked what do you do, what do you say? I’ve been manager at shore clubs, like the Wonder Bar, and I have my own production company, ElmThree Productions. Recently, I was named event coordinator for Madison Marquette, developers of the Asbury Park waterfront and boardwalk. In that capacity, I’m producing a series of 20 summer concerts on the beach at the Anchor’s Bend, a restaurant and bar on the north side of Convention Hall. I call it “Jam in the Sand” and it will feature country, rock, jazz and blues shows for audiences over 21. The shows will be free.

What was it like to work on the Beyonce show? It was something unexpected:  I was one of the assistant site coordinators for the FOX Sports show in Times Square for the Super Bowl. The set up and tear down of that lasted almost a whole month.  The head site coordinator was Ken Graham, or my Uncle Ken as I now call him. He is one of the kings of the behind-the-scenes world.  We worked well together. He saw my potential and recommended me for the job as a site coordinator on the Jay-Z + Beyonce Tour two summers ago, which lead to the Eminem + Rihanna Tour.  It was surreal at times, but it really felt like home.  I had a lot of responsibility and loved the ability to make a difference on such a large scale, even if it was something as small as changing a spot position because it made more sense; or working with an electrician to get a 30 amp service through somewhere it doesn’t normally go.  On earlier days of set up I might have crews of 20, but on load in and load out, having local crews of 150 looking for direction was exhilarating. I loved every minute of it.

How did you train for your work? There was no training. I always learned hands on. If someone above me liked what I did, I got a better position.



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Did you ever want to be out front instead of behind the scenes? I never had aspirations to be on stage. I wish my parents put a guitar in front of me at a young age, but I love what I do now.  It’s great being a part of something bigger than myself.  Having someone leave a show that I produced or was a part of and say thank you is good enough for me.

INSIDE MUSIC: Ed Maier: A Man Behind-the-Scenes and Loving It!

I’m of a mind that tech people and how they do their jobs can make or break a show.  What do you say?  I never want to think that I am someone that is bigger than the show. Without all the parties involved working well together, the show doesn’t happen. And whether a club show or a stadium show, sometimes the little interactions throughout the day can affect the performance for the better. That’s kinda cool.

What are the best and worst things about your job(s)? The best thing is when it’s MY SHOW.  I went after the band because I love them; I made the deal and booked the band; then I created the poster, and a ton of people showed up and thanked me at the end.  That’s the best! The worst is when I’m dealing with things that aren’t a part of the show itself, but are a part of the day.  Since it’s my job, I have to deal with whatever comes up.  Everyone has uncomfortable situations, but when you’re the boss, you have to face them head on.

What would you advise someone who wants to be a technician or the site coordinator on a big show? If you love working tech, do it.  I had a 9-5 job and lived for my paycheck.  For some people that’s good enough. I have high aspirations. I might not be at the level I want yet, but if I smile often because I’m around music, then I win. I surround myself with live music because I want the goose bumps. I want the music to make the hair on my arms and the back of my neck stand up. That’s my passion. If that’s your passion as well, and you want to be surrounded by that every day, do everything in your power to make it happen. I wish I realized it sooner, because I might be even more in front of the curve than I am.





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State Theatre Presents Diana Krall: Turn Up the Quiet Tour
(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- State Theatre New Jersey presents Diana Krall live in concert as part of her Turn Up The Quiet World Tour on Friday, October 12 at 8:00pm. Tickets range from $43-$153.50.  This concert will feature songs from Diana Krall’s stunning new album, Turn Up The Quiet, out now on Verve Records as well as a mix of some fan favorites. 
Kean Stage Presents The Manhattan Transfer
(UNION, NJ) -- Going strong after more than 45 years, Grammy Award winner The Manhattan Transfer, with tenor vocals from Kean University alumnus Alan Paul '71, will captivate Kean Stage audiences with their distinctive four-part harmonies at Enlow Recital Hall on Sunday, September 30 at 3:00pm.
3rd Annual North Jersey Indie Rock Festival
(JERSEY CITY, NJ) -- The North Jersey Indie Rock Festival returns to Jersey City on October 6. Presented by Mint 400 Records and Sniffling Indie Kids, the festival includes acts from those labels and Little Dickman Records, Rhyme and Reason Records, and State Champion Records.  The festival takes place at White Eagle Hall. Doors are at 4:00pm and the music starts at 4:30pm. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door.
The Dryden Ensemble Presents Bach Cantata Fest
(PRINCETON, NJ) -- The Dryden Ensemble will present a Bach Cantata Fest on Saturday, October 20 at 7:30pm at Trinity Episcopal Church, 6587 Upper York Road, Solebury, Pennsylvania, and on Sunday, October 21 at 3:00pm at Miller Chapel, located on the campus of Princeton Theological Seminary, 64 Mercer Street, Princeton, New Jersey. Tickets are $25 for general admission and free to students with an ID. They may be purchased at the door or online at www.drydenensemble.org.
Steve Barton & Robert Darlington From Translator To Perform at Randy Now's Man Cave
(BORDENTOWN, NJ) -- Whether it's pure pop or moody acoustic ballads, singer/songwriter/guitarist, Steve Barton, has developed a reputation for crafting some of the most literate and poignant music in underground rock.  In addition to being a founding member of the revered punk/psychedelic band Translator, perhaps best known for the Barton-penned song "Everywhere That I'm Not", he has released several solo albums.  The seventh and latest, "Tall Tales and Alibis", is a sprawling triple album tour de force filled with Steve's brand new songs, which was released in March by Sleepless Music.   To celebrate the release of the record, Barton will be making a rare live appearance with his Translator partner Robert Darlington, this Sunday, September 23 at Randy Now's Man Cave in Bordentown (134 Farnsworth Ave) at 7:00pm.  


From the Ballpark to the Concert Stage: Bernie Williams LIVE! at The Grunin Center
Fans of sports and music are lining up outside Toms River, NJ’s Grunin Center of the Arts this Saturday, September 8, 2018 for a concert by four-time World Series Champion and Latin Grammy-Nominated guitarist/composer Bernie Williams and his All-Star Band!
“Here’s Lucie!” Lucie Arnaz LIVE! at the PNC Bank Arts Center
Even though the weather outside Holmdel, NJ’s PNC Bank Arts Center is cloudy with some light intermittent drizzle this Wednesday, September 12, 2018 afternoon, the venue’s stage is still shining brightly with talent thanks to a live performance by television, film, and stage actress/singer Lucie Arnaz!
Mike Aiken Talks About Aiken & Friends Fest, North Branch At RVCC
(BRANCHBURG, NJ) -- Raritan Valley Community College presents Aiken & Friends Fest, North Branch on Friday, September 21 and Saturday, September 22.  The three-day event will feature a number of different musical shows by Mike Aiken, as well as other solo artists and groups.  
Virtuoso Jazz Violinist Jean-Luc Ponty LIVE! at the Newton Theatre
It’s a warm but lovely Aug. 23, 2018 evening here in Newton, NJ. After enjoying some hand-dipped Cliff’s ice cream from the window at Hayek Market, we march up Spring Street looking forward to hearing some world-class jazz at one of the Garden State’s favorite concert venues, The Newton Theatre.
An Interview with Bernie Williams
Four-time World Series Champion and Latin Grammy-Nominated guitarist and composer Bernie Williams will perform with his All-Star Band at the Jersey Shore this Saturday, Sept. 8, 2018 at The Grunin Center of the Arts in Toms River, NJ!










Event calendar
Saturday, Sep 22, 2018


MUSIC

Asbury Park Porchfest @ Booskerdoo, Asbury Park - 12:00pm

Carl Chesna & Co. @ Hotel Tides, Asbury Park - 1:00pm

Echoes @ The Stone Pony, Asbury Park - 7:00pm

Cole Swindell @ Hard Rock Live Etess Arena at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Atlantic City, Atlantic City - 8:00pm

GRUPO NICHE @ Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), Englewood - 8:00pm

The History of Motown @ Englewood Public Library, Englewood - 7:00pm

Drake Bell @ iPlay America, Freehold - 7:00pm

Classic Stones Live feat. The Glimmer Twins @ The Levoy Theatre, Millville - 8:00pm

Opera Theatre of Montclair Presents Hansel and Gretel @ Central Presbyterian Church, Montclair - 4:00pm


Oscar D’León with Tony Vega and Los Hermanos Moreno @ Prudential Hall @ New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), Newark - 8:00pm

SunDog Band at Duffy's Tavern, Paterson NJ @ Duffy's Tavern, Paterson NJ, Paterson - 9:00pm

Celtic Thunder X @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 8:00pm

Young Person's Concert @ River Dell Middle School Auditorium, River Edge - 1:00pm


Tigerman record release show for “Descend Into Savagery” @ Debonair Music Hall, Teaneck - 8:00pm

Hubby Jenkins @ Lizzie Rose Music Room, Tuckerton - 7:30pm







THEATRE

Souvenir @ Surflight Theatre, Beach Haven - 8:00pm

East Lynne Theater Company presents SILENT SKY @ First Presbyterian Church (Cape May), Cape May - 8:00pm

The Shuck @ Cape May Stage, Cape May - 3:00pm and 7:30pm

Incorruptible @ Ritz Theatre Company, Haddon Township - 8:00pm

West End Festival of the Arts- Theatre Brut Session 2 @ West End Arts Center, Long Branch - 2:00pm

Evita @ Broadway Theatre of Pitman, Pitman - 2:00pm and 8:00pm

Seuls en Scene French Theater Festival - "Claire, Anton et Eux" @ Class of 1970 Theatre, Whitman College, Princeton - 2:00pm and 8:00pm

HUMAN ERROR by Eric Pfeffinger @ West Windsor Arts Center, Princeton Junction - 8:00pm

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest @ Black Box PAC, Teaneck - 8:00pm

Assisted Living: The Musical @ Jay & Linda Grunin Center For The Arts At Ocean County College, Toms River - 2:00pm

Brick City @ Premiere Stages at Kean University, Union - 3:00pm


DANCE

SWAN LAKE - THE ATLANTIC CITY BALLET @ The Strand Theater, Lakewood - 7:00pm

SOLE Defined @ Mainstage @ Union County Performing Arts Center (UCPAC), Rahway - 8:00pm


LITERATURE

Monthly Saturday Writing Retreats @ Tiferet Journal, Bernardsville - 9:00am

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