Michael Alago – Who The F*ck Is That Guy?
Michael Alago is a former rock & roll A&R Executive whose life story is the subject of the Netflix documentary “Who The Fuck Is That Guy?”.
He grew up in New York City during the 1970s and 80s, surrounded by artists like David Bowie, the Sex Pistols, Keith Haring, Andy Warhol and the Cro-Mags.
His obsession with music lead to a 25-year career in the industry, during which time he managed artists like Metallica, Cindi Lauper and Nina Simone.
After contracting AIDS and surviving substance abuse, he is now sober and healthy.
02:33 Brian’s thoughts on the episode.
03:24 Brian’s introduction.
04:04 Enjoying being back in London.
05:12 Love of music from birth leads to a job at The Ritz rock club,
07:11 What Michael and other people love about music.
08:23 The importance of the A&R department in a record company and the famous artists he worked with.
17:09 How he was able to find new bands and artists with great potential.
20:07 Hearing heavy metal band Metallica and knowing he had to have them in his life.
24:18 How that signing changed everything for them until the present day.
31:15 The vibrant New York City club scene when he was young.
32:43 East Village life and burgeoning art scene in the early 80s.
35:12 Crossover between music, art and the theatre.
41:46 The scary arrival of AIDs from which almost everyone he knew died and which he also contracted.
54:26 Michael’s part in the 1980s and ‘90s years of drug and alcohol excess until he knew he had to stop.
1:02:03 ‘What the Fuck is That Guy’ would not have been made if Michael had not changed his life.
1:08:30 The beauty of being able to show up every day, thriving and having a great life.
1:13:24 Michael continues to be involved in the music business, but now it’s about streaming and numbers.
1:19:15 The joy of the record album and vinyl.
1:21:33 Success secrets for young musicians.
1:22:02 What is Michael’s superpower.
1:22:52 His advice from what he learnt in business
1:23:39 What makes a good producer.
1:24:52 Doing service in the world, one person at a time: we hope the world feels that.
1:28:49 What scares Michael now.
1:30:33 What he might be doing in ten years.
1:31:45 Phone call to the twenty-year old Michael Alago.
1:32:56 Best advice he ever received.
1:33:42 Advice to the young person listening.
1:35:26 Brian’s summing up.
People mentioned in this episode: