AKA Allen B. Klein
Birthplace: Newark, NJ
Location of death: New York City
Cause of death: Alzheimer's
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Prehensile ABKCO executive
For any who are suffering from an excess of admiration for either The Beatles or The Rolling Stones, an easy remedy can be found in examining how both groups were taken by New York bullshit aficionado Allen Klein. Klein began his "relationship to the arts" as an audit consultant, but no doubt he quickly recognized that there were richer mines to be dug than this field, and in 1960 he switched over to a business management racket. By 1967, Klein had also taken control of the Cameo-Parkway record label, which was then renamed ABKCO Industries.
The Rolling Stones suffered perhaps the greatest loss from their involvement with Klein. Through their dealings with him, the band lost all control over the copyrights to both their recordings and publishing produced between 1962 and 1971 -- including some of their most popular material, such as the songs Satisfaction and Jumping Jack Flash. Despite a lawsuit brought against Allen Klein by the Stones, this condition persists to the present, preventing the band from issuing any kind of career restrospective that includes recordings from this time period. Other artists similarly afflicted include Sam Cooke, Herman's Hermits and Question Mark and the Mysterians.
The Beatles involvement with ABKCO began in January 1969, when John Lennon appointed Allen Klein his personal advisor, in hopes of straightening out the free-for-all atmosphere prevailing at Apple records. In extremely short order, Klein also became business manager for both the Beatles and Apple Records. Three out of the four Beatles agreed to this arrangement; Paul McCartney, however, refused to sign and enlisted the law firm of his wife's family to keep an eye on Klein's activities. Klein did indeed clean house at Apple, but replaced the anarchic form of financial mis-management with a financial mis-management that directly benefitted himself. A series of convoluted contract negotiations resulted in the Beatles' loss of control of Northern Songs, a healthy cut of the profits going straight to Klein, and the loss of several promising young artists signed or about-to-be-signed to Apple (such as James Taylor) being lost to the aether.
In 1970, Paul McCartney filed suit against Klein and the other three Beatles in an attempt to extricate himself from the mess, salvage Apple Records, and oust Klein once and for all. Klein was eventually charged with mismanagement, but the subsequent legal struggle dragged out for nearly 10 years.
Wife: Betty (separated, one son, two daughters)
Girlfriend: Iris Keitel (also his personal secretary)
University: Upsala College (1956)
Tax Evasion 1979 (two months prison)
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