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Most Recent Episode

May 22, 2023

Episode 5: Michael Jackson’s Thai Showdown

It’s 1993, and Michael Jackson embarks on a world tour after facing his first sexual abuse charge. Wherever he goes is chaos. Then, in Thailand, the tour takes an absurd turn as MJ wants to cancel a concert. Thailand’s royal family has other ideas, putting pressure on local promoter Brian Marcar. We take listeners inside the circus of Michael Jackson’s life in the early 1990s.

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May 15, 2023

Episode 4: Kenny G, Jackie Chan, and an Unlikely Hong Kong Controversy

Kenny G is beloved in China. His tune “Going Home” is played to close shopping malls. So, in 2014, Kenny wasn’t expecting the backlash that occurred when he inadvertently takes a photo with pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. Called out by China’s Foreign Ministry, Kenny calls on his friend Jackie Chan for advice. Adam Wilkes is left running around, trying to avert a diplomatic incident.

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May 8, 2023

Episode 3: The Beach Boys, Nancy Reagan, and a Ban on the 4th of July

In 1983, at the height of concern over drug culture, a moralizing Reagan cabinet member bans the Beach Boys from playing a July 4th party on the Mall. The group, promoted by John Meglen, are furious. But then Nancy Reagan, a superfan of the band, steps in to help out, and the ensuing publicity helps the Beach Boys launch one of the great comebacks in pop history.

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May 1, 2023

Episode 2: The Rolling Stones Concert That Won Over Castro, Obama, and Even the Pope

The Rolling Stones, with four Grammys and 200 million in record sales, have no more dreams to chase…until Mick Jagger decides he wants to play Cuba. Adam Wilkes is sent down into the newly open Communist state to prepare. With $50,000 in cash, his team plans for one of the strangest concerts in history. Even President Obama and the Pope can’t stop The Stones.

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Apr 24, 2023

Episode 1: Prince’s Super Bowl Comeback Shakes the Music Industry – and Michael Jackson

Most Prince fans forget he was once in the wilderness after his 1980s heyday. He’d walked away from his record contract and had released a slew of albums that didn’t chart. Then, with John and Paul as promoters, he stages a major comeback. In 2007, he played the Super Bowl half-time show, considered one of the best ever live performances, followed by a popular Vegas residency. Micheal Jackson, whose career has failed to reignite like Prince’s, seeks inspiration in his old rival’s renaissance.

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Your Hosts

Adam Wilkes

For two decades, accomplished concert promoter Adam Wilkes has been at the forefront of the live entertainment industry in Asia Pacific, initially as an event producer and promoter and more recently as the chief executive leading AEG’s strategic growth in the region.

Wilkes joined AEG in 2011, during which time he spearheaded the formation of AEG Presents in the Asia Pacific region, building an operation which has since promoted hundreds live events, including tours with Taylor Swift, The Rolling Stones, Ed Sheeran, Celine Dion, Katy Perry, Elton John, Justin Bieber, Metallica and many others; as well as, the NBA Global Games held annually in China, an event that Wilkes has been associated with since 2004. A global citizen and curious traveler fluent in Mandarin and Spanish, Wilkes and his family now proudly call Singapore their home.

Tom Wright

Tom Wright is cofounder of Project Brazen, a journalism-focused content studio, a NYT bestselling author and Pulitzer finalist. In 2018, he co-authored Billion Dollar Whale, the definitive account of one of the world’s most audacious frauds.

He’s the creator and host of Fat Leonard, an award-winning podcast about a man who corrupted the U.S. Navy. Both Billion Dollar Whale and Fat Leonard are being adapted for the screen. In 2020, Stanford University honored Tom with its Shorenstein award for services to journalism in Asia over a twenty year career.

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