Dedicated to the Business of Contemporary Live Music

Agent pioneer David Apps dies

7 August 2018

ONE OF the leading lights of the emerging contemporary agency business in the 1960s and 1970s, David Apps, died on 18 July after a short illness.

British-born Apps, who was 83, had lived in Western Australia since the early-‘90s.

Starting as a trainee ballroom manager with Top Rank in 1956 and progressing to full manager, Apps coordinated a Bill Haley tour and got a taste for live music.

In 1961 he became an agent with the George Cooper and Larry Parnes companies, working with acts such as Johnny Kidd and The Tornadoes. He also got into show production and arranged UK tours for US artistes including Bobby Darin and Brenda Lee.

In 1963, Apps worked for Tito Burns’ agency, where artistes included the Rolling Stones, Searches, Zombies and Dusty Springfield, and booked European tours and TV shows for Frank Zappa, Otis Redding and Simon & Garfunkle. When he became head of Harold Davidson’s agency, he added Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendix, The Hollies and Small Faces to his portfolio, and was also appointed UK booking representative for Woodstock Festival in the US.

Among other acts he toured across Europe were Jefferson Airplace, The Doors and Bob Dylan.

In the early 1970s, Apps moved to MAM where he worked with the Stones, The Moody Blues, Kiki Dee and Humble Pie.

“He used to yell at me a lot, but we also had a lot of fun in those days and he taught me how to be an agent,” says fellow MAM booker at the time, Barry Dickins, now co-MD of International Talent Booking.

After relocating to Australia, Apps became involved more in video, TV and theatre projects, but stayed in regular contact with associates from his agency days, helping them locally when he could.

Apps is survived by wife Helen Jane, daughter Suzanne, son Simon and grandchildren Chloe, Aaron and Hillary.

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