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Hello, Cleveland

The Boston Business Journal Executive Pursuits column featured thoughts from Larry Gennari, partner at Gennari Aronson. Larry shared highlights from some of the business books he has been reading as curator of the annual Authors + Innovators Business Ideas Festival.

Below is an excerpt from this article with a link to read the entire piece in the Boston Business Journal.

Executive Pursuits: Cleveland was music to my ears

by Larry Gennari

Cleveland: If it isn’t exactly first on your list for a weekend getaways and executive retreats. I want you to think again. 

Sure, it once was one of America’s largest cities, with a storied past that reflects the complicated economic history of the American Industrial Revolution. Even today, we look to such cities as Cleveland to make sense of the nation’s angst about innovation, the future of work, and an economy in transformation. The emerging balance of industries and pockets of creative development there now are incredibly interesting and vibrant. But that’s not why you should go to Cleveland. You go to Cleveland for rock ‘n roll — and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. 

After a direct flight from Boston, you’ll need at least two to three hours to tour the place. I spent five. Of course, before you go, you’ll also need some books. For background, I recommend that you start with a favorite from my bookshelf, Mark Winegardner’s Crooked River Burning, a ponderous, entertaining, and iconic novel set in Cleveland. Then, you’ll need some history on the start of rock and roll as a business. Lucky for you, author Ian Port’s new book The Birth of Loud is an incredibly entertaining saga of the rivalry and parallel lives of electric guitar innovators Les Paul and Leo Fender, both early Hall of Fame inductees. 

For perspectives on challenges in the industry today, you should read Eamonn Forde’s The Final Days of EMI, as well as Music on the Chain, Anthony McGuire’s new, short, readable book on the promise of block chain and the opportunities for artists to use technology to connect with their fans in direct and even more meaningful ways. 

So grab your headphones, a few business books, an old black concert t-shirt, and then head to the airport.  You know you want to do this.  As the King , Elvis Presley himself, once said: “You only pass through this life once, you don’t come back for an encore.”  

Please click here to read the entire Boston Business Journal article. Subscription required.

Lawrence Gennari is a business lawyer, law professor, and chief curator for Authors & Innovators, an annual business book and ideas festival.  

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