Conan’s drummer brings his act to the U

By By Rochelle McConkie

By Rochelle McConkie

Fans of Max Weinberg, from “Late Night with Conan O’Brien” and a member of Bruce Springsteen’s the E Street Band, can hear the artist live tonight in the Union Ballroom.

At the event, sponsored by the Associated Students of the University of Utah Presenter’s Office, Weinberg will leave his drum set behind to put on a free one-man show for U students, talking about his experiences in the music industry and as both an artist and producer.

“He’s not only part of the Conan O’Brien show, but tours with Bruce Springsteen – there should be some interesting stories for students,” said Amanda Mecham, director of the Presenter’s Office.

Weinberg is a drummer for the late-night talk show, where he is the leader of the show’s band, The Max Weinberg 7, and sometimes performs in skits with O’Brien. He also plays the drums for Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band and is on tour with the band. Weinberg has also started his own production company, called Hard Ticket Entertainment.

Students said they were mostly coming to the show because of their interest in the Conan O’Brien show.

“I like Conan’s show better than other late-night talk shows and I like that Conan uses Max in some skits,” said Sam Loveridge, a senior in exercise and sport science. “I’m interested to see what he’d do on his own.”

Junior business major Damon Peterson said he likes Weinberg’s “responses to Conan’s antics” on the show.

“I love his skits on Conan, and for a drummer, I think he’s a good actor,” Peterson said. “I’m surprised he’s coming to the U.”

Cameron Hansen, who is in charge of booking speakers for Presenter’s Office events, said he contacted Weinberg’s agent, who thought the show was a great idea.

As of yesterday afternoon, about 300 students had picked up tickets for the show. Students can receive up to two free tickets with a UCard at the Union front desk.

Non-students can purchase tickets for $12. Monday morning Thomas Petersen, who works at the front desk, said he had yet to sell a ticket to a non-student, but students had expressed a lot of interest.

“Right before we started selling tickets, people were coming and asking about it quite a bit,” Petersen said.

Tickets will be available throughout the day, but will cap at 800 people.

Mecham said the Presenter’s Office worked with the College of Fine Arts to increase student support and interest in the event. The College of Fine Arts has been promoting it in college council meetings, student advisory committees and through a mass e-mail to faculty members. Students in some music classes are getting extra credit to attend the performance.

“It’s good to have the opportunity to have someone of this caliber coming to campus,” said Brent Schneider, associate dean of the College of Fine Arts. “It’s good for students thinking of having a career in music, but also for anyone else, with the idea of following your dreams.”

“A Great Night With Max Weinberg” is part of a series of speakers ASUU will feature this year. Starting next month, Mecham said the Presenter’s Office will start a regular forum called “Crimson Cafe,” in which students can express opinions at an open microphone at the Residence Halls.

The first Crimson Cafe will be held in November and will focus on political themes related to the upcoming elections.

Max Weinberg, drummer for Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band and “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” will perform tonight at the Union Ballroom.