Joel Oberstein, prexy of the indie retail consulting firm Almighty Music Marketing, died Friday at Los Angeles County/USC Medical Center. He was 50.
Oberstein had suffered from multiple sclerosis. He was being treated for the disease with steroids, and succumbed to West Nile virus contracted after the drugs weakened his immune system.
Born in San Francisco and raised in Southern California, Oberstein worked at the Tempo Records chain (where he rose to g.m.), Atlantic Records and promotion firm Right Between the Acts before founding Studio City-based Almighty/Isis with Clark Benson in 1995.
Almighty began life customizing Isis listening stations for hundreds of indie record stores, and went on to formulate a massive indie retail database and a Web site devoted to new independent releases.
Oberstein is survived by his wife and daughter. The family requests donations in his name be made to the MS general research fund at USC’s Keck School of Medicine.