Sidney Seidenberg, a longtime manager for B.B. King and other musicians, died May 3 in Dover Town, N.J., after a long illness. He was 81.
He owned SASCO Productions in New York for 35 years and managed the careers of King, Gladys Knight and the Pips and others.
Seidenberg was born in Szczuczyn, Poland, and moved to the U.S. as a child. He served in WWII and studied accounting at NYU. Early in his career he worked with clients including the Dorsey brothers, Welsh singer Tom Jones, the Temptations and the Drifters.
In the 1960s, he worked for the Eastman law firm, whose topper Lee Eastman was business manager for the Beatles and Apple music. He then began booking concerts for Joe Glaser, President of Associated Booking, the longtime booking agency for B.B. King.
Seidenberg then established his own accounting practice where he continued working with show business clients, booking King at Bill Graham’s Fillmore East and the Newport Jazz Festival and on the Ed Sullivan, Johnny Carson, David Letterman and Jay Leno shows.
He also booked King on a 1970 tour with the Rolling Stones, an African tour sponsored by the U.S. State Dept., a 1979 tour of the Soviet Union and a tour with U2 in the early 1990s.
Seidenberg managed Gladys Knight and the Pips, signing them to record contracts with Buddah Records, where they produced hits including “Midnight Train to Georgia,” “I’ve Got to Use My Imagination,” “Neither One of Us” and “Best Thing that Ever Happened to Me.”
He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Edith, three children and seven grandchildren.