Following accusations of sexual misconduct, bullying and racism made against US concert booking agent John Finberg, several of his high profile clients, among them Nightwish, Amorphis, Delain, Amaranthe, Hammerfall and Swallow the Sun, have publicly severed ties with Finberg and the First Row Talent Agency.
In an in-depth investigation by the US-based website Metal Sucks, published on September 28, a number of individuals working within the American music industry made accusations against Finberg, with the story’s author stating, “his malfeasances are some of the worst-kept secrets in the business.”
Many others who’ve had dealings with Finberg refused to go on record, reported Metal Sucks, or agreed to do so only under the protection of an alias, for risk of incurring the booking agent’s wrath.
“People don’t wanna talk about it, don’t wanna be involved, don’t want to know,” says one woman who alleges mistreatment by Finberg. “They don’t want to point the finger at him because they’re scared.”
In the wake of the accusations, a number of Finberg’s most prominent acts sought to distance themselves from his company, via posts on social media.
pic.twitter.com/fvH2TJaWsISeptember 29, 2020
Amorphis does not accept any form of bullying, harassment or racism.Due to current allegations against First Row Talent Agency and John Finberg, effective immediately - John Finberg does not represent Amorphis in the United States, Canada or any other territory.—AMORPHISSeptember 29, 2020
Delain ceased to employ John Finberg during their last USA tour in 2019. First Row talent and John Finberg are no longer booking Delain in North America, Canada or any other territory. Delain does not stand for any form of harassment, bullying, sexism or racism.September 29, 2020
pic.twitter.com/dL3en1RA0RSeptember 30, 2020
Some of Finberg’s former clients have also spoken out on social media too.
“In the past Dirkschneider and U.D.O. have worked with John Finberg but stopped all cooperation after we realized his character,” said U.D.O. in a Facebook post. “We are shocked how disgusting the situation looks right now but also glad some people had the balls to go public. For us he is history since a long time but there is no way back to work with him ever again. Furthermore we stay united against each kind of intolerance such as sexism, racism etc. There is no place for this in metal and no place for this on this planet. We would like to encourage everyone to speak up and fight these disgusting behaviours everywhere!”
John Finberg has yet to comment on the allegations made against him.