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Live Nation, Maroon 5 Ink for the Long Run

Live Nation is now in the live Maroon 5 business. And not just for one tour. Billboard has learned that the promoter has not only cut a deal to produce rock act Maroon 5’s 28-city fall arena tour, but both parties have also committed to a full-blown Live Nation amphitheater tour for summer 2008. Maroon 5 will play at least 60 shows under the Live Nation banner by the end of next year.

The deal follows previous statements by Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino that he wants to extend the life of the relationship between artist and promoter beyond one show or tour.

At a time when the touring industry is focusing on developing more arena-level headliners, many think Maroon 5 might fit the bill.

“They are uniquely poised at this point in their career to be a huge force in the industry for years to come,” said Jason Garner, president of North American music for Live Nation.

“This is what everyone has said they would like to see — the promoter taking a step in the direction of helping to grow an artist’s career. We think we’ve come into this partnership at exactly the right time.”

The band’s fall “It Won’t Be Soon Before Long” tour, announced recently at the Live Nation-owned House of Blues in Los Angeles, begins September 29 at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Michigan with the Hives as support.

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