'Always leave your fans wanting more' is an old showbiz axiom that
some folks at Fleishman-Hillard are taking to heart.
CFO Fred Rohlfing, a drummer, put together a jazz group of Fleishman
execs for a recent company meeting. Scouring an 'interests database'
that the company has on employees, he found a clarinet player, SVP Andy
Katell in New York; a bass player, Bryce Bukowsky from the company's
computer group; and a lead guitarist, chief creative office Pierre
Ouellette, who had once toured with the '60s rock group Paul Revere and
the Raiders. On piano was Ron Watt who runs Fleishman Cleveland.
Rohlfing sent 30 songs to his ersatz combo to consider before the March
conference. But the band, dubbed 'Fred Rohlfing and The Bottomline' had
only two nights to practice together before playing at a Friday
breakfast session at the conference that had attracted more than 2,200
'Wednesday night I was almost in a cold sweat,' the bandleader Rohlfing
recalls. 'By Thursday, when we practiced from 11:15pm until 1:30am, it
sounded pretty good.' Agrees Watt, who said his fingers were bleeding on
the keyboard during the group's performance, 'it was a happening.' (Awww
- still in the 1960s, are we?)
We'll all just have to wait a while to find out if he was right. The
group won't perform again until the next Fleishman company meeting in
three years. 'I like to keep performances infrequent,' he joked. He also
wants to recruit a hot sax player. Anyone thinking about looking for a
job with Fleishman might want to play up that skill on his or her resume
- or just show up at Rohlfing's door carrying a sax case and humming
John Coltrane's A Love Supreme.