Get to Know Howard Hertz

Howard Hertz formed the law firm of Hertz Schram PC with Bradley Schram in 1979. He specializes in entertainment law and is the lead attorney for Hertz Schram's Entertainment Practice Group.

Since 1976, Hertz has represented numerous artists and entities in the entertainment field, including authors, screenwriters, recording artists, radio personalities, producers, production companies, record labels, agents, artist managers, music publishers, songwriters, and athletes.

Services provided to entertainment clients range from contract negotiation and litigation to entity formation and estate/tax planning.

Hertz graduated from Wayne State University in 1972 with distinction and received his law degree from Wayne State University in 1976, where he graduated cum laude. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Michigan Law School, teaching a course in entertainment law.

Among others, his most well-known clients have been George Clinton, Sippie Wallace, The Romantics, The Bass Brothers, Eminem, Marilyn Manson, Jack White, Rodriguez (Searching for Sugarman), Pantera, The GO, Marcus Belgrave, Mike Posner, Elmore Leonard, Insane Clown Posse, Battlecross, Jeff Gutt (X-Factor finalist), Jena Irene (American Idol finalist), Original 1265 Recordings, the Marshall Mathers Foundation, Warner Tamerlane, and Atlantic Records.

Hertz also serves as local counsel to Los Angeles, New York and Nashville firms, as well as a mediator, arbitrator and expert witness regularly in entertainment related disputes.

Hertz travels to SXSW in Austin, Texas and to MIDEM, the International Music Festival in Cannes, France, annually, on behalf of his clients.

Hertz has participated on panels and lectured on various entertainment-related topics for conferences, organizations and schools. Among the many organizations and honors to his credit, Hertz is a member of the board of directors and president of the Detroit Music Awards, chairman of the Detroit Music Foundation, a member of the International Association of Entertainment Lawyers, and the 2004 recipient of the John Hensel Award for significant contributions to the arts community.

He is also recognized by “Best Lawyers in America” and “Super Lawyers” annually and was the subject of a feature in “Super Lawyers.”

By Jo Mathis
Legal News

Residence: Farmington Hills.

Favorite local hangouts: Selden Standard and Vicente’s for food. The Majestic complex, Bakers, Hart Plaza for Movement and Jazz Fest and numerous other local venues are where I go for music.

What is your most treasured material possession?
I don’t play them often enough, but my three vintage acoustic guitars.

What was always written on your grade school report card?
“Too much talk.”

When you were considering law school, what was Plan B? Plan B was psychology grad school to become a child psychologist. Two of my psychology field study professors convinced me to stick with law school but join the Juvenile Defender Office and represent kids in delinquency and abuse cases, which I did for two years during law school and two years after.

Do you prefer email, text, or a phone call?
My real preference is in-person dialogue. I feel both parties get so much more out of a personal exchange.

What were you doing in your last selfie?
Appearing on my friend Chuck Bennett’s radio show “Chuck’s Closet.”

What are the most awe-inspiring places you’ve been?
Bali, Indonesia and East Africa are among many fantastic places around the world I’ve been. My wife Wendy and I love world adventure travel.

What is something most people don't know about you?
When I was 20 I hitchhiked to New York, bought a one-way ticket on a chanter flight to England, bought a motorcycle and traveled for 6 months through Europe, North Africa and Israel.

Celebrities have the reputation for being self-important divas. You've worked with hundreds of entertainers. Do you agree?
It’s often said that celebrities are divas or have huge egos. My experience has been that most entertainment clients I’ve worked with have been hard-working, talented people that, when off stage, off camera, etc. are down to earth and looking to me for solid legal and business advise to help guide their careers. Of course, there are always some, as in any walk of life, that think the world revolves around them. In dealing with any major stars there is typically pressure and stress, but with good reason as the stakes are often high.

Did any of your well-known clients surprise you in any way?  I am never surprised by the actions of my clients and potential clients, but I must say that something new and interesting pops up every day. Never a dull moment.

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