38, concert promoter, Austin
He didn’t invent the outdoor music festival—perhaps you’ve heard of Woodstock?—but he’s as responsible as anyone for its resurgence as a twenty-first- century form, and he’s just now getting started. As one of three principals at Capital Sports and Entertainment, the College Station native and onetime club booker was the driving force behind the creation, in 2002, of the Austin City Limits Music Festival, the touch-it-smell-it- feel-it extension of the venerable TV brand; the can’t-miss September weekend at Zilker Park, in downtown Austin, features more than 120 bands—the likes of Bob Dylan and Coldplay—and draws daily crowds of 70,000 or more, despite weather that can be charitably described as mind-meltingly warm. In 2005 he and his CSE mates took over the languishing Lollapalooza festival and resuscitated it, in Chicago’s Grant Park, by following the ACL fest model. Last year, after Jones became a partner in a music promotion company spun out of CSE called C3 Presents, he helped launch the country-fried Big State Festival, outside College Station. Next up: this August’s Vineland Music Festival, produced alongside a British promoter, on a five- hundred-acre farm in Vineland, New Jersey. The weekend’s expected attendance is 80,000. Rock on.