#1 Tribute Band Agency on the Planet

Mark Cuban looking to tribute bands and comedians to help establish AXS TV

Its latest show is called 'The World's Greatest Tribute Bands'; 'Gotham Comedy Live' is renewed for a second season
By Tripp Whetsell / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Published: Monday, March 4, 2013, 6:00 AM
Updated: Monday, March 4, 2013, 2:15 PM

AXS TV is a joint venture with Mark Cuban (above), AEG, Ryan Seacrest and CAA.

 Rock on, Mark Cuban!

The star of ABC’s “Shark Tank” is betting on bunch of tribute bands and comedians like Susie Essman, Mario Cantone and Jim Norton to put his fledgling cable network AXS TV on the map.

Cuban says he’d even be open to having his one-time nemesis Donald Trump do a show.

“Except I don’t think he could handle it, even though deep down I really like Donald. He’s like the little brother you love to pick on because he always fires back and that makes it interesting.”

AXS TV has aired live concerts from bands like Linkin Park.

But even sans Donald, the outspoken sports and media mogul thinks his former HDTV network — best known for such risqué fare as “Girls Gone Wild” and rebooted last June in a joint venture between Cuban, concert giant AEG, Ryan Seacrest and Creative Artists Agency — could still have the last laugh.

On Monday night, AXS, which Cuban describes as “basically being geared towards doing as many live televised events as we can,” unveils its latest show — called “The World’s Greatest Tribute Bands.”

Paying homage to such legendary acts as the Beatles, Elton John, Journey and the Rolling Stones, the new series hosted by former TMZ correspondent Katie Daryl will feature 12 weeks of live concerts from the Roxy Theater in West Hollywood.

Cuban says “it’s the perfect hybrid for what we want to do long-term, which is to become the ESPN of live entertainment television, especially when it comes to music.”

 So far towards that end, AXS has aired live concerts by Linkin Park, Aerosmith and Sara Evans in addition to participating in the Global Citizens Festival with the Black Keys.

And in an interesting twist, Cuban is also hoping to continue to lure more comedy fans, having just renewed “Gotham Comedy Live” for a second season.

The show, which is the first on television to ever showcase live and uncensored stand-up, debuted in January and currently airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. live from Manhattan’s Gotham Comedy Club.

“Getting the word out is our biggest (challenge) right now,” Cuban says. “We’re already in about 38 million homes nationwide and what better way to get more people than by giving them a front row seat to the country’s best comedians raw and unedited, which is the way comedy should be.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/mark-cuban-betting-tr...