Move over, Michael J. Fox. You may have established the prototype for clean-cut, driven prodigies in the 80s, but Toronto's own Eric Warner is the new and improved 21st-century model.
Seriously, Warner could kick Alex P. Keaton's ass: instead of icky teen GOPism, he found solace in punk and fanzines, throwing all-ages hardcore shows in offbeat venues (anarchist bookstores, youth centres) back in 98 when he was a 15-year-old in Thornhill.
Since then, he's graduated to running his own promotion company and label, booking shows for bands across North America, and putting on the Over The Top fest, now entering its fifth year - one of the best music festivals the city has to offer. That's when he's not tied up with his day job doing A&R and marketing for V2 Records.
The secret of his success? Unlike a lot of event organizers, Warner aggressively pursues bands cuz - gasp! - he really, really likes them.
"The lineup is always super-ecletic, and I want to make sure at least one local band plays every show, cuz if there weren't local bands who are so gung-ho about everything, this city's music scene would be crap."
He's not in it for the cash. In Over The Top's four years, Warner has yet to break even, let alone make a buck. (He claims he made a profit last year if not for hiphop, which he admits he doesn't know how to promote, and one band that shall remain nameless.)
But listen to the combo of giddy excitement and professionalism in his voice when he starts discussing new initiatives for the 2006 version, like this week's launch party, and it's clear the dude revels in what he does.
"It's the half-decade anniversary, and I really think this year is the strongest yet. Devendra Banhart is probably gonna play the pre-party, and I'm hoping to bring Les Savy Fav , Wolf Eyes , Regina Spektor , the Evens .... I'm working on a Silver Jews show at the Opera House , which could be a huge loss, but it'd be worth it.
"This launch party is designed to create more awareness and to let people know Over The Top is here to stay."