Greg Epler, Longtime Fuel Manager, Dies at 64

Greg Epler, the veteran music manager and booking agent who worked closely with Fuel, Lisa Simone and others, has died at the age of 64.

Epler began his career in the music business in the late 1980s and found his niche in 1994, with the launch of Greg Epler Management, which he built with an ethos of championing up-and-coming bands.

One of those acts was Fuel, the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania rockers which he co-managed with Dave Sestak at Media Five.

Epler worked with the group since its inception and was instrumental in getting Fuel signed to Epic Records in the 1990s, an alliance that delivered a string of platinum and double platinum recordings. The band has five career appearances on the Billboard 200, including a No. 15 for 2003’s Natural Selection; and a No. 17 peak for 2000’s Something Like Human, which logged 60 weeks on the chart.

Fuel impacted the Billboard Hot 100 with four titles, including a No. 30 for 2000’s “Hemorrhage (In My Hands)”.

“The countless conversations and valuable insights he gave me in the business and also in life always included lots of laughs,” recounts Carl Bell, founder and principal songwriter of Fuel. “He has been a part of the Fuel family and my friend for over 25 plus years and I will sorely miss him. Rest in peace, Greg.”

Original Fuel drummer Kevin Miller adds, “I had conversations on a business and personal level with Greg almost every day of my life for the last 30-plus years.  He is one of my dearest friends, and he was a great manager. He cared and looked out for me/us. The hole in my heart is so big, you could step through it. We had shit to do. I promise you I will press forward. Much love buddy.”

Later, in 2021, Epler partnered with Ben Goldman, the A&R executive who signed Fuel to Epic, to re-launch the band with most of its original, classic line-up including Bell and Miller. The reunited outfit released the LP Anomaly, and supported it with a U.S. tour.

“Working again with Greg, Carl and Kevin on this last Fuel LP was like revisiting with family you haven’t seen in too long,” comments Goldman, partner for Fuel. “I am so glad we had that experience in getting Fuel back in action the way we did. He was a dear friend and I will miss him.”

Epler wasn’t a one-band man. During his career, he worked with the estate of Nina Simone and managed the late artist’s daughter Lisa Simone, he managed Carl Bell’s solo records, Tantric (ILG/WMG), consulted for the band Live (MCA), punk-rock PA band Weston (Go-Kart), Solution A.D. (Atlantic), July For Kings (Geffen), and Bridges and a Bottle.

Epler passed away at St. Luke’s University Hospital in Bethlehem, PA, though the cause of death has not been revealed. He’s survived by his daughter, Sarah Epler and her husband, Charles Goetz.

A private service for family and close friends will be held today (Oct. 12) in PA. In lieu of flowers or other gifts, the family requests donations in his memory go to MusicCares.

Lars Brandle