Grayson Music Group represents a multitude of music-focused companies, including Grayson Music, SNGL, The Wilders, and The Music Assembly. Founded in a culture of collaboration, our award-winning teams work with hundreds of agencies, brands, and networks with a mission to elevate content through music and sound. At its core, Grayson Music Group is creating harmony between people and brands through the power of music.
Tell us about yourself?
I was raised in a very entrepreneurial environment and, from an early age, felt strongly about finding a career where I would have the opportunity to build something. Early in my career, I explored positions in the corporate world and the idea of pursuing an MBA. However, I couldn’t deny the strong pull to the creative world and the business surrounding it. In 1999, I was riding the tube in London on my way home from an interview at a large management consulting firm, and it was like a switch flipped. I booked a flight home (to Toronto) the next day, and the following week was working as a production assistant on commercial film sets. I had found my people! From there, I worked my way through many positions in production, finally landing at Grayson Music – founded by my partners Tom Westin and Dave Sorbara in 1997 – in 2009. From day one, I was astounded by the wildly creative music and audio talent at Grayson and understood just how expansive the scope of business opportunities could be. It has been a challenging and incredibly rewarding ride building the business alongside my partners. Grayson is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, and yet it feels like we are just getting started!
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Trust your gut. Everything is moving the way it should.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
We believe in the power of music to communicate and connect. Our ever-shifting riddle to solve is how to make music that matters to people. We work with brands, agencies, and networks to elevate their branded and visual content and to evoke emotion through music and sound. We’re inspired by the belief that music, when done well, will always leave a lasting impression.
What is your magic sauce?
Our people. Our culture and community at Grayson are founded on collaboration and mentorship. We are a team, and we all love what we do. We share a passion for music and strive together to create work that feels innovative and unique. This shared passion permeates our culture, our output, and our relationships with our network of creators and clients.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
What is the vision?
We are at an interesting time in our growth; we are rapidly scaling but deeply committed to staying true to our key values of craft and artistic integrity. As our teams continue to grow and spread out across the globe, I’m focused on scaling our finely tuned creative process, investing in mentorship, and maintaining consistency in the quality of both our creative output and our services across our divisions and satellite offices. Most importantly, I’m focused on growing and leveraging our sync and distribution opportunities for a more diverse group of artists, composers, and producers. In a world where 10,000-plus tracks are being uploaded to Spotify daily, we are working hard to uphold the value of music while promoting wider access to revenue streams for both emerging and established artists. We want to give them the opportunity to build successful careers doing what they love – making music.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
Most recently – mentorship. With the move to remote work and with the expansion and relocation of the team to different parts of the world, we’ve had to rethink how we invest in, build and support emerging talent. Technology has helped, but you can’t replace time together in the studio listening, playing and writing together. Peer review is an essential part of our creative process, and we have a team of very experienced producers and music directors who have a wealth of knowledge to pass along to the next generation of creators. We have studios in several cities and encourage our team and collaborators to come in and work together as much as possible.
What has made you have to change course? What issues have you run into?
There are issues daily! That’s part of running a business in a constantly evolving marketplace, not to mention ongoing technological innovation and economic instability. The key is to have a clear mission and strategic plan and stick to it. Know who you are and know your value. It’s important to recognize that the path to achieving your mission may be one way one day and another the next. Embracing iteration, risk, trying and failing, and not knowing what the future holds is how I start every day. Success comes from hard work. Being passionate about that hard work and loving what you do is my definition of success. It’s here and now. If you start there, there is nowhere to go but onwards and upwards.
How can people get involved?
Please visit us at: www.graysonmusicgroup.com