Topic: Pivoting from Passion to Business.
Couldn’t make it to Vampr’s Accelerator Session with Grit Sounds back on October 3rd? No problem, we have some key takeaways and the chat transcribed for you so you can re-live the conversation and get all the sage that he dished out! 🍽
- An all around artist means all aspects of your life can bleed into one another to make better art.
- You have to experience stuff, go through hardships and happiness. It’s all a well for creativity.
- Artists need to feel you as the producer have their best interest at heart and that you share the vision for the project.
- Communication is key
- The biggest hurdle can be the networking side of it, which is a big part. Being somewhat shy and an introvert means you need to work out strategies for this. The format of apps like vampr that we’re on right now, is great for introverted people.
Vampr: Daniel, you ready?
Daniel Franzén: Shoot!
Vampr: Thanks so much for joining us, I know it’s the evening where you are, first let’s build a little backstory for the community. Can you tell us a bit about yourself, where you’re from and how you got started in music? Who inspired you, your favorite genre, band(s,) performers, etc?
Daniel Franzén: Well, I started out actually at the age of 9 playing the flute (traverse or silver flute) and did that for a couple years until I discovered drums. Been in a lot of bands throughout the years spanning from jazz to death metal. Did some orchestral stuff as well.
My biggest influences growing up was my teacher, Glenn, at the youth center Lars Ulrich, Mike Portnoy and bands like Sepultura, Queensrÿche, Cradle of Filth but also listened to Britney Spears, The Cranberries and a lot of classical masters. So quite wide ranges genre wise you could say.
Since then I’ve continued being in both live bands and recording bands working with kids, both as a schoolteacher and private. Worked in a couple studios before starting my own business in 2017.
Vampr: That’s an incredible journey, what initially drew you to the industry and made you want to have a career in it?
Daniel Franzén: I started out with mixing and producing stuff for my own enjoyment and that led to friends hearing it and asking me to help them out. Word gets around I guess and I just went with the flow. Once I started on the production and mixing side I realized that’s what I want to do music wise.
Vampr:What kind of music did you start out working? I read in your bio you were a drummer in a band at one point?
Daniel Franzén:Yeah, I did start out as a drummer, still beating them from time to time but am more focused on the prod side now. I’m a metal head at heart and also a big movie geek so I started writing score-sih music with rock influences. I think my background as a metal drummer shines through in many productions.
Vampr:Now that you say that, I can definitely hear it in your music.
Daniel Franzén:I like the dark and dramatic I guess 🙂
Vampr: (we live for the dramatic! Music is about feeling at the end of day anyway.)
As far as figuring out you wanted to work on the production side you figured that out when you went to University or just kind of felt it was the right path for you after a while?
Daniel Franzén: Well educationally I went a long way. First I got a teaching Bachelor at University of Stockholm and then I studied photography, followed by a music production education at another one of the Swedish Universities (Linneus University.)
No Matter what I’ve done in life I’ve always felt the pull toward music and being creative.
Vampr:Whoa!! So you’re just an all around artist, that’s next level because that means all aspects of your life can sort of just bleed into one another to make better art.
Daniel Franzén: Yes, inspiration can be found in all aspects of life, right. You have to experience stuff, go through hardships and happiness. It’s all a well for creativity.
Vampr: So now let’s jump into how you pivoted from musician to business? You have your own studio where you’re the lead engineer, correct?
Daniel Franzén: I have my own studio named Grit Sounds where I’m the only engineer. I sometimes work in other peoples places, I may spot in for the artist. For it’s been a long time project to go from hobbyist to professional. It does take time to build a network and discography, but you just have to be resilient.
Vampr: As far as being a business owner. It can be tricky right? Because you’re helping people see their vision in the music right? How do you manage artists in that sense?
Daniel Franzén: It’s tricky sometimes. I’m providing a service so artists need to feel I have their best interest at heart and that we share the vision for the project.
It’s all about the artist and their music. My job is to make their vision come alive and in that there’s no room for ego. I strive to be a person who’s easy to work with and a good company to be around. Communication is key and even though it’s the most not humble ting to say I think I’m pretty humble 😉
To answer the question though, not really. It’s about dealing with a potential problem or issue before it comes one and for that you need to be observant and open-minded, and humble 😉
Vampr: So being a good people reader is also a good trait to have in your aspect of the industry. Got it! Nah, that’s really interesting tho, being able to see the potential problems and outcomes before they come such. Very visionary of you.
Daniel Franzén: I don’t know what that 🙃 But it’s important to make sure people that you’re collaborating with trust you and feel comfortable around you.
Vampr:Now when it comes to gaining clients do you do much marketing or are most of your clients repeat or word of mouth?
Daniel Franzén: Haven’t really done that much marketing. Maybe I should. Did some Facebook ads and stuff but it really didn’t do that much. I get 90% of my work from word of mouth. Also I do find artists on here, Vampr is a really good place to start…and stay.
Vampr: Interesting, that’s another reason to just be humble and in a case like yours it seems your work does just speak for itself. That’s been a running theme in the last few of these is the artists we’ve spoken with just are naturally humble, giving, people who aren’t trying to step on others to make it to the top.
Daniel Franzén: Ya, it’s really important. It’s a small world as well so you want to be known to be a sympathetic person for sure.
Vampr: I wanted to ask a little more about your business. Can you tell us some of the hurdles you faced along the way, like when you were building your client base how hard was it?
Daniel Franzén: For me the biggest hurdle was the networking side of it, which is a big part. Being somewhat shy and an introvert I needed to work out strategies for this. The format of these kinds of apps that we’re on right now, is great for people like me 😊 I think too try and see opportunities in every situation and act on it. It’s a big strength and also how you are around people, it’s all about relationships.
The competition for sure [was a hurdle] Nowadays, making music and having a complete studio in your bedroom is made possible for just about anyone, which is great and awesome. It does, however, make the competition harder, I believe. At least in some ways.
Oh, I sounded old there but I believe this is how it is and there are a lot of good things coming with it too.
Vampr:OH, FOR SURE! The level of music being made from people’s closets these days is next level – it definitely feels like we’re living in an entrepreneurial time.
Daniel Franzén: Absolutely and there’s so much to choose from which makes what we talked about earlier so much more important. The music you create or are a part of creating must come from a genuine place of emotion and be inspired not to drown in the noise of everything else.
Vampr: All that being said – if you have any other pearls of wisdom you’d like to share we’d love to hear them, but I’m about out of questions and we’re almost hitting that hour mark we can open the floor back up if anyone else has questions.
Also please plug your website and any new music you’re on or have recently released 👏
Daniel Franzén: My website is gritsounds.se and on the there I have links to my playlist at Spotify, Apple Music and YouTube. And a list on Soundcloud for some metal stuff.
I’ve been working for quite some time with an artist named STRNGS that is awesome. Another one named Jimmy Hazelwood. Check both out!
Vampr: Do you want to tell the people some of the services you offer as well? Just so they can reference it here?
Daniel Franzén: Yeah! Well I do mixing which is my main thing. I can also help with production. I’m not a songwriter though. Or I can’t find the time for it really.
Vampr: Good mixers are hard to find!! So EVERYONE should hit you up for it, it’s a highly taken for granted skill. I think that’s a great spot to leave it! You’re a legend Daniel! Thank you so much for taking the time today ✨✨✨
Daniel Franzén: @Vampr Thank you and to all of you guys who joined us ✨✨ big ups.
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