We had the good fortune of connecting with Erik Jourgensen and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Erik, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I had spent my high school and college years creating music for fun by myself and with my friends, and making music was something that made me feel engaged and motivated to improve without any external force pushing me or any goal guiding my decisions. Music has so many intricacies like theory, practicing an instrument, new technologies and I knew that if I could make a living from it then I could probably always keep learning, stay engaged with what I did everyday, and work with other cool people that were similarly interested in these things. I also liked the idea of taking my own path and trusting that I could find a way to consistently get work.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am most proud of working with session musicians on my soundtracks and in my own music. I love synthesizers, computers, drum machines, and the era we live in of the home studio, but any musical idea I come up with will be better played by a trained musician. On one hand there are instruments that are being forgotten in popular American music – the xylophone, bassoon, slide guitar – these get relegated to certain genres or time periods. And the other thing is that there are thousands of students in America alone who have studied their single instrument for ten to fifteen years. There is so much potential for new music that utilizes this talent, but the solitary way that we often make music ignores this incredible potential. I come from the modern way of creating music on a computer by yourself, and learning to write music for another person to perform has been very exciting over the past few years.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would go to the Griffith Observatory – this is my favorite spot in Los Angeles. Then I would go to the Red Lion in Silver Lake for schnitzel and beer. For breakfast the next day I’d get the breakfast sandwich at the Oaks Gourmet and then I’d drive to Sierra Madre to hike the Mt Wilson Trail.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My wife, Bree. I started my business when we were first dating. She was a PHD student, and even though I knew I wanted to make a living as a musician, I really had no idea where to get started. She is very organized and motivated to do her best – she’s a great cook, mentor to students, teacher, etc. The first year that we lived together, I started to make a list every morning of what I needed to do to get closer to my goals. I knew that she would eventually achieve her dream of being a professor. and this motivated me to treat the thing that I loved with more focus.
Cover art by Tyler Scully.