We had the good fortune of connecting with Mike Locke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mike, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I left Warner Music Group in June of 2011 to start Silver Side Productions. At WMG I worked in the sync department, initially negotiating deals for advertisements and then acting as liaison between independent labels/artists, the sync department and the music supervision community. I created that role as a result of bringing in some emerging independent labels/artists in the mid 2000’s to represent for film/tv/ad licensing (i.e.: Steve Aoki’s Dim Mak and Bloc Party as they were releasing an EP). I fiercely champion opportunities for independent labels/artists and that passion combined with an entrepreneurial spirit lead to my desire to do more than what I was doing within Warner. Inadvertently, that started the genesis of Silver Side. Independent artists told me on their own volition that they’d work with me even if I left Warner and with some other outside encouragement, I made the leap. I wanted to represent independent artists to the sync community, without certain confines and limits, and ideally create a mutually beneficial environment.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
At its core, I look after music for sync licensing opportunities. Atlas Music Publishing controls some great, vintage catalogs going back to the ‘30s and, has a current roster of talented producers/songwriters/artists who, while independent, have major chops and cuts with major label artists/writers. With Silver Side, we’ve pivoted to focus on producer/artist projects that lean toward sync (but maintain authenticity, artistry and genuineness) and then work on building the story around that project. Our label side has grown, thanks largely to visibility from syncs that have translated to people finding the music and listening.
At the center, I look after music for sync licensing opportunities. With Silver Side, we’ve pivoted to focus on producer/artist projects that lean toward sync (but maintain authenticity, artistry and genuineness) and then work on building the story around that project. Our label side has grown, thanks largely to visibility from syncs that have translated to people finding the music and listening.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Ha, well this has changed since I got married, had kids and now moved from the east side (Echo Park / SIilverlake). I’d show them some beautiful spots more outside of the busier city haunts, i.e.: The Malibu Cafe, Malibu Wine Safari and The Old Place Restaurant (and the adjacent speak-easy wine bar).
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
The obvious here is my parents and my dad in particular for his support and influence seeing him successfully be self-employed. My wife for supporting the time I put into work, her business savvy and much more. Especially in the early days when I started Silver Side, I’d like to thank artists/managers and labels that believed in me (Todd of Greyday Records, The Deadly Syndrome and their manager Drew, Andy from Everloving, Dave from The Shanghai Restoration Project, Pierre De Reeder of Rilo Kiley, Don Gallardo, Latifah Phillips (The Autumn Film) and Dave Wilton (A Boy and His Kite). And, shout out to my business partner Craig O’Neill who jumped in to this in its infancy, believed and continues to as he brings incredible talent (Hidden Citizens, Tim Halperin, Sarah West, Jaxson Gamble, Vo Williams and many more) and grows the business. We compliment each other well and I thank him for creatively evolving our business.