We had the good fortune of connecting with Sarah Schriner and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sarah, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I have always been drawn to creative pursuits, specifically in music. I began singing (constantly, and at times to my parents’ chagrin) from a very young age. I remember as a child having to make a choice between swimming and taking piano and guitar lessons, and jumping at the chance to touch something musical. I had a Yamaha keyboard my parents bought so that I could practice at home. It seemed HUGE to me then, as a little elementary school girl. That keyboard travelled with me my entire life – and it travelled often, because I was an army brat. Music was the one thing I felt I could always take with me from place to place – something that I always had for myself, and something that I could always turn to, especially when feeling lost or alone in a new setting.

At first, pursuing a career in music didn’t appear to be a viable option. Though I had lived in many places and met all kinds of people, I had never been exposed to what a life in music could really look like, apart from being a teacher or a performer. But in my college search, I stumbled across music industry and music business programs. I lit up – it was exactly what I wanted, a way to support myself and establish a career, while simultaneously getting to dig into the one thing I loved most. Once I made this discovery, it was like the choice had been made for me. Not only was working in what I loved possible, but it was what I had to do.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
The day after my college graduation, I drove cross-country to Los Angeles for an unpaid internship at an independent music publisher. There were several factors that were still up in the air, including a place to live, money, and connections (not to mention that I had never stepped foot in LA before I made the journey out). I primarily lived off my savings from a collection of part-time college gigs, bouncing from 2-month sublet to 2-month sublet.

Three years later, and in my first professional role, I have worked my way up from intern to management. I am now a Creative Manager, overseeing A&R, music licensing, artist & client services, custom music creation, and more.
Each artist or client I’ve interacted with, project I’ve undertaken, and peer or supervisor that I’ve worked alongside have provided me the opportunity to learn something new. I’ve been challenged in a variety of ways, and as a result, have grown tremendously in the process, both creatively and professionally. Things that would have terrified me just a year ago have become a regular part of what I do – and are now some of my absolute favorite parts of the job.
My biggest take away from my experience thus far is that risk is necessary. Without taking that first leap and getting myself where I needed to be and when, even when things weren’t perfect, my life would look very different than it does today. Risk is often accompanied by missteps and failures, and it has been for me at times. But with those mistakes, I’ve not only learned some of my most worthwhile lessons, but also how to take them in stride and keep moving forward. There is no perfect path to success – and success is subjective. All you can do is keep learning and refining as you go.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Each teacher I’ve had in the arts, no matter at what age, contributed to my life. Even the teachers that I did not connect with or thoroughly disagreed with gave me the opportunity to work through differences of opinion, and to stand up for myself and what I wanted to express. I had a plethora of teachers who pushed me positively, helped me discover where I could shine, and illuminated what was possible. I owe all the thanks in the world to them, whether they were private instructors, my high school choir director, or my college professors, both on the creative and the business sides. My shoutout goes to them.

Website: https://www.heavyhittersmusic.com/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sarah-schriner-3b5672b2/

Image Credits
Jessica Vaughn Photo Booth Service Guild of Music Supervisors Adam Della Maggoria

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