This is Magnetic’s Industry Focus, a series where we highlight those working behind the scenes of the EDM biz. These are the folks running the record labels, representing the artists, promoting the shows and just getting it done.
They may not get the shine of deadmau5 or Kaskade, but they work just as hard making sure the parties are packed, the music is perfect, and that the artists are where they need to be. We’ve decided to focus on the behind the scenes movers and shakers that are helping you move and shake.
Today, we highlight David Grutman, the man behind Miami Marketing Group (MMG). He got his start in nightlife working for Tantra and the Opium Group, only to start the famed Miami nightlife locations LIV and Story (among other clubs world wide). Here are his words:
How did you start your career in the electronic music business?
I started my career in the nightlife/hospitality business many years back. I actually started as a bartender and learned the many different facets of the business to truly understand how to operate a nightclub. There were different trends in music when I started, but at some point at our venues we decided to put a huge emphasis on electronic music because we noticed the format was growing in crazy ways. First and foremost, I was always a fan and so we grew our venues to play host to the biggest names in electronic music on a weekly basis.
What is the best part of the business?
I love being able to be a part of that for many people is a lifetime experience that cannot be forgotten. There are so many memorable nights that happen within our venues. I am always told by guests of LIV and Story that they “had the best time of their life that they will never forget” and it really feels good to help produce those nights & experiences.
What are the biggest challenges?
I don’t really see it too much as a big challenge, but the most important thing is really staying ahead of the curve on trends in music, technology and really knowing the ways to create the most memorable experience every night for our guests at both LIV, Story & LIV at Sun Life.
What career advice would you recommend to someone just starting off?
I would recommend you really start at the bottom and work your way up. Or at least learn all the different positions that it takes to operating the business and master them.
As the EDM industry continues to grow, what do you think the secrets to longevity in this business will be?
I really believe it is all the relationships you foster. Not only with artists and industry peers, but mostly with the consumer.
What cities/regions do you think electronic dance music is best thriving?
Well there are the usual suspects like Miami, New York & LA. Obviously there are the big regions in Europe like Ibiza, London & Paris. However, it is good to know that the music is growing in such a large way that there are scenes and fans all over the US and the world. The shows and big artists aren’t only playing the major metropolis anymore.
If you weren’t in the electronic music biz, what would you be doing?
If I wasn’t in the nightlife/music business I would be in the hotel business. That’s my next career goal and hope to reach it sooner than later.