We had the good fortune of connecting with Brent Crowe and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brent, what is the most important factor behind your success?
One of the biggest things that works really well for me in my relationships with my artists is detailed communication. In the music industry there’s never a specific “right” way to produce a song. I always say you could take the same song to five different producers and get five completely different versions of the song. Each producer would believe that their version is the best, and each producer would have done what was “right” in their mind. The artist could have a completely different vision than any of these five, and without detailed communication chances are the producer is going to deliver something very different than what the artist is looking for. Getting the producer and the artist on the same page about the direction we’re taking a song is key in the success of the song and delivering a product that the artist is happy with. It also helps to define expectations so both sides know exactly what’s going on through the whole process. It might take an extra 10-15 minutes early on in the process of a song to lay out some specifics in an email or make a phone call, whereas a miscommunication can lead to many hours of extra work later on to bring both sides back on the same page, or worse, a subpar finished product and a disappointed artist that never returns. I’ve learned that communicating well, and adapting the way that I communicate from one artist to the next is extremely important in developing and maintaining quality working relationships with my artists, and also in delivering a finished product that’s right in line with what they hired me to provide.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I’ve always been a musical person, from as early as I can remember. I pursued the dream of performing for a long time, but being the “behind the scenes” guy always seemed to be a better fit. I always loved the art of production, creation, and finding a way to get all the moving parts of a song working together as a team. I started BackBeat Sound Design in April of 2015 as a small studio where singer-songwriters could record their music with a minimal budget. It wasn’t easy, but lots of hard work and commitment to continually improving my craft have led me 5+ years later to being a high quality studio where artists or bands of any caliber at any point in their musical journey can come to have a great experience bringing their music from the idea stage to the world’s ears. I’ve learned a lot about the importance of quality working relationships with artists, communication, setting my pride aside, striving for pleasing the customer over striving for success and recognition, and so much more! When something doesn’t work as planned or anticipated, I’ve learned to work harder to course correct, and work harder to prevent the same situation from happening again. Owning a business is a journey that is constantly evolving. If you’re not adapting and learning every step of the way, then chances are you’re going to burn out and your business is going to struggle.
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.
I’m located in Chattanooga, which is a town full of tourist attractions. The classics are Rock City, Ruby Falls, the Chattanooga Choo Choo, and the countless outdoor/hiking/climbing spots all over the area. Those things are all great, and they’d probably have to be on the list for anyone coming to Chattanooga for the first time. But I am a food person, and we have some great food here. For an incredibly unique breakfast, hit Aretha Frankenstein’s where the pancakes are absolutely the best and so thick it’s laughable. Other breakfast slam dunks are Bluegrass Grill, Daily Ration, and Ruby Sunshine. For the best BBQ in town, find Charlie’s. The best burger is at Main Street Meats. The best pizza lives at Steverino’s. And don’t forget dessert! Giant cakes, pies, and cheesecakes at City Cafe Diner, gourmet donuts at Julie Darling’s, gelato at Milk & Honey, and ice cream at Clumpies.
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?
The biggest shoutout I have is no doubt for my wife, Liz. She has been super supportive every step of the way since I started this business 5 1/2 years ago. Without her encouragement, I don’t think BackBeat Sound Design ever would have started, and it definitely wouldn’t have grown to the level that it is today. She has sacrificed countless hours helping to grow the business and is always willing to help with anything that I need. In addition to my wife, a shoutout to a number of close friends who have selflessly given their time and talents to helping transform BackBeat into something bigger and better in 2020. Thanks so much to all of you!