I just barely got all my research compiled, my assignment done, and just barely got home in time for my interview with Tim Westergren - the founder of Pandora - which, might I say, was fantastic. I'm just worried 'cause it seemed so bloody short? I've got three pages of notes, but it was less than a half hour?
I'm going to want to do a follow-up. He's a ridiculously cool guy. From talking to him, I would never have guessed that he's 40 years old. He looks 30. He sounds 20. Music keeps you young. I agree with him when he says there's a musical revival going on right now. Wow, I'm so bouncy. I can't believe I landed that interview?
He called me after composing on piano. He's composed two film scores. He's won awards for it. He's recorded albums with his band YellowWood Junction. Totally down to earth, extremely modest, all around awesome, personable guy.
Must be that Minnesota nice. Born in Minneapolis, on Excelsior. Small world, innit?
To give you an idea of how cool he is, even when he had to let people go in 2002 after they ran out of money, he hired them back when he landed the deals with AOL and Best Buy. Also, he accepts music from anywhere. You don't have to even be signed. He told me they've recieved cds recorded in a basement and labelled with a post-it note. They'll still listen. I can't get over how beautiful that is. They have CDs from ceiling to floor, and a stage in their office, and since all the music analysts are musicians themselves... every friday they jam.
Most of my story is probably going to be about the partnership between Slim and Pandora and what that'll let consumers do, and about the tour Tim's taking of the South. Can I just iterate that he's a really awesome guy? He's going from Austin to DC, and just kind of wingin' it. Stopping obviously at larger cities like Memphis, etc... checking out the off-broadway clubs, talking to local djs, looking for new music, and meeting with pandora users. He'll be updating the blog during the tour - starting in March - and letting people know when he's in town so they can come meet him and talk to him.
How awesome is that? A radio touring to find original new music, coming to the artist and meeting the people it serves. Beyond fantastic.
I am so thrilled. I have three pages of notes. I'm still little worried that my interview was too short? I didn't have a lot of time to compile a lot of questions, but I have 40 pages of background info, and I am definitely going to do a follow-up and hopefully I'll be able to get ahold of Nolan Gasser, the brilliant mastermind behind cracking the DNA of musical genres. Evidently, he is the one that made Westergren's dream possible. I am a huge fan of Westergren's dream, as everyone that loves music should be.
I'm not going to say anything else here right now... but I'll post the article at some point. If you guys have any questions about it though, feel free to ask.
Heh... he told me to keep in touch. SQUEE! Tim Westergren is my valentine.