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

Hi Michael, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
My business is all about risk. Sometimes our efforts go well and sometimes they don’t. In the music business only 10-20% of releases are considered successful. So it comes down to the question of how do you mitigate that?. My mother has always taught me to ask this one simple question, “what’s the worst that can happen?”. Because most of the time, whatever the consequences might be, are usually not bad. And the rewards are far greater.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
80/20 Records is an independent record label that offers 80% royalties to artists. We offer label, management and coaching services to musicians.  In addition we have a podcast called The 80/20 Show where I host interviewing professionals in the music industry such as Kevin Lyman (Warped Tour), Sam Means (The Format and Hello Merch), Herman Li (DragonForce), and others.

The saying that ignorance is bliss is completely true. If I knew now what it would take to get here it would be overwhelming just to get started. Just after graduating college and having no background in music business I decided to carve my own path after reading two books, one on music law and the other on record label marketing. One major lesson I’ve learned over the years is to be fearless. And what I mean by ‘fearless’ is not being overly concerned about making a fool of myself or devaluing my worth. Overcoming this fear brought me these incredible experiences such as going backstage at Warped Tour (and having two of our artists perform), speaking at major music conferences, and attending the GRAMMYs. I’ve gotten to know so many successful people in the music industry and no matter how far they’ve gone with their careers, one fact always remains. Which is they’ve all started at the same spot you have.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
First would grab food at Cornish Pasty or Wildflower Bread Company. Then catch a show at The Rebel Lounge, Last Exit Live, Crescent Ballroom, or Valley Bar. Definitely miss going to shows!

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to dedicate this shoutout to my parents. I’m beyond lucky to have a mother and a father who have been always supportive. Plus both being successful entrepreneurs I’ve had incredible mentors to guide me through a challenging career in running your own company.

Website: www.8020records.com
Instagram: instagram.com/8020records
Twitter: twitter.com/8020records
Facebook: facebook.com/8020records

Image Credits
Wicked Garden

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