I believe Chicago breeds a particular type of entrepreneur, especially within the music space, that always tends to operate with a slight chip on the shoulder.
Believe it or not, the perfect Valentine’s Day gift (or for any occasion!) really does exist.
Reflect on a moment of your life, with a loved one, that you’ll cherish forever. Weddings, first dates, the birth of a child, or simply a perfectly imperfect family moment. Imagine that you can take those feelings and turn them into beautiful lyrics of a song that belongs to you. Thanks to Songfinch, that dream can come true!
Songfinch was created to help you bring words to life through songs to show a special person in your life just how special they are. We had the chance to speak with John Williamson, CEO of Songfinch, to dig deeper into what makes him, and the Songfinch team, the best people to beautify any occasion.
What was the inspiration behind Songfinch? What made you take the idea and run with it?
“Members of the founding team and I have been in and out of the music business for the last two decades. For the later part of our run, we played “connector” between artists and brands, having witnessed brands leverage the power of music to tell incredible stories to their customers. At one point, I began thinking about the ability to take that power of storytelling via music and bring it directly to the consumer.
Around that time (a little over 4 years ago), I was the Best Man at my brother’s wedding (Rob Lindquist – a Co-Founder in Songfinch), and had a song created for the occasion from an artist he liked -I guess it was an unknowingly real life test of the concept. I gave a lousy speech, but followed it by playing the song, which was sprinkled with personal stories, inside jokes and a catchy chorus – people were blown away by it. Even though we didn’t officially decide to build out a model and pursue the concept until years later, this is where roots for the idea were planted.
I believe timing to be one, if not the most important factor in the success of a startup – the stars seemed to align middle of last year and we just decided we had to go all in on the concept.”
How do your Chicago roots play a part in your success?
“Chicago has been HOME for me for all 36 years of my life. I believe Chicago breeds a particular type of entrepreneur, especially within the music space, that always tends to operate with a slight chip on the shoulder. Chicago is relentless, non-stop hustle – “NO” just means you’re one step closer to a “YES.” That’s Chicago and that’s 100% me.”
Do you have a go-to song that brings you inspiration?
“I’ll expand a bit on the background behind my favorite songs.
I feel like there’s two kinds of people – people that listen to music for the words and people that listen to for the music. I’ve always been a “words” guy. To me, inspiration depends on the moment…what’s taking place in my life.
I love songs that describe real problems, struggles…just complete honesty gave to me as a listener. Being a serial entrepreneur, I feel like I’ve been on a rollercoaster for all of my adult life so those types of songs make me feel like there’s someone else going through similar situations.
De La Soul’s “Trying People” is probably the most honest record I’ve ever heard (I’m a 90’s hip-hop kid). There’s this newer joint called “Try” by SonReal that gives me a similar feeling – there’s a line where he says “My hydro bill just came in and it’s twice as much as last month / got a couple kids so I’ve been filling up the bathtub” – it’s simple lyrics like that that make music the most powerful form of communication to me.
With Songfinch, we’re making these kinds of songs for people every single day – lyrics that hit the heart and bring memories to life. What could be more inspiring?”
What should our readers know about Songfinch if they’re interested in getting a song created?
“Experiencing what we’re doing firsthand is truly the only way to understand the power and emotion. This isn’t a sales pitch, it’s as honest as I can be.
The process is simple – go to songfinch.com and start by telling us who you want a song for, the occasion and how you want them to feel when they listen. Then open up – tell us personal stories, funny tidbits…just have fun with the story portion of the process. Select a couple other things pertaining to the song i.e. type of vocalist, style, etc.
Pay $200 (we deliver so far beyond this price point it’s unreal), wait 7 days and prepare to experience the “feels” and give one of the most significant, thoughtful, moving gifts you’ve ever given.”
Do you have a favorite Songfinch memory so far?
“It’s all about the people. I love that we’ve formed this small, yet incredibly talented team that rally together day-in and day-out around this mission of bringing people’s stories to life through music. It’s tough to go a week without seeing one of them with headphones on at their desk shedding tears over the latest song that we’re delivering. Grown adults moved to tears over stranger’s stories…it’ll never get old.”
(photo credit for all photos used: Songfinch)