The Man Behind So What?! Music Festival
With 12+ years under his belt of promoting concerts and festivals with his biggest accomplishment being his flagship So What?! Music Festival, Mike Ziemer has booked and worked with some of the largest bands in the music industry.
In addition to such huge accomplishments Mike also runs an artist management company called Evolve Management and a record label called Third String Records.
We had the pleasure to catch up with Mike and give you a little bit more of an in depth look at the man behind the music, an entrepreneur who brings you THE must see festival that you need to experience at least once but will keep you coming back for more each year.
-Tell us 3 things about you people wouldn't expect
I was adopted from birth. I grew up in Huntington Beach, CA before moving to Texas, and I hate pickles.
-What made you want to be an entrepreneur in the music industry?
Honestly, nothing. It just all happened naturally and I learned as I went and a hobby turned into a job. I never knew this was gonna happen. Never planned it. I was going to be an architect.
-How did you get to where you are now and what was your greatest struggle getting here?
I have no idea. I just worked hard and kept going. Every time we lost money, every time a band I worked with moved on, every time I was told I couldn’t do something, I just kept moving forward and did whatever i needed to do to keep going. It’s been a wild ride. I started this in 2004.
-What was the greatest goal you have achieved thus far in your career?
Putting on a successful multi-day music festival inside of a baseball stadium was never my goal, but I would consider it my greatest achievement.
- Who has been your favorite artist that you have met so far through your line of work?
Dave Grohl was the nicest dude ever.
-What was the weirdest thing you ever encountered at one of your music festival?
I walked into a private bathroom no one was supposed to be in when I was doing shows at the Plano Centre and two people were having sex. I walked in and they ran out.
-What was it like the first time you kicked off your first music festival?
My second show ever was 2 stages and a mini-festival, I don’t think I even realized what I was doing. I was just having fun and booking bands I loved. It grew into something I still don’t understand but I love it.
-What are your goals moving forward?
I would like to continue growing my management company, merge my label with a bigger label, continue doing the IMI Conference, grow the festival in new markets, and also help other small business owners expand their brand and work with them to do cool things.
-What kind of advice do you have for people who want to get into what you do.
You have to be willing to fail, a lot. No one has it easy. You will get stressed, you will lose sleep, you will lose money, you will feel under appreciated, but that's all temporary and its always worth it.