[Interview] Getting In Sync with SYNCSMITH Co-Founder, Gavin Mee

UK-based sync licensing company, SYNCSMITH, only launched last week but they’ve been garnering quite the buzz. Focusing specifically on today’s growing demand for experimental electronic music in the film, television and gaming industries, SYNCSMITH has been backed by some pretty impressive taste-making labels such as Auxiliary, Houndstooth, Diskotopia, Where To Now, Opal Tapes, Moods & Grooves, Power Vacuum, Debacle, Motor, Dement3d, Shipwrec, Nous Disques and Versatile Records – and their roster should only grow from here on out.

We chatted with co-founder Gavin Mee about the backbone of SYNCSMITH, who they’d love to collaborate with and of course, their hopes for the future of the company.

Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions! First, tell us how this whole idea came about. What was the initial spark to light the flame, so to speak?

No worries, you’re welcome! So, the business model is born out of a complex combination of frustrations and opportunities really, the downturn in digital and physical sales coupled with the increasing importance of experimental electronic music in film has led us to evolve the sync concept but offer more avant-garde material.

Electronic music has always been a constant in most action films and in the gaming industry. Over the past few years, we’ve seen that genre come to life in terms of Top 40 with the whole EDM movement. With your focus on the avant-garde side of electronic music, are you hoping to eventually play a major part in that area or is this mainly for the experimental artists who are looking to get their music out there?

Essentially we are here to support our artist and labels, and align their music with exciting and immersive on screen content. There are no plans to play a major part or dominate in any one particular field, our sole focus is to be seen as a trusted provider of exceptional electronica. I think there will always be a selective, sort of self-preservation element as we’re not the sort of people to take on every job, so the application of restraint here and there will hopefully ensure longevity for Syncsmith.

Are there any artists on your radar that you’re hoping to work with in the future with this project?

Personally I’m a big fan of Bill Kouligas’s label PAN and Erased Tapes, so yeah I would love to represent either of those labels and their artists.

Describe the process of attaining backing from all of those taste-making labels you’ve acquired so far. That must have been thrilling!

Yeah it was an exciting process really, we developed a shortlist of labels that we felt had ground-breaking music and a really innovative A&R ethos. It was then just a case of contacting the labels and communicating the vision.

Syncsmith removes the burden from music supervisors, directors and producers. For those who don’t fully know what goes on behind the scenes, or the work it takes to get song placement in TV, film and games, explain how you might be the better option.

So for the uninitiated, it’s not quite as easy as accepting a WAV from an artist and then pitching it into the TV & film world. There is a great deal of effort required sometimes across difficult communication lines to conduct a due diligence aspect on the publishing and master rights. It would be suicide to pitch any material without understanding the potential copyright risks or acquiring the required metadata. We have installed a comprehensive gate processes to ensure all our catalogue presents a very attractive and risk free service for the directors, producers and music supervisors out there.

Overall, what is your main goal with SYNCSMITH. How do you plan to grow in time?

The main goal is to align our artists’ material with the more visually challenging, immersive, art-driven projects. Growth will happen but it’s not something we’re overtly monitoring daily, growth will come as a bi-product of success, so the focus for now has to be relationship driven and forged through 100% commitment to our artists and labels.

Stay up-to-date with SYNCSMITH on Twitter here.

Tina Roumeliotis

Tina Roumeliotis

Tina is the founding editor of The Daily Listening. She's also a professional music nerd for BUZZNET. You'll most likely find her where she finds most of her inspiration: introverting in her bedroom with her music collection and a pair of headphones.