That Was an Accident . . . with Martin Atkins

That Was an Accident . . . with Martin Atkins

Martin Atkins

Question: How do you decide what adventures to take in your nonlinear career?  What are intentional plans vs. accidents?

Guest: Martin Atkins, Music Industries Coordinator, Millikin University; producer, drummer, documentary filmmaker, DJ, and teacher

Photo: Kara Hammond and NARAS

Martin Atkins talked with our host, Gigi Johnson, from his studio that also acts as a museum of all of the adventurous projects around his career.  Martin shared how he began drumming at age 9 and persistently getting into Public Image Ltd, waiting through 5 drummers.  He talked about believing early on that he had a job -- "it's being me."  He diversified by accident and kept adding roles as blockages came his way, including launching bands and labels.  Each time, he picked the best option that arose and looked for both safety nets and for solutions IN the problem itself.

Our Guest

Martin Atkins is the definition of entrepreneurial activity in cultural arts endeavors, his 35+ years in the music business spans across genres, borders, and industries.

He was a member of Public Image Ltd and Killing Joke. He founded industrial supergroup Pigface, The Damage Manual, and Murder Inc., and has contributed to Nine Inch Nails (for which he has a Grammy) and Ministry. He is the owner of Invisible Records and Mattress Factory Recording Studios (est. 1988). He is the author of "Tour:Smart, Welcome To The Music Business….You’re F*cked!” and "Band:Smart."  He is the Music Industries Coordinator at Millikin University in Decatur Illinois. Martin is a producer, drummer, documentary filmmaker, DJ, and father of four.

Whatever the future of entrepreneurial music business education is, you can pretty much bet that he’ll be in the middle of it.

Mentioned Links:

A Very Human Culture . . . with David Hernandez

A Very Human Culture . . . with David Hernandez

David Hernandez

Question: What if you could build a company around your passions?

In this episode, David Hernandez shares how he is unlearning and relearning what he knows to create competition for his company . . . in his own company!  He runs Colonize Media, a multiplatform network music aggregator.  He has worked to create “a very human culture” with his team of 30+ people and now works to “break artists from nothing.”

Guest: David Hernandez, CEO, Colonize Media

David Hernandez is the CEO and co-founder of Colonize Media, a digital content distribution service created in 2015. Originally from Jalisco, Mexico, David Hernandez grew up in a family of performers and entertainers. David Hernandez has applied his love and passion for the music and entertainment industry to Colonize Media, which was first founded to help increase traction for Latin artists and their content. Colonize Media now serves over 10,000 independent artists and record labels across all genres with 600,000 tracks and videos and 3,000,000,000 monthly streams.

Colonize Media’s goal is to aid in maximizing creators’ content, through marketing, advertising, and promotions. Colonize Media also helps artists to develop content strategies by analyzing digital data to better understand the music community as a whole, including listener demographics and listening trends. By helping clients reach a larger audience and generate more revenue, Colonize Media helps artists keep creating content they love.


  • David Hernandez -
  • Colonize Media -
  • The Book Gigi Mentioned: “Overcoming Underearning” by Barbara Stanny