& The Beat Goes On | Music Hack Winners

On any given night in Atlanta you can find a packed show with incredible talent on stage. The city boasts prominent recording labels such as Jermaine Dupri’s So So Def Recordings, Matt Goldman’s Glow In The Dark Studios, as well as countless concert venues.

September 5th kicked off Music Hack ATL, Atlanta’s very first Music Hackathon where music enthusiasts set out to find a solution for venue owners, fans, musicians, independent bookers, talent scouts, and others who are a part of the vast music economy. Developers, designers, and creative thinkers pitched their ideas Friday night and hacked the weekend away until the Sunday demo competition.

 The winning team is continuing to work on the project, so for now mum is the word. Get to know the winning team’s members below & stay tuned to follow the project’s progress. 

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Juliett Rowe
What is your day job?
Marketing and promotions at Blood Drunk Records (an indie label here in Atlanta).

What startup/tech projects have you worked on?
I consider the record label a bootstrapped startup. Nothing formal until Music Hack Atlanta, which was one of the most creative and fun experiences that I have been a part of.

What are your best technical or creative skills?
I love coming up with new ideas. I like to think about the whole process, and then diving into the details to make the project a fun and worthwhile experience. I also get excited about about great branding and building a fun community for our fans.

Why the interest in startups?
I like the idea of disrupting an outdated model, or thinking of new ways to do things. I also like the thought of taking a new and exciting idea and making it a real thing. Music and tech is where I feel most creative and I love it when the two come together. I am also making it my mission to remind the more tech oriented people that music is not just content or one’s and zero’s, but someone’s heart and soul.

Geoff Nagel
What is your day job?
Run US sales, marketing and product management for software company (SintecMedia) focusing on the media and entertainment industry

What startup/tech projects have you worked on? 
Was an early employee of EzGov, an Atlanta start-up that focused on e-government portals and payment solutions. There from 1999 to 2005, when it was sold to Choicepoint.

What are your best technical or creative skills?
Solutions architect – Intuitive, wide-ranging knowledge of technology and software development helps me design & deliver solid technology solutions to market problems;
Product management – I’m good at uncovering and understanding the customer’s needs, crafting technology (or other) solutions that meet those needs and finding the business model to make money.
Marketing – Bringing products to market, communicating creatively and persuasively with the customer

Why the interest in startups? 
I’ve always loved building things from scratch, having to adapt on-the-fly and sculpt creative solutions that work. Music and technology have been passions of mine since I was 10 years old when I started playing the drums and programming my TRS-80. Building a business that combined music and technology would be a dream come true.

Julian Knight
What is your day job?
I’m an EE undergrad at GT and a rep for the Startup Exchange.

What startup/tech projects have you worked on?
This summer I interned with GetNotes (now SecondNature) as they went through Flashpoint.
Currently I work for TechJect (in the Builtmore) coding and designing embedded control boards for micro-UAVs like the Robot Dragonfly. I’ve also been involved in a number of “pre-startup” projects (mostly hackathon projects) that fizzled out.

What are your best technical or creative skills?
I play bass guitar and more recently string bass, although neither particularly very well. But it is nice to have a creative outlet, and playing casually is a great stress reducer. There is a strong correlation between music ability and analytical thinking. Every musician should learn to code, every coder should learn to play an instrument. On that note, the ASO has beginner string group classes for adults which are affordable and a lot of fun.

Why the interest in startups?
I love to take things apart and see how they work (literally and figuratively). The fastest way to learn is to get your hands dirty. That kind of Do-It-Yourself mentality is ripe in indie and punk music, but it is also ripe in the startup space, both tech and otherwise. Startups solve problems the quick and dirty way, and I find the pace and the risk thrilling. Also I have no attention span.

Eric Levitan
What is your day job?
I am the COO of a software company for the TV industry called SintecMedia.

What startup/tech projects have you worked on?
I helped build a company called Argo Systems that we sold to SintecMedia at the end of 2012.

What are your best technical or creative skills?
I play guitar in a band as a hobby (with Geoff Nagel) and am passionate about it. I enjoy writing and performing.

Why the interest in startups?
After helping build a company (Argo Systems), I can’t wait to do it again. The satisfaction of building something from scratch and being my own boss and determining the best way to do things is extremely satisfying.

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