A quickfire Q&A with: The North East's SSD Concerts' founder and MD
Bdaily caught up with SSD Concerts’ managing director and founder, Steve Davis. Here, catch a sneak peek into the North East’s burgeoning music industry and how the company is continuing to expand.
Hello, Steve. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
“Hey! I’m 38, from North Shields and residing in Gosforth. I have two kids and a fiance!”
Can you describe your role at SSD Concerts and what you have done at the company since beginning?
“I am the managing director at SSD Concerts. I look after mostly the business development and the ideas/brands we currently own and are developing.”
When did you start this position at SSD Concerts and why did you decide to join this company? What were you doing before you joined?
“I started the company eight years ago part-time whilst I followed a completely different career path as a radiographic practitioner at North Tyneside General Hospital!
“This followed hotly on the heels of my glamorous university job as a taxi driver. I have worked in this role [at SSD Concerts] full-time for three years now.”
How has SSD Concerts grown since it began?
“It has grown from a staff of just me for one year to three people for years two to five, and now we have over 40 employees eight years down the line.
“It’s not an easy industry to find your way in, especially since I started when I was 30. I started building contacts from nothing so it’s a great achievement where we are now.
“The industry is very London centric and I’d say we are one of, if not the, fastest growing independent promoters in the country so it’s amazing to see it flourish and remain based in the North East.”
Who has been the most memorable artist you’ve worked with, and who would you love SSD Concerts to work with?
“The most memorable we have worked with is a tough one - there are a lot!
“Ben Howard, 1975, Jake Bugg… I remain fond of [these] as we worked with them in the early days of both theirs and our careers. We have then had the pleasure to promote Noel Gallagher, Elvis Costello, Brian Wilson and some of the legends I grew up listening to!
“We have always looked forward and never stood still so I’d also say Sam Fender is a real exciting prospect right now.
“Although, it’s great having all of these artists from around the world, we’ve never been more excited to have someone from the region with a genuine shot at the big time. He is one of the most talented people we’ve had the pleasure to work with.
“I’d love to work with Liam Gallagher. He has always been the best frontman and one of our icons. Other than that, Paul Mcartney (obviously a dream) is someone I’d love just to meet and talk to!”
I heard that SSD Concerts is expanding its team. What kind of roles will be made available?
“We are always moving forward and adding further events, there are roles in business development, design [to] web design!”
Did SSD Concerts begin with funding or is it more of a business that has grown organically through the years?
“We have grown organically and not had any funding thus far. One day it would be nice as it is a risky business and the events are getting bigger. We have had offers from national companies but want to retain our independence for as long as possible.”
“What are your plans and goals for the rest of this year and beyond with SSD Concerts?“
“We plan to make This is Tomorrow Festival a national brand and keep developing that… That’s our primary focus for the short term.”
Access free online guidance for North East businesses in the Growth Hub North East's COVID-19 toolkit →