The year is 2015. Conductor and educator Scott Winters has a prototype of some software that has been received very well by a few orchestras and has been called “original and elegant” by the director of the MIT Media Lab. It is clear that developing this software, which began as a hobby, should be made into a real company. But Winters, who has no software development background, needs to find a co-founder who can manage the technology.
A few calls are placed to people across the country. “Who should I ask to help me?” Winters asks. Three people in three different states all recommend the same guy: Dr. J Anthony Allen. After having coffee together at Open Book in downtown Minneapolis, Winters and Allen set off on a quest to build a company together and Ion Concert Media is born.
J has been the trustworthy ‘silent partner’ in this endeavor from the start. You won’t find him on stage running the software or talking with customers on the phone, but make no mistake: J is the technology brains behind the whole company. He has solved serious tech issues minutes before a concert more times than we care to remember and most of the Muséik functions are thanks to his leadership.
J holds Masters Degrees in Composition and Music Technology from the Peabody Institute of Music and a Doctorate in Composition from the University of Minnesota. In his career he maintains roles as professor, entrepreneur, producer and composer, as well as an author and expert in the field of online learning. He holds several positions beyond his work with Ion.
He is a co-founder of Slam Academy, a Minneapolis based center for music production training with campuses in Minneapolis, Denver, Chicago, and Indianapolis. He is also Assistant Professor of Music, Media and Technology at Augsburg University in Minneapolis. He is the author of the book “Music Theory for Electronic Music Producers” and he started a company called Punkademic Courses which produces and licenses online courses.
J says about himself, “I ravenously consume sci-fi novels and will be happy to talk to anyone about the pros and cons of various outlooks of future societies. And I hate olives.”