Music production company Signature Tracks, which provides custom tracks for a multitude of media, is proving that even during the pandemic, business is booming. That’s all thanks to the fact that people always want to listen to music, and the now renowned music library has tapped into it all with increased ingenuity. We recently reconnected with BMI affiliate Adam Malka about his success as a hybrid composer and music supervisor of the 14-year-old company he co-founded. Here’s what he had to say.
Signature Tracks has grown tremendously since we spoke with you back in 2018. What do you attribute to that success?
Thank you so much! We partnered with Downtown Music Group and now with Concord, which has assisted us tremendously on our administration as well as overall growth initiatives for Signature Tracks. This deal leveled up our game as well as tightened up our team and goals and have incentivized us to really go after growth…consequently, we grew 40% last year in royalties. In addition, there is so much content being created for streaming on demand which is also in conjunction with cable airings that has attributed to many more new series that we are working on…we have been a part of over 20,000 episodes to date since our inception 14 years ago.
Tell us a bit about the projects you’ve taken on and how they differ from each other from a musical perspective.
I have overseen the rebrand of Housewives of Miami along with creative for Housewives of Salt Lake, which have been fun series to work on creatively, merging thematic sounds with our brand of super fresh hot top 40 beats. We have also brought in some new production composing teams that really match our brand of bringing current top 40 radio to TV. Iron Chef on Netflix has been another fun project to work on sounds for, carefully merging a branded series into 2022. I absolutely love working on Red Table Talk, as well as projects with Will Smith’s production company Westbrook - this is special to us as each of us co-founders are from Philadelphia. People may not know this, but Kobe Bryant is part of our inception story as well as initially introducing my partner to Jay-Z, which lead to commercial success and bolstered our reputation in the industry.
In our last interview, we asked what advice you would give to an aspiring songwriter/producer and you said it was important to find a way to infuse really fresh sounds into the work. What advice would you give now?
Ooof, this is a great question - right now I would say this industry is really saturated. I would say really study the sounds and perfect your craft as a composer before stepping up to a reputable music production house like Signature Tracks. We receive so many submissions and it’s very tight to get on our roster, so composers have to make sure their sounds are very seasoned and fresh before submitting. Also, be prepared to pick one lane, one niche that someone is passionate about, and perfect that. For example, if a composer is really into melodic ethereal sounds, stick with that and find a way to stand out for that rather than trying to cover every lane and every genre. Look at how Labrinth has branded his sound for Euphoria. Last bit of advice would be that this is a marathon not a sprint - be prepared to put in 5 to 10 years to achieve financial success as a composer. Nothing is overnight, so build the foundation brick by brick with hard work and focus on developing solid relationships with people in the industry who will champion you. Last note, have a praying Mom, lollll, for real!
What’s the secret to a successful collaboration?
Successful collaboration is really knowing that the greater of the parts happens in collaboration. We have sounds we would never be able to achieve without bringing in the best of each composer’s talents in the specific lane they’re best in.
How do you juggle your roles as a composer and music supervisor? How do they overlap?
Oh, it’s busy, busy daily and I love what I do so I can’t stop doing what I love. There’s a lot of juggling, but I delegate a lot now to people I trust who work for us. I also have an excellent righthand assist, Paul Joshu, who is a jack of all trades. Also, huge and continued shout-out to our newly promoted Vice President Jaime, who is an absolute beast with the hardest work ethic in the game.
What’s up next for you?
I see us continuing to broaden and go deeper on our sounds on all networks, as well as streaming platforms. We have discussed starting a product to rival Epidemic Sound and we may also consult and partner with new publishers coming up. I see us continuing to build upon our partnership now with Concord, as well as building up our revenues strongly in the next 5 years.