Mike Walsh - Serenade

Mike Walsh, Head of Strategic Partnerships UK, Serenade

What first led you to working in entertainment?

My mother was a radio presenter on BBC Radio Merseyside, so I sort of grew up in a radio station. I loved music from a very early age so just wanted to be around it. After years of student radio, I joined the promo team at Parlophone Records in 1995. A vintage year.


How long have you been at your company and what's your role?

I consulted for Max Shand (Serenade founder) in late 2020 and have been UK Head of Strategic Partnerships since Sept 2021.


If you didn’t have your job, what do you think you would be doing today?

Watching music documentaries on a loop (my dream downtime).


What do you love most about your job?

I’m very proud of being at the forefront of new technology that will have a huge positive impact on the industry as a whole. In terms of both environmental and economic sustainability – for artists and rights holders of all levels.


What is the biggest challenge the industry is facing today?

I could talk about artists trying to build sustainable businesses from the ground up, or the costs of touring, or opaque royalty systems… or any number of cultural, political and economic challenges. But I feel the biggest challenge for us all is climate change and what the music industry can do to be more sustainable.


Who is your favourite entertainment retailer or service and why?

I think I’ll have to go for Tasty Records in Altrincham. They’re my local record store. It’s always nice to chat to Ben, the owner, and have a ‘human algorithm’ who puts records aside for me.

Which non-entertainment retailer or service do you admire and why?

I have discovered some lovely beers through my Beer52 subscription. It’s a service that delivers beers from different countries to you each month. The beers come from all over the world and the packages also include snacks or magazines etc. Such a cool idea. Also, is the Toucan in Soho count as a retailer?

What was the first ever film, album and game you owned and where did you buy them?

I honestly can’t remember my first album, but the first single I ever got was the 7” of ‘Come Back’ by The Mighty Wah that I bought from my uncle’s record shop in Westport, County Mayo, Ireland when I was 12 years old.


You’re stuck in a lift. Name the album, film, book, game, and person that you would like to have with you..

Ooh what a good question! Right let me have a proper think about this..

Album – The Blue Nile - ‘Hats’

Film – Life Is Beautiful, 1997

Book – The Daily Stoic by Ryan Holiday and Stephen Hanselman

Game – The Legend of Zelda

Person – My wife

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