Jonathan's Open Road

  • INTERVIEWED BY:

    Destination Unknown

  • INTERVIEW LOCATION:

    Seattle, WA

  • AIRED ON:

    Public Television: Season 1

  • ON DVD:

JONATHAN PONEMAN

Co-Founder
Sub Pop Records

“At the end of the day, you're going to live and die, succeed and fail by your wits. And I think the important thing is to have the courage of your convictions and to have a sense of humor.”

INTERESTS:

Entrepreneurship Music

THEMES DISCUSSED:

Failure Family Fear Goals Money & Financial Security Passion Risk Struggle Success Individualism

FOUNDATION:

Accomplishing Goals

TAGS:

accountant, business, coordination, courage, evaluation, finance, happiness, indie underground, living at home, moving home, necessity, Nirvana, odd jobs, performing, records, rock n roll, security, sense of humor, wits

BIOGRAPHY:

  • As a kid, he says he was not very coordinated, wasn't good at sports, but found guitar and rock and roll to be a saving grace.
  • Played with several bands, wanted to be a pop star; eventually, he accepted that that dream wasn't going to work out.
  • Says it's important to realize that, "if you fail, that's just a chapter in your story; it's not the story in and of itself."
  • After that, he got into radio; started to realize he also enjoyed the business side of music.
  • Decided he would do one successful thing in music, then he'd probably get a conventional job.
  • Went into business with his friend Bruce Pavitt developing Sub Pop Records.
  • They never imagined how huge the label would get-thought Nirvana would sell maybe 200,000 records, not ten million records.
  • Says if you stop thinking of happiness and passion as "options" and start thinking of them as "necessary," you'll take steps to creating a fulfilling life.

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