As part of my series about the leadership lessons of accomplished business leaders, I had the pleasure of interviewing Andrea Abbondanza. Andrea is a music lover and a drummer, living in Melbourne (AUS). He is passionate about organizing live music shows, connects with people and going to live gigs. He is the co-founder and ideator of LiveTrigger, the most advanced live music community on the planet.
Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us the story about what brought you to this specific career path?
Ialways loved music. When I was 14 years old, my parents bought a drum set for my sister, and I started to use it a lot. With some friends, we started my first band, called Hermano and the Marines, when I was 16. That’s when I began to play shows in Milan and the North of Italy. When I was 18 years old I started to play with Seditius, we recorded a few albums, and we toured most of Europe, having a lot of fun, making a lot of friends and playing a lot of shows, from London to Berlin to Athens. When we were touring, we met a lot of people and had heaps of fun 🙂 The personal connections and deep friendships born in that period are still super strong, and I miss all my friends from the punk rock community in Europe, now that I live in Melbourne.
Once in a tour with my best mate and Seditius’ singer, Gio we were talking how hard is to book shows, especially for independent musicians, and I had the idea to create a sort of CouchSurfing for bands, and that’s when we started to conceptualise LiveTrigger. Since then we put a lot of work in the project, and we are now at the 3rd version of the platform.
LiveTrigger is present in 59 nations, with the most substantial presence in the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, South Africa and Europe, especially Italy, where we are from.
Can you share one of the major challenges you encountered when first leading the company? What lesson did you learn from that?
When we started the LiveTrigger adventure, we were starting our way into the digital marketing world. The main problem was to find an IT expert and a music lover at the same time. That’s when, after trying to hire someone for the website development, unsuccessfully, we ended up finding Gege, our chief executive IT master. That was probably the best thing that happened to the team after Jacopo started to be part of the project. With Gege we were able to test and develop LiveTrigger platform the way it is today. Without Gege, LiveTrigger would not exist today!
The lesson learned is that it is really important to plan everything before going into execution mode and try to test as much as you can, listening to your user’s advice.
The lesson learned is that is really important to plan everything before going into execution mode and try to test as much as you can, listening to your user’s advice.
What are some of the factors that you believe led to your eventual success?
Passion is the number one reason why we are still in the market today. LiveTrigger is an NGO, and we built it because we love live music and we want to support every local scene in the world. Sometimes it is hard, cause you know, we are all volunteers and we work really hard to make it happen every day.
What are your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became CEO”?
Always believe in yourself: sometimes it is hard, especially when you are tired or when shit hit the van, and that’s when it is more important to be focused, believe in the project and keep going.
Make friends, not enemies: most of my best friends are from the music industry. We grow up together, cultivating the same passion. It makes the difference! I’m not a professional musician, but I have a lot of fun at playing at live music shows and having a great time with my mates!
Connect with other people: the best thing about live music events is that everyone wants to have fun. It is an excellent opportunity to make new friends and connect with new people. So let’s do that, expand your music community and have fun!
Try to dedicate all yourself to your project: life goes on pretty fast and time is the most valuable asset. Don’t waste time and dedicate all yourself to your passion and your project as soon as you can… or you will regret it later!
Don’t let envy to pull you down: the music industry is a really competitive market with not a lot of money. A lot of people loves music and would like to make a living from their passion, and there would be space for everyone if people would try to compete less with each other and share what they have. So I would suggest not to be the envy of other people’s fortune and try to be friends with everyone and collaborate, instead of being competitive for no reason. It will bring good fruit over the long run.
What advice would you give to your colleagues to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?
It’s important to work hard as it is essential to relax and let it go. As humans, we can’t be productive at 100% every day for 12/16 hours. We need a break sometimes, often! The brain has to relax to be able to collect ideas. Then, take breaks from technology if it’s possible. I practise yoga and meditation every day; I do physical exercise and practise self-care daily. I think that personal care and inner development are compelling tools to make you more productive, focused and in contact with your inner self. Of course, I also love to go to live music gigs on weekends and play the drums with my bands and hang out with my friends and my partner.
None of us is able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?
There is not just one person. I’m grateful to all my friends, my family, my partner, everyone that give me support every day and love music the way I love it.
What are some of the goals you still have and are working to accomplish, both personally and professionally?
Professionally I’m happy at the moment. I work as a digital marketer at Clix4u a digital company based in Melbourne. My real passion is SEO, but I manage social media and PPC campaigns, too. I’m was a criminal lawyer for 5 years in Italy, before moving to Australia, cause all my family are jurists, and I followed the family tradition in Italy until I’ve found my actual partner Alex, that I followed on the other side of the world 🙂
I like to work in the digital space because there always something new to learn and it is not dull for me.
I really like digital PR, and I would like to become better at connecting with other amazing professionals in the world.
Personally, I want to become a better person, understand more myself and help other people that are not as lucky as I am.
What do you hope to leave as your lasting legacy?
Don’t know yet. I like to help people and make everyone feel special because everyone is special. So I try every day to make the right choice, to support people that need help and to keep going and doing what I love. I think that we’ll never know what life deserves to us, so it is better to cultivate good relationships and make a difference every day.
You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would enhance people’s lives in some way, what would it be? You never know what your idea can trigger!
I want people to connect, have fun and live a life free from things they don’t like to do. That’s why I created LiveTriger, the most advanced live music community on the planet.
How can our readers follow you on social media?
LiveTrigger socials are:
My personal Facebook is:
My Professional Facebook is: