How a Great Collaboration Comes Together | Brian Medavoy

How a Great Collaboration Comes Together

Reno Wilson and Butterscotch

I talk a lot about the compounding nature of things. About transforming individual moments into a cascading momentum that turns into more good things. Of course, the path to getting there is still a long and winding road, so when it succeeds, it’s truly a beautiful thing.

Case in point: Reno Wilson and Butterscotch collaborating on this incredible rendition of Louis Armstrong’s “Summertime.”

I was so happy to get these two in a room together, especially since the path to doing so was an especially unique one.

The guy who created brianmedavoy.com is named David Nguyen. I found him on Thumbtack, and through our collaboration, we got to be pretty good friends. I learned that in addition to web design, David runs D4 Music Marketing, where he helps musicians create content and develop their presence online.

Turns out, one of those clients is one of the world’s best beatboxers, Butterscotch.

I knew my client, Reno Wilson was an admirer. As he’s working so hard on his one-man tribute to Louis Armstrong, Pops, I suggested the two connect.

This is what came out of that connection.

Anyone looking forward to the summer time? I know I am. One afternoon the amazing @butterscotchmusic w/ me as Pops got together with a few of our friends and sang Summertime. Enjoy! And when you get a chance check out @butterscotchmusic teaching beatbox at this link:https://youtu.be/Efk_z9kg2MUThanks to Brian Medavoy for setting it up.Shoutout Village StudiosSteve Clark on drumsAlan Chang on pianoAndre Carter on trumpetphotos: @erwinmoredirected and edited by: @thecaseywashingtonRicky Ricky Riccardi Louis Armstrong House Museum #LouisArmstrong #Pops #Summertime #EllaFitzgerald #PorgyandBess

Posted by Reno Wilson on Wednesday, March 25, 2020

I mean… wow!

When I met David, I figured we’d work together to build this site and that would be that. Instead, I made a good friend, and we turned that initial meeting into an enduring professional relationship that has helped us both do something awesome for clients.

The real proof that this momentum was something special? That video above is the first take.

They didn’t rehearse a bit. They just got in there and ripped it and it was incredible to see. When momentum gets rolling, good things tend to happen. The proof is in the pudding.

I’m always saying it’s about who you know, but that’s just the half of it.

Really getting to know people the universe puts in front of you is so important. Don’t take anyone for granted.

That’s good advice for anyone, but especially in this business. This entire industry is built on relationships. All relationships. It’s important to get to know the people in the various sectors of your life because you never know what you may be able to do for each other.

And I don’t just mean professionally. I didn’t gain anything from helping to arrange this collaboration. This didn’t further my professional career. It probably didn’t further Reno’s or Butterscotch’s either, but we did create something beautiful and meaningful.

If that isn’t the point of life, I don’t know what is.

When you cultivate the relationships around you, you create greater opportunities to make something magical.

Your neighbors, your trainer, your dry cleaner — they all have some magic in them. You never know what they know or who they know.

I could have had a perfectly fine, perfectly productive working relationship with David if he was “just” my website designer. But I was curious about who he was and what his other interests were. I got to know him better, discovered this part of his life, and we were able to connect the dots that eventually led to this brilliant collaboration.

I truly believe that the jump between mid-level success and the absolute pinnacle hinges on whether you’re a part of a large, open network or a small, closed one.

The more you meet people who are not like you, you develop the self-awareness to understand your weaknesses and surround yourself with people with corresponding strengths. When you meet people from different backgrounds and different industries, you build broader connections that provide more ample opportunity.

As Tony Robbins says, “Knowledge is power and information is currency.”

Often, at the beginning of your career, it can feel like you can’t do much to help others. What you can do, however, is connect people who would benefit from knowing each other.

We’re on this planet, and in this industry, to help one another. No matter how big the mountain feels, you always have the power to climb by connecting.