Creed Media's Timothy Collins on the Musical World of Gen Z

Plus, his personal path from MJ to Trevor Daniel

Timothy Collins is co-CEO and co-founder of Creed Media, a Gen Z agency in the music industry specializing in creating viral hits on TikTok and beyond. 

Creed has worked on over 2,500 campaigns since 2019 and generated more than 150 billion views. Its successes included Trevor Daniel's "Falling," Ashikko's "Stupid," campaigns for Surf Mesa and S1mba as well as huge mainstream names for the likes of Universal Music, Warner Music, Parlophone, Epic, Island Records, Capitol Records, Spotify and more. 

The agency has also worked with the likes of H&M, KFC and Voi, becoming a gatekeeper to a new generation that is ready to take its place at the centre of culture, politics and consumerism.

We caught up with Tim for our Liner Notes series to learn more about his musical tastes and journey through the years, as well as recent work he's proud of and admired.

Tim, tell us...

Where you grew up.

I'm born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden, but lived between Toronto and Stockholm during my early days, too.

Your earliest musical memory.

Hearing Michael Jacksons "Who Is It" in my uncle's car where he blasted the bass to show me "what real music sounded like." Since that moment, I became absolutely obsessed with the King of Pop.

Your first concert.

My first concert was watching AC/DC when they performed live in Stockholm at the Stockholm Stadium. I caught a guitar pick that Angus Young threw into the audience, which I have framed at home.

Your favorite bands/musicians.

John Mayer. Because he's incredibly witty and funny to listen to when he speaks in between sets as well as a complete music nerd, which you can hear in the complexity and the simpleness of the music he creates. Less is more, etc. True guitar inspiration and an amazing songwriter.

Ambrosia. Just really love the vibe they portray in their music and feel like I can listen to them in whatever mood I am in all the time.

Michael Jackson. The King of Pop will always be the King of Pop. Without MJ, I would have never found my passion and love for music and I will always be grateful for that until the day I die.

How you get your music these days.

Through recommendations from friends, TikTok or Spotify Radio.

Your favorite place to see a concert.

Difficult one. I really love open-air concerts in Stockholm but can definitely enjoy a good ol' closed in-stadium concert as well. Looking forward to being able to watch live concerts in the Avicii Arena in Stockholm in the near future.

Your favorite music video.

The music video for Jamie XX's song "Gosh" is mesmerizing and amazing. Keeps your attention throughout, and is in general just a true piece of art.

Your favorite music-focused TV show and/or podcast.

Music Business Podcast on Spotify, which is hosted by my friends Sam Hysell and Jordan Williams.

A recent project you're proud of.

I will always be incredibly grateful and proud of our involvement in the success of Trevor Daniel's "Falling." It changed everything for me on a personal and professional level. I'm also super proud of a release our songwriter friend Koda just recently had with a song called "You," performed by Regard, Troye Sivan and Tate McRae.

Someone else's project that you admired recently.

Loved the Burger King smoke trails campaign that BBH did. 

How musicians should approach working with brands.

Finding brands that will truly be enhanced by your creative integration and the other way around. Find a brand that you believe you truly and authentically can build a long-lasting relationship with.

How brands should approach working with musicians.

Look for artists who are not necessarily the biggest names, but rather the most relevant ones. Today, working with artists is the easiest way to gain quick yet lasting cultural relevance, and finding those artists who truly engage a superfan community can take your brand to the next level if done well. See Miley Cyrus and Chipotle.

What music can do that nothing else can.

Experience the world through a new set of eyes in the moment of your experience.

What you'd be doing if you weren't in the music world.

I'd probably still be doing something which would allow me to be a creative problem solver.

Liner Notes is our weekly interview series, publishing every Monday, where we chat with folks in the music industry about their creative inspirations, their favorite bands and musicians, and generally what music means to them. For more about Liner Notes, and our Clio Music program, please get in touch.

Tim Nudd
Tim Nudd was editor in chief of the Clio Awards and editor of Muse by Clio from 2018 to 2023.

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