Portland and Los Angeles-based Walker and New York-based Able Baker are merging under the banner We Are Walker (in partnership with boutique audio post company Heard City), a new content and licensing agency that will drive innovation in content creation as well as licensing, original composition, supervision, music strategy, sound design and library services.
Collaborators and competitors for more than 10 years, Walker founder Sara Matarazzo and Able Baker founder Peter Gannon regularly license and create music for highly-regarded brands and filmmakers across feature films, television, commercials, mobile and digital platforms.
In addition to supervising and producing music for Nike, Google, Coca-Cola, Old Spice and director Noah Baumbach, Matarazzo’s award-winning Walker has transformed relationships with top musicians and brands into unique projects including a holiday album for Target, a series of 7-inch records for Nike and a comic book with singer-songwriter Daniel Johnston.
“Clients are not satisfied with the limited scope of today’s licensing deals,” explains Matarazzo, “which is why we are creating a company that combines original content capabilities with the administrative side. When we clear a song, that is the perfect time to ask an artist or label, what else can we do together?
Gannon founded Able Baker last year and has since created music for Verizon, Gap, Budweiser, Samsung and Google Android (including the latter’s viral hit Friends Forever – the most shared spot online to date).
“There is an opportunity to not just be reactive,” he says. “We invest in content creation, collaborate with artists and champion new distribution channels.”
“I want to work with people who are doing good work, and we complement each other so well that this merger felt like a completely natural step” says Matarazzo.
“I felt inspired when Sara asked me to be her partner because I admire what she’s built,” adds Gannon. “Walker is one of the most creatively accomplished music companies of the last 20 years. To merge and become We Are Walker as partners is extremely exciting.”