Michael Sammis

EVP/CFO of Universal Music Publishing Group–

From a very early age, music has been an integral part of my life. It has very much shaped who I am. At age 7 my Mom bought me Meet the Beatles and from that point, every time we went to the store I’d hit her up to buy me another 45 single. At a very young age, I used music as a way to center myself in social gatherings. Kids would come over to my house to listen to the music my mom got for me. But music did not just provide me with a vehicle for social acceptance, it actually moved me. Before I was ten years old, I would play songs over and over until I had memorized the words. In my early teens, there used to be a deal at a local record store..2 LP’s for $5.30 (those were the days). Every time I got my hands on $5.30, I would go to the local record store and get two LP’s, usually of bands that I had never heard. I became a plethora of music knowledge and found many special bands I believed I could call my own. My teenage to college years were also consumed with music, as I strove to be in musicals (I was nominated to All-New York State Choir several years in High School) and, in college, a working band.

I cannot imagine a life without music. The feeling you get when you find a musical connection cannot easily be put into words. We all have songs that will always bring us back to memories of first loves, family vacations or countless other significant moments in our lives. Music releases you. Music is a drug which makes you powerful, emotional, energetic, imaginative and healthy. I can only hope that the problems of our times (piracy, apathy) do not dilute or render this drug useless