CAREER CONSULTANT, MANAGER, PR
Ottawa born Mike Gormley has achieved top recognition as journalist, record company executive, artist manager, music supervisor for TV and films and marketing/PR expert in the 40+ years in the music industry.
Gormley has been responsible for setting into motion many artists’ international careers. His work has brought the world such successful artists as film composer Danny Elfman, massively successful pop band The Bangles and helped launch the careers of such diverse artists as Rod Stewart, Rush, BTO, The Police and Supertramp.
When Mercury Records was absorbed into the German-Dutch giant, Polygram, Mike assumed corporate public relations duties and helped establish the PolyGram brand in the U.S. In the same week Mike was chosen to move to PolyGram's headquarters in Hamburg, Germany, he was beckoned to join the executive staff of A&M Records. Of the two, Mike chose to move to L.A. as head of Publicity for A&M, where he rose to the post of Vice President of Publicity and Assistant to the Chairman.In this position, he worked closely with The Police, Supertramp, Herb Alpert, Styx, Squeeze and others.
Other artists Mike has managed include African World Music star Angelique Kidjo, actor Lisa Langlois, hit songwriters Lowen & Navarro, Australian singer/songwriter Anne McCue and producer/film composer Paul Schwartz. In a diversion from the pop/rock world, Mike oversaw the career of Broadway and film star, Paige O'Hara, best known as “Belle” in Disney's, "Beauty and the Beast" films. He served as the music supervisor on
several films and TV shows, including "Adventures in Babysitting" and the first season of the TV hit, "The Equalizer" with music composed by Stewart Copeland. He also kick-started the career of another Oscar winning film composer, James Newton Howard, giving him his first composing job on the film “Head Office”.
By the age of 18, Mike was already a weekly columnist and writer for the Ottawa Journal, covering major pop music stars of the day, such as 60s icons The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, The Everly Bros., etc. from his base outside San Francisco where he was attending college. After returning to Ottawa for a short time to write for Canada’s Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Gormley moved back south of the border when he was recruited as a columnist and youth editor for the Detroit Free Press (then the fifth largest morning newspaper in North America). Mike also wrote articles for Playboy, Creem, Billboard, Chicago Sun Times and others on a freelance basis.
After being invited to join Mercury Records, as Director of Publicity, Mike engineered the Media campaigns for Thin Lizzy, Rod Stewart, The New York Dolls, Rush, Bachman-Turner Overdrive, The Runaways, The Ohio Players as well as many others. During his tenure, he was instrumental in signing
the pioneering punk band The New York Dolls and the groundbreaking German Electronica artists, Kraftwerk.
Mike left A&M to start his own management firm LAPD, (Los Angeles Personal Development) with Miles Copeland, manager of The Police and founder of IRS Records (REM, The Go Go’s, Fine Young Cannibals and others).
Gormley eventually became sole owner of LAPD. During this time, he convinced Danny Elfman, leader of the legendary band, Oingo Boingo to write the score for Tim Burton’s first movie “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure” spawning Elfman’s mercurial climb to the top of the film composer world. Elfman, a multi Oscar nominee is now considered one of the top five film composers in the world.
In the 1990s, Mike co-founded and ran Wildcat Records, distributed by Universal, which had success in several genres, including Top Ten on the AC charts with Michael Damian and AAA success with the Canadian band, The Boomers. In the process he discovered comedian Craig Shoemaker. Marketing clients have included the hip-hop dance company Groovaloo, the Great American Food and Music Festival, Townsquare LLC, Rhino Records, Nicklodeon and others. Mike also acts, through LAPD, as a consultant to the indie label Funzalo Records and Dallas based Psych Rock band, Moon Waves.
In the year 2008, Mike established the UCLA Extension's continuing education program called, "The Insider's Guide to Music Management." Among other things the class covered what music managers do, why they are important and how to avoid management pitfalls.
Mike is a past President of The Conference of Personal Managers and a past board member of L.A. WoMen In Music. He is presently on the board of Music Manager's Forum U.S. and spent six years on the Board and is past-Secretary of the Folk Alliance International and its Executive Committee. Mike is also on the Management/Legal Advisory Committee for AFTRA and a Director of Ombience, a center that provides aid to musicians. Most recently Mike joined the Advisory Committee for Music From the Streets. The goal of Music From the Streets is to mobilize national awareness of homelessness and benefit organizations doing the most to solve this problem.