Greg Susoreny

For Greg Susoreny, it's been a long time coming. His debut as a songwriter and recording artist is the fulfillment of a genuine passion carried in his heart over several years. While his arrival in music comes after starting several businesses in other industries, he is not ending something; he's just getting started. With the sharp contemplation and adult contemporary/country sound that defines his music, time spent listening to Greg feels like talking over beers with Kenny Chesney and Don Henley. All insight, and no hangover.

Born in Northwest Indiana and raised in Dallas, Texas, Susoreny is the epitome of a good American man. Like good American men do, after graduating from college, he went to work, but not in music. With his business degree from Indiana University School of Business, Susoreny founded a technical staffing company in Dallas, owned a general contracting company in Miami Beach, and owned a small cafe in Las Colinas, Texas. A true entrepreneur, Greg has an impeccable eye for opportunity. As he watched musicians play at his cafe, he recognized his opportunity to pursue his passion for music, and his dream to start his own record label. It wasn't long after he started working on his songwriting that he founded Truth Records. He signed his first artist in 2003 after moving to Miami Beach, Florida.

Working with his first Truth Records artist was a good motivator for him, and as they worked on his album, Greg's desire to write and record his own music came calling. "I've always been a poet. Rhymes come easy to me, and I can clearly hear the songs in my head even though I don't play an instrument. I have an Arranger's brain and really enjoy the entire recording process." Original songs, from the heart and head, are a natural fit for Susoreny, who has always worn his heart on his sleeve and held honesty as his mantra. Being at the musical helm is also the right fit for his entrepreneurial spirit. Not only did he found Aqua Blue Records, the label on which his debut album, Ramblin Man, is released, but he directly managed every aspect of the creation, production, and release of the record.

Ramblin Man, which chronicles the joys and aggravations of being restless and rootless, has an impeccable pedigree, featuring top Nashville session musicians Jonathon Yudkin on strings/mandolin (Rascal Flatts), Danny Parks on Acoustic, Electric and Gut-String Guitars, (Kenny Chesney, Toby Keith, Brooks & Dunn), Jay Vern on piano/Hammond B3 (Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood), Wayne Killius on drums/percussion (Aaron Tippin, Toby Keith, Big & Rich), and Sam Levine on saxophone (Amy Grant, Brooks & Dunn, Trey Anastasio). This stellar group of musicians gathered with Greg not just to tell a story, but to tell his story. "I am a businessman with a tremendous amount of drive and focus, but at the same time I understand what truly matters in life. I can survive in this world with very little. I don't do well in a structured environment; I need to be free."

Free, indeed. From his current home at the base of Pikes Peak in Colorado, anywhere could be his next stop. As the president of his own record label and the writer of his own songs, he can set the course and take action in his music career. This freedom is not just good fortune; it is what he has earned over years of passion, imagination, and hard work. There is a lot more to come, too. "I want to write and release several more albums of my own, and build Aqua Blue Records. I want to find talented artists who have the drive and determination to become successful. It's about both aspects for me, my own recording career and my label." That's a lot on one plate, but his track record so far speaks for itself. Some may say he's getting started late in the game, but the truth is he's right on time.

How do you describe your music to people?
I would say my music is a cross between Adult Contemporary, Country, Pop with a touch of R&B.  All of my songs tell a story, you know exactly what I am singing about.  I love to write songs that tap into my emotional and romantic side.  I open my heart and soul very wide when I write music.

Tell me about how you originally got into your craft.
I've always had a passion for music.  I used to listen to music all the time as a child.  I never pursued music when I was younger, but once I started writing songs, the passion and love for music came pouring out of me.  I can sit by myself for hours listening to songs.

I set up a small record label in Miami Beach in 2003.  My goal was to identify talented artists to develop and ultimately produce their music.  I realized that running a label was only part of my passion.  Once I started writing songs, I never looked back.

I built a recording studio and spent many hours learning the production and recording side of the business.  In addition, I spent time building relationships with knowledgable people in the music industry.  I learned the entire process of how to write, record, produce, arrange, promote, distribute and release an album.  My business background has been a tremendous help in all aspects of recording and releasing my first album.

I founded Aqua Blue Records with the intention to release several of my own albums and sign talented artists to the label.

What is your favorite thing to do in the whole wide world?
I love to travel and write music.  I enjoy spending time in different parts of the world.  This really gives me a chance to see how other cultures live.  There are so many beautiful places to visit.

What is your biggest challenge when it comes to running your business?
I've always been an entrepreneur.  I understand the dynamics of starting and building a company very well.  I've started several businesses in a variety of industries.  I decided to write, record and produce songs  because of the passion I have for music.  I never intended to make money off my music.  I used writing and recording music as an escape from the stresses of everyday life.

I think the biggest challenge of any business owner, no matter what the business, is finding honest, hard-working, organized and ethical people to join your team.  You obviously have to have a solid business plan, but executing the plan takes talented individuals.  I also think learning your trade is critical.  Many young business people try to start businesses without analyzing and studying their market and competition.  

When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
I honestly wanted to be a professional basketball or baseball player.  I either had a basketball, baseball, football or soccer ball in my hand everyday.  

In what way has your community impacted your development as a musician?
I grew up in Dallas, Texas which is a large diverse city.  I liked Dallas because it had an interesting music scene.  I listened to country, rock, pop, Hip Hop and R&B growing up.  I enjoyed listening to the lyrics of country music and the beat of Hip Hop and R&B.

I used to go to a few Latin clubs because I liked to dance Salsa and Merengue.  I loved the way Latin music was arranged and produced.  It made you want to move and groove to the rhythm.  I think being exposed to such a wide variety of music played a big role in the style of my writing and recording.

What other artists out there do you love?
Brian McKnight, Bryan Adams, Rob Thomas, Stevie Wonder, Julio Iglesias, Marc Anthony, Hootie and the Blowfish, Phil Collins, Mariah Carey, Alicia Keys, David Gray, John Mellencamp, Shakira, Christian Castro, Chicago, Journey, Don Henley, Peter Satera, Michael Jackson, Babyface, Matchbox 20, Michael McDonald, Garth Brooks, Travis Tritt, Kenny Chesney, Luther Vandross, Richard Marx, Michael Bolton, Eagles, Lionel Richie, Marvin Gaye and more...

What does your future hold?
I will continue to travel, start businesses, invest wisely, write music, produce music, record music, build Aqua Blue Records, live healthy, explore my spirituality, spread peace, embrace love and life, keep a positive mind and hopefully get married and raise my own family someday.