|Bill Tullis - All TV Music President|
by Mark E. Waterbury
"I found out that I had a fascination with broadcasting," Bill Tullis recalls. "I guess that I knew that I wanted to do it real early on." Early is right, as Bill was a six year old growing up in Valdosta, Georgia when he already had an idea of his life's direction. He followed the career even before college, working in radio while attending military school in Atlanta as well as when he was at the now defunct Berry Academy in Rome, Georgia. Bill returned to Valdosta for his final year of high school before entering Valdosta State University. There he help found the college radio station while working at a local top 40 station pursuing a degree in business management. "I always had the obsession with broadcasting, but I also had a love of music to go along with it. I was self taught with everything that I did and was never really an intern because I was always working somewhere. I knew what I wanted to do so early on that I already had my education when it was time to go get a real job."
Bill stayed with radio when he moved back to Atlanta to attend Georgia State, primarily where he worked as an on-air personality and an assistant music director. He worked with WRAS radio at that college and several other stations. but soon found that his broadcast passion was headed towards working with another medium. "I was offered a job at Channel 17 as an audio person," Bill recalls. "They had started up a couple years before I got there, and then went national about a year later." For those who may not know or remember, Channel 17 became Superstation WTBS, the anchor for the soon to be mammoth Turner Broadcasting System. Beginning as an audio engineer, Bill progressed over the years to become audio director, and then the audio and music director. He ended up custom engineering and produced all of the music for the Turner Networks family. "When I started, there were only a hundred and fifty employees there, and it grew to about eight thousand. I was very much involved with some of the decision making in the growth period, and even found them their Techwood Drive location."
Bill stayed with Turner for twenty-six years. "Work is play and play is work. There were a lot of daily challenges, and sometimes it got a bit crazy when someone at CNN would call you at four in the morning telling you they needed a piece of music by eight. But I enjoyed working there as much as anyone could enjoy what they have a passion for." In 2002, Bill was part of a downsizing at Turner, and although he remained involved in some aspects of audio production for the networks, Bill found one aspect especially intriguing. "I was able to work with other people and competing networks which I was not able to do when I was officially at Turner. So I formed All TV Music as an outgrowth of what I did at Turner." All TV Music is a programming and placement firm for music in broadcast and sports entities. They acquire and place music for the Atlanta Hawks, Braves and Thrashers, the Weather Channel, and a number of other TV stations and cable networks nationwide. "It's a great way to get artists music out there. We also have Trollsound, a first class studio and mobile recording unit, and do a lot of mastering as well. We are four freelancers and, to be honest, we are very busy all the time and couldn't tell there is a recession. We are doing everything we want and need to do." Bill is obviously quite happy with what he is doing now, considering it is along the same lines of what he found a passion for at the age of six. One new aspect to what he is doing here is that he is able to work more closely with the musicians who have created the music that is utilized in their various projects. "The good thing here is we try to give everyone individual attention. And with this line of work you learn something every day, there is always someone else who has a better idea and a better way of doing it. You just have to know what you are doing, especially if you are going to work in a studio. One of the best lines I ever heard is that if it is not happening in the studio it is not happening in the control room. You have to be well educated in it."
Bill's advice for musicians: "There are a lot of developing artists out there that have no clue. They think their music is great and then they send it to a music company, and think that is all it takes. You have to have good legal representation and good distribution, and never sign your songs away. Maintain ownership of all your materials unless you get a really good buyout."