Music production

Music and Business – Lessons from Music Production in the Mortgage Industry, with Snap Lending Co-Owner Jeff Ali

When Jeff Ali isn’t in the office of his mortgage company or managing his real estate investments, it’s possible to find this Houston entrepreneur as his alter-ego Jstarz, working at his music production company.

Versatility is a word that perfectly sums up Ali’s career. During a regular working week, Ali oscillates between several contrasting spheres. Along with being the co-owner of Snap Lending, a real estate and business investor, and a committed father, Ali has built a thriving career as a music producer.

“I still run my dad’s businesses on a daily basis, I still have Snap Lending on a daily basis, I still have a wife and a child on a daily basis, and I have my music on a daily basis,” Ali said. “To be honest, my daily life is so crazy and all over the place.”

Since childhood, music and entrepreneurship have permeated Ali’s life. Coming from a Pakistani immigrant family filled with business owners, he always gravitated towards the world of entrepreneurship. However, in music, Ali found a second passion.

To this day, Ali continues to recall how his deep love for music was born.

Ali’s earliest approaches to music came when he played drums in a rock band during his high school days. Back then, the music production industry wasn’t as accessible as it is today, thanks to technology and the internet. Thus, Ali decided to learn about musical recording to record the songs of his group.

Ali anecdotally recalls his interest in the music industry solidifying in his uncle’s jewelry business.

“My uncle was very big in the jewelry business and he was dating a lot of musicians, athletes and other celebrities in Houston at the time,” Ali shared.

Having such close contact with distinguished rappers and musicians, Ali wanted to dive into the musical world and learn more about this industry.

“I wanted to be around people in the music industry and learn from them, so I was like, ‘Let me transition into music and see if I can take that back,’ and here we are. today,” Ali said.

Nowadays, Ali’s professional life oscillates between Jeff Ali, the investor and co-owner of Snap Lending, and Jstarz, the music producer and songwriter. During his multi-year music career, Ali has produced music videos and composed songs for several top rap artists around the world.

Reflecting on his multi-faceted career, Ali does not view his entrepreneurial and musical careers as antithetical.

Many of the lessons and strategies from Ali’s career as a music producer can translate to the world of mortgages. A parallel between these seemingly contrasting industries is the meticulousness involved in both.

In the mortgage business, “you have to be very meticulous in your work and take it slow and steady,” Ali said. Similarly, “In the music industry, I learned early on that you can get in a lot of trouble if you don’t have the right catalog papers; I missed a lot of royalties and payments because I got so excited and moved too fast.

For Ali, the scrupulousness he developed throughout his musical career was crucial to growing up Instant loan at one of Houston’s leading mortgage companies, providing traditional and non-traditional mortgages to hundreds of families across Texas.

Ali admits that balancing his work at Snap Lending and his production studio can get difficult at times.

“God bless Netflix,” Ali said between laughs. After a long day at work, “the best part of my day is going to bed, turning on Netflix, and watching the latest and coolest shows.”

Today, despite the occasional intricacies, Ali feels lucky to be able to simultaneously pursue his musical and business career, his two passions.

By Juan Sebastian Restrepo
In collaboration with Artistic Initiative Agency

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