Adventures of a CTO at Musiversal 👨🏻‍💻

¡Hola! I am Javier Mey CTO @ Musiversal 🎶

I am currently based in Madrid, Spain, joined Musiversal in September 2020 and I would love to tell you all about Musiversal’s challenges & successes we have faced since then... (damn! 17 months already - time really flies when you are having fun!).

There really is a lot to say, but one blog post won’t cover everything, so I'll keep it short ;)

A bit about me

First let’s clear out some questions about who I am and what makes Musiversal such an interesting place to be for somebody like me.

First, one of my passions is creating things: when other kids were saying Astronauts, Policemen or Firefighters, little Javi wanted to be a mad inventor, you know, the ones in their basement inventing robots, time machines or stuff like that. Back then all I could use were probably legos & duck tape, but luckily for me, now with all the experience & technologies, my toolset is way bigger and we can do way more interesting stuff. This all means: I am a very creative person and I like to mess with tech.

I’ve worked for all types of companies in many roles, many industries, sometimes as an employee, sometimes as a freelancer, sometimes as a founder - and that gives me a unique perspective on tools, technologies and processes, and most importantly I have experienced a lot of mistakes that you don’t want to repeat (also a few nice things).

In short: I learn how important is your team, work environment, happiness, work, and personal & professional growth.

Musiversal CTO Javier Mey in his home office

What brought me to Musiversal

So at some point, in the middle of all this pandemic, moving from one apartment to another I got this opportunity to become the CTO of a music company that was doing something different: helping music creators & creating stable jobs.

Ok, disclaimer alert: I am not a musician and I’ve never worked in the industry before. But all the musicians I know weren't able to work full time in music - they were all teachers, or accountants or whatever, which is very frustrating since you cannot work on something you love, like I do!

But as I said before, one of those things that I learned in previous experiences was to grow and tackle challenges right? I was imagining all those gadgets interconnected to create music, all those super complex audio interfaces, streaming, music… well, if I now say that I didn’t take the job, you will definitely freak out. So yes, I took the challenge!

Musiversal CTO Javier Mey

Getting started at Musiversal

I joined this new company and I must admit it was better than I expected it to be (not that I expected it to be bad, but you know…). I was going to be the first engineer in the company, and a non-musician in a world of musicians, and we all know how things can go with the wrong formula.

But it turns out when you are surrounded by an awesome team of professional musicians, used to trying, repeating and having a lot of patience, learning about the industry and making certain decisions becomes more efficient. My first weeks at Musiversal involved a lot of very basic questions about music, music theory, rights, scores, chords… you name it.

While learning all of that, I remember looking at the technology stack back then and I must say… I was astonished...

What I saw was a truly impressive mix of different tools, a product being built that customers loved, even with some issues, without there having been any engineer adding into it! It had a lot of flaws, it wasn't scalable and so on, but overall it was really great work in terms of adaptation, hard work and a lot of creativity. There were lots of things to improve, to standardize and create, etc, but it was a solid base created from people who approached problems in a similar way that I would have.

So, my next steps were what you probably are thinking: cut unnecessary things and migrate these unscalable mixes of tools/ services into something much more coherent and scalable. And that is what we have been doing since then: migrating the platform to our own custom solution which allows us to provide a much better experience, expand in terms of features and reduce costs, of course.

Musiversal's CTO Javier MeyHousekeeping...

While doing this, I put a lot of effort into creating workflows that would make engineers & team members feel comfortable - improving team success, communication and creating a very transparent environment so that anybody in the company would know what we are doing.

We established our own agile methodology based on SCRUM (it is always difficult to follow SCRUM by-the-book, am I right?). Then we hired AAA engineers, built our own platform (for customers & partners), centralized everything with our own databases, redesigned & rebranded, integrated payment providers, became more data-driven and scalable, and improved the overall experience.

Step-by-step we have been evolving and improving all the company in terms of tech, providing tools, products and services, creating a culture that is making us grow faster and better. It is insane how this little prototype evolved into what we have today.

What we're up to today

These days we are growing the business, stepping up our game with amazing (some groundbreaking) features, growing the team and even writing blog posts, but luckily we are not running out of exciting challenges, so we can have the chance to look at new technologies & solutions to improve the experience of everybody in the music production space.

We even created our own our own R&D department to discover new features to innovate in the music space, experiment with new technologies and aim to bring music to everybody... which brings me back closer to that mad-scientist phase, haha.

I told you at the beginning I can’t cover everything with one blog post, but I will tell you about some success stories: we hosted 30k+ sessions, we have our own file sharing system, we automated deployments & releases, we hired an amazing team and we are having fun all the way!

Musiversal's CTO Javier Mey

I am very grateful to be part of this amazing journey with this great team and I cannot wait to keep building more things. Finally, if you want to be part of our amazing team, please reach out to us, and if you want to be part of Musiversal, follow this link.

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