Category Archives: sponsors

Why Silicon Valley Bank Likes Music

Aren’t you lucky when your day job and your passion are one in the same, or at least you work somewhere that lets you weave the two together? The entrepreneurial mindset and casual nature of Silicon Valley seems to lend itself to an outsized number of musicians-at-heart working in the tech sector.

We’re not surprised and we completely understand. At Silicon Valley Bank, we spend our days with the entrepreneurs and their investors who continuously impress us with their creative ideas and mathematical minds. It stands to reason that a good number would also be great musicians.

Believe it or not, there are even some bankers in on the act. 

A little known fact: not all bankers wear suits and ties (see photo). Some even forgo the navy sport coat and khakis. Silicon Valley Bank’s in-house band, The Exploding Warrants, is becoming so popular it’s tough for them to work in their day jobs sometimes. As longs as the finance guys aren’t listening (kidding), we’re finding that’s a good thing. A great thing, in fact.

A corporate culture that encourages personal expression, a fun atmosphere, and a sweet gig for its musicians (the Exploding Warrants have played The Fillmore and SXSW in the last two years), is hugely valuable for its team. As a company, you become more collaborative, more generous, more creative and more human.

All of this translates to better output, more productivity, happier clients and eventually the bottom line … we’re still a bank, after all. We often say that we’re inspired by our innovative clients, and that’s true in a number of ways. As individuals we are in awe of some of the technologies and life-saving solutions our clients bring to market. As a company, we’ve learned a lot about how to be a great place to work by watching how they do it.

We’re likely preaching to the rock band here, since your companies have no doubt figured this all out.

Keep inspiring us. We’ll be looking forward to seeing and hearing the talent Silicon Valley Rocks delivers in just a couple more weeks.


Banking the world’s most innovative companies and exclusive wineries, Silicon Valley Bank’s diverse financial services, knowledge, global network, and world class service increase our clients’ probability of success.   With more than $20 billion in assets and nearly 1,600 employees, we provide commercial, international and private banking through 33 locations worldwide. Forbes Magazine ranks SVB among America’s Best Banks and Fortune considers SVB one of the best places to work.


Weather Underground advisory: keep music in schools!

SVR VIP Sponsor Weather Underground, the world’s first online weather service, is committed to delivering comprehensive, reliable weather information. Home to more than 21 million users and over 19,000 users contributing local observations from personal weather stations, Weather Underground is able to provide up-to-the-minute weather conditions for the most finely targeted areas.

We spoke with Richard Lowden, VP of Sales and Advertising, to find out more about their commitment to philanthropy, music education, and keeping you and your communities safe.


SVR: Tell us about your commitment to the community. What are some of your philanthropic efforts?

Weather Underground: At no charge, we provide important information that people use on a daily basis to improve their lives, keeping them safe when storms are approaching.

This year, we participated in the 5th Annual MUST Golf Tournament where all proceeds from the event were donated to music education in Oakland Schools. We were thrilled to be a part of a great event that supports such an important charity.

Another charity that we are dedicated to is Portlight Strategies, a volunteer based organization that has committed itself to rural and small towns and people with disabilities, providing them with supplies and support when weather disasters hit.

As a company we are deeply committed to supporting our community through charities that make a difference. Our company is comprised of many parents; there was a direct correlation and agreement to support Music in Schools Today, a charity that we believe is vital to the growth of our children’s education and our community as a whole. Being a dot com company ourselves and a company comprised of tech enthusiasts, we are excited to mingle among the Silicon Valley Rocks audience. Weather Underground was founded way back in 1995—since the inception of the company we have stayed committed to delivering the most comprehensive, reliable weather information possible.

SVR: Why is it important to keep music education alive in schools?

Weather Underground: At Weather Underground we support the effort to keep music education alive and understand the importance and impact it has on our children’s lives. Studies have shown a direct correlation between music education and academic excellence. Confidence, strong worth ethic, commitment and motivational effects are all excellent benefits children gain from learning the art of music.

SVR: What was your own experience learning music growing up?

Weather Underground: I began studying drumming and percussion in the second grade. It provided me with an additional creative outlet, which proved to be very important, especially during my teenage years!