Fred Rapoport’s (partner) journey began in Chicago, where he started playing the piano at the age of 6...by the time he was 12, he studied with a new piano teacher who showed him how to play the blues and how to improvise, which became his first 'a-ha' musical moment. In his freshman year of high school, Rapoport enrolled in a brand new class called, "Electronic Music," where he learned how to program the infamous Arp 2600 as well as other classic, retro synthesizers. His fascination towards electronic music grew and started collecting synthesizers. While playing in rock bands throughout High School and College, Rapoport began to develop a style that utilized emerging music technologies to create new and fuller sounds. He attended Columbia College in Chicago, with a double-focus on Music and Marketing, and began to learn about the advertising and production worlds through hands-on internships with Ketchum Public Relations, ABC Radio and The Oprah Winfrey Show (he was her very first intern).
After graduating college, Rapoport’s natural curiosity about the relationships between music, advertising, production and picture became a driving force in his life and became the impetus for Rapoport to head west, to find his destiny in Los Angeles. Once arrived, he took a series of jobs in different aspects of the entertainment business: running an office for a high-powered producer on the Sony lot, temping for ICM, and ultimately, working for a top commercial director as a production assistant, where his interests in marketing, advertising and production began to converge. It was while driving a van full of Ad Agency clients that Rapoport took advantage of his proximity, and played a cassette of his original music -- non-song cues, that would take the listener to a visual place and later become his hallmark. The clients took notice, and Rapoport knew he was onto something. In 1993, he earned the opportunity to begin scoring movie trailers, which at the time was a new frontier, and Rapoport a pioneer, helping to shape the sonic landscape of motion picture advertising as we know it today. In 1995, he formed RPM, providing music to the growing film trailer market. After four successful years, Rapoport decided to spread his wings by teaming up with Rick Butler where together, they have score music and songs for shows for Disney, Nickelodeon, ABC/Touchstone, “Push, Nevada,” “Campus Ladies,” and commercials for Blockbuster and Microsoft, among many others.
4-year-old Rick ‘dickiebones’ Butler (partner) began learning to play the piano perched atop a stack of phone books in order to reach the keys, insisting that he be allowed to take lessons along with his older brother and sister. By the end of elementary school, he had also taken up clarinet, saxophone and drums, and according to Butler himself, ‘was widely considered to be the best musician in the school.’ Through Jr. High and High School in the Chicago suburbs, Butler took up guitar and bass, formed a few rock cover bands, and eventually began writing original material and finding his own artistic style. It was during this period of exploration, that Butler’s older cousin -- an aspiring orthodontist with a passion for music and technology (and a talented multi-instrumentalist in his own right) -- started a recording studio and took Butler under his wing, teaching him the science behind engineering and recording, which ultimately became Butler’s biggest passion: the marriage of composing and producing music. He spent as much time as he could in the studio cutting his teeth, engineering and producing sessions for others, and most importantly, learning to craft his own songs and compositions in his own voice: catchy, edgy, fresh, yet accessible, and produced in a big, cinematic style that was as important as the music itself.
After graduating from the University of Colorado-Boulder with a still-unused degree in Political Science, Butler moved back to Chicago to form grunge rock band 39 Steps as the lead-singer, guitarist and chief songwriter, while continuing his hands-on education in the studio. One short year later, the band decided to make a real ‘go’ of it, and relocated to Los Angeles, where they spent the next five years touring regionally, writing new material, and recording an LP and an EP on indie upstart Really Good Dave’s Records. In 1999, Butler decided to shift gears away from performing, and put his stylings to use back in the studio full-time, writing songs and composing music for Film, TV and Advertising. In 2001, Butler teamed up with composer Fred Rapoport and together, they have scored shows for CBS/Paramount, ABC/Touchstone, NBC, Nickelodeon and Oxygen, among many others.