Meet Our Founder

Cancer Survivor. Ex-Football Player. Musician Advocate. Entrepreneur.

Every Underground movement needs a leader who knows what it takes to rise through adversity. Gerard Longo is that leader.

Gerard’s interest in music began at an early age. In his earliest days, he was captivated by live performances of pop and R&B vocal groups including New Kids on the Block and Boyz II Men. From there, he became active in the arts in his hometown of Long Valley, NJ. A classically-trained vocalist, Gerard participated in choir and theatrical productions throughout high school, and became close friends with classmates and fellow musicians. Through his adolescence, Gerard could be found supporting live music; whenever friends’ bands had a show, he was front and center in the audience.

That passion continued to grow through young adulthood. A 2010 graduate of Moravian College (now Moravian University) in Bethlehem, PA, Gerard maintained his participation in the arts, while also finding a new passion for broadcasting. Gerard portrayed “The Quinn” through seven seasons on Moravian’s college radio station, WRMC, hosting his own show, The Quinn Spinn, from January 2009 through graduation in May of 2010.

That experience had a long-lasting impact on Gerard, and served as the eventual catalyst for his career in the music industry. After returning to New Jersey post-graduation, Gerard spent years searching for a creative outlet as a reprieve from the grind of corporate America.

One August night in 2013, he found it.

Gerard revisited some old episodes of The Quinn Spinn’s college run. Immediately inspired, Gerard made plans to relaunch the show in podcast format, with an emphasis on featuring and interviewing independent musicians from around the world. In the decade since, The Quinn Spinn has welcomed guests from five continents, and features conversations with musicians, creative entrepreneurs, and real humans who aspire to have a positive impact. As time goes on, more people are hearing those conversations; in 2022, The Quinn Spinn was within the top 5% of most-shared podcasts across all of Spotify.

The Quinn Spinn served as the point of singularity for Underground Music Collective, a Nashville-based digital music resource center and multimedia services company built from the ground up. Launched as the Bethlehem, PA-based blog, Lehigh Valley Underground, in 2016, UMC has evolved into an ecosystem designed to empower independent musicians and creatives through content features, live events, educational opportunities, and much more. Since relocating to Nashville in November 2018, UMC has partnered with regional, national, and global brands, including Universal Music Group, Red Bull, the Tennessee Titans, Creative Artists Agency, Redfin Real Estate, and countless others. In addition, Gerard and UMC have been featured in MusicRow Magazine, Authority Magazine, Valiant CEO, WKRN News 2 (Nashville), and countless other media outlets.

Gerard is also no stranger to overcoming the odds. His experiences as a scrappy, undersized football player helped him to forge a temperament rooted in hard work, determination, and a gritty, UnderDog spirit. The lessons Gerard learned throughout a decade-plus on the gridiron have served him throughout his life, beginning at age 16, when a malignant soft tissue sarcoma in his left ring finger threatened to put an end to his playing days – and much more. It was this brief, yet harrowing experience – and Gerard’s rapid, post-surgical recovery – that reinforced Gerard’s fighting spirit, and helped him understand the opportunity for impact that is provided to us by being alive.

Gerard strives to have that impact by building a strong, vibrant, empathic creative community, spearheading UMC’s efforts to support a variety of charitable causes over the years. These include the American Cancer Society, Safe Haven Family Shelter (Nashville, TN), Helping Our Music Evolve (Nashville, TN), and various pandemic relief efforts for musicians, venues, and arts organizations nationwide.

Across many years, passions, and projects, one thing has proven to be certain: if there’s a challenge on the horizon, you can count on Gerard Longo to meet it.

Currently, Gerard resides full-time in Nashville, TN, while spending a portion of every summer in Bethlehem, PA and Cape May, NJ.