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Entrepreneurial passion: an explorative case study of four metal music ventures

Laura Laaksonen (Aalto University School of Economics, Aalto, Finland)
Antti Ainamo (University of Turku, Turku, Finland)
Toni‐Matti Karjalainen (Aalto University School of Economics, Aalto, Finland)

Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship

ISSN: 1471-5201

Article publication date: 12 July 2011




Entrepreneurial passion has recently begun to fascinate a growing number of researchers. While only a few systematic studies exist, Cardon et al.'s review suggests passion as a prevalent phenomenon among entrepreneurs. They make a call for empirical and systematic studies of entrepreneurial passion to provide insights for practice and research. This paper aims to apply the recent theoretical advances in a particular empirical setting: the heavy metal genre in the popular music industry.


Using a qualitative in‐depth case study approach, four ventures that are considered new ventures in the metal music business are studied.


The findings strongly imply that the grounds for a globally successful creative venture require the passion of at least one inventor entrepreneur. Also, at least one founder is needed to take the venture to the next stage, where business is formalized for ramp up and at least one developer is needed to grow the business after the other two identities and earlier stages of the venture life cycle have created the platform on which to build and develop the business. The paper also finds that these role identity‐related behaviors are essential characteristics for artists in the popular music industry.


The popular music industry is an excellent research site for studying entrepreneurial passion because artists start their careers and join together to form bands mainly because of their passion and love to create and perform music. While the theory of entrepreneurial passion offers a promising approach for entrepreneurial studies, few systematic studies exist that apply it.



Laaksonen, L., Ainamo, A. and Karjalainen, T. (2011), "Entrepreneurial passion: an explorative case study of four metal music ventures", Journal of Research in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, Vol. 13 No. 1, pp. 18-36.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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