Eric Ellis: Local entrepreneur works to reach young people through the power of music

'We want a big stage and a big voice'

In Tri-State business circles, Eric Ellis is best known for Integrity Development Corp., the management consulting firm he started 23 years ago.

But since 2009, Ellis also has been working to grow another business – a record label called Positive Message Music. His goal: create songs that young people want to listen to without the profane, degrading lyrics that pervade so much popular music.

“What we’re trying to make is hit music,” Ellis said. “We want a big stage and a big voice.”

The company has a website, an app and a group of 12 artists who use the studio Ellis has set up on the lower floor of Integrity Development’s offices to record their songs. Ellis doesn’t charge his artists to use the studio. Members of the public can rent the studio at below-market rates, he said.

The venture hasn’t become profitable yet, but Ellis is confident that will come as more young people discover that good music doesn’t have to deliver a bad message.

“We are trying to go after the hearts and minds of young people and others,” he said. “Music is a way of influencing the values of this generation.”

WCPO's Dave Marlo did a story on Positive Message Music in 2011. Click here to see the video or go to

WCPO Insiders can read about the tragedy that inspired Ellis to start the record label, what his kids thought of the idea initially and what his diversity consulting business has in common with this newer venture.

To continue reading: Subscribe Now or