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About Us

Back in 2011, Dustin Nicholson and Nick Will came together and developed an idea: why not give people whom they have met over their travels an outlet for their talents? Thus, Gaining Ground Media was born! Through trials and tribulations, the two of them along with several other creative individuals have conceived this publication.

Thank You!

-Dustin Nicholson & Nick Will,

Gaining Ground Media


Dustin Nicholson

Founder and Editor In Chief

Dustin Nicholson grew up in Watertown, N.Y. Not the biggest town in New York State, but he learned to make do with camping, traveling, and local concerts. He grew up with many talented friends, most of whom were musicians. Looking to find his place in the world he picked up a camera. Starting in high school, Dustin’s love for photography and music blossomed. Growing up, he listened to The Early November, The Starting Line, Silverstein, Bright Eyes, and Taking Back Sunday.He started bringing his camera to local shows and doing promos for bands. After a few years doing that and meeting so many wonderful people. Dustin, along with these brilliant people, started Gaining Ground Media.


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Dustin’s photography can be seen here.


Nick Will

Lead Editor

Nick Will grew up in the backwoods of Bouckville, NY. Being vastly different from most of his classmates and peers, Nick developed a love for underground music and the environment early on. He grew up with bands like From First to Last, Coheed and Cambria, Saosin, Brand New, the Blood Brothers, and Death Cab for Cutie. Nick initially pursued acting and drawing, but has found his muse the strongest behind a pen. Working with close friend Dustin Nicholson, Nick has been an extreme asset to Gaining Ground Media from its earliest stages.


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Chris Ballard

Contributing Writer

Chris Ballard is a writer and designer from Binghamton, N.Y. He’s currently working on a master’s degree in journalism at Syracuse University, and his work has been published in a host of different daily newspapers and websites. Chris joined forces with Dustin and Gaining Ground Media through a mutual friend, and has been philosophizing with some of the most notable names in the alternative music scene since then. He hopes to convey each artist’s unique creativity and passion in his writing, and capture the essence of alternative culture.


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Beth Ann Downey

Contributing Writer

While Beth Ann Downey was growing up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, she remembers listening to The Starting Line, Yellowcard, New Found Glory and Something Corporate while all of her friends favored country or Top 40 radio. In college, she discovered that her offbeat music taste would lend itself to her career aspirations. She started covering the small but thriving music scene at Penn State University for the college paper — attending arena and theater concerts but favoring sweaty house shows. Now, she hopes you discover your new favorite bands through her posts for Gaining Ground Media.


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Though we already have an excellent team, we are always looking to expand, and any idea from anyone is

always appreciated.

If you have any ideas for Gaining Ground Media please email us at