The Intersection of Money and Music: An Interview with David Canter

David Canter is trading his laptop for a guitar—at least for part of the inaugural Future Proof Festival in Huntington Beach, California. The executive vice president and head of the registered investment advisor (RIA) segment at Fidelity Institutional’s Clearing & Custody Solutions is slated to join his bandmates onstage, where they will perform as the group Hi-Fidelity. 

 

The group, started in 2011, covers a range of rock, reggae and jam band hits. I sat down with David and between riffs of some of his favorite tunes (yes, he was playing guitar and singing during the interview), he shared how to connect with an audience, what he’s learned from blending his personal and professional pursuits and how the Grateful Dead inspires better leadership.

 

Future Proof: Most attendees at Future Proof will know you from your work at Fidelity, but you’re really making your appearance at the festival as a musician.

 

David Canter: It’s funny you say that. I haven’t been quiet about my musicality. I love music. 

 

Live music provides such a great chance to commune with people. It’s really a way of bringing people together. 

 

That’s why I’m so excited about Future Proof. This event is about more than just the function of wealth management. It’s about bringing community to it all. Offering live music and other creative outlets fosters a sense of community and culture.

 

FP: You’ve been playing music since you picked up a clarinet at age 9, which you later swapped for a guitar when you were a teenager. What are the risks and rewards of performing at Future Proof?

 

David: I deeply appreciate the team aspect of playing in a band and other members of the band have all achieved a level of mastery. I view myself as a credible musician, but I’d say that what I bring to the band is a sense of cohesion. A band is a collection of individuals, just like any team, any business, any company. What I love about our band is that we all gel. 

 

The easy risk to cite is that you worry you aren’t very good. You always worry that you’re not going to satisfy the audience. But I think we’ve gotten to a place where we feel that we’re a credible act. We probably have at least 50 songs we could just pull out of a hat, immediately.  

 

[At this point David broke into a few bars of the song “867-5309 / Jenny” by Tommy Tutone.]

 

We also want to be good participants at the broader festival. We love the feeling of helping to make events more successful. 

 

FP: If you need a vote of confidence, you’re booked to perform at a four-day festival in Huntington Beach, California, that’s already drawing comparisons to SXSW. Would you say you’re booked more for music than for speaking?

 

David: Not quite. They’re almost equal, with the edge going to speaking. I’ve done a heck of a lot of speaking, because people want to hear about our business perspective. But it seems like they really get more enjoyment out of hearing the music.

 

By the way, you should know we play all original songs—made famous by other artists.

 

[David laughed and played a few bars of the song “Deal” by the Grateful Dead.]

 

I’m excited about the chance to surprise and delight the audience and stretch creatively. I’m also excited about seeing these Wall Street-type, wealth management people rock out.

 

FP: One of the aspects I see advisors continually trying to balance is the intersection of their personal and professional personalities. Do you see Hi-Fidelity blurring the lines between who you are professionally and who you are personally? How do you navigate that intersection?

 

David: It goes right back to traveling up the value stack. It goes back to authenticity. 

 

If you can find a way to connect with others that’s broader and more emotional than just the functional elements of your profession, you’ll have better outcomes. The best advisors, the best business professionals, can carefully integrate their personal life and their charitable life into their professional life.

 

FP: You’re a huge fan of the Grateful Dead. What do you think the band’s guitarist and singer, Jerry Garcia, would like about Future Proof? 

 

David: Jerry wasn’t exactly a perfect person, but he had this mindset that you shouldn’t strive to just be the best at what you’re doing; you should strive to be the only ones that do what you do. 

 

I think that’s what he would like about Future Proof. It’s about creativity. It’s about imagination, specialization, doing something no one else is really doing. 

 

To my knowledge, no one else is doing a wealth management event that infuses creativity, the arts and music. It’s a crossover event and I think that’s awesome.

 

You know what else I think he would love? Even though the Grateful Dead was not a surf band, he’d love that it is happening in Surf City, USA. 

 

FP: What album does every advisor need on their playlist? And what’s your favorite song?

 

David: This is an easy one. The Beatles’ album “Revolver” is perhaps one of the greatest albums ever made. 

 

My favorite song of all time and one that inspires me is the Grateful Dead’s “Ripple.” It’s such a beautiful song with so many instructive lyrics. It’s a leadership ballad: not everyone’s going to follow you, because the path might be yours alone. 

 

FP: I can’t wait for more later this year! What should attendees expect to hear when you hit the stage in September? 

 

David: The rock hits are fun. I love crowd pleasers. We’ll probably play some Prince and Red Hot Chili Peppers. We might do some reggae. We’ve been known to play some Bob Marley. And you know, it wouldn’t surprise me if you heard a song from The Beach Boys, too. 

John Swolfs Advisor Circle

JOHN SWOLFS

John Swolfs is the Chief Content Officer at Advisor Circle, a product studio for growth-oriented financial professionals. John is responsible for creating dynamic programs for Advisor Circle’s world-class events which include Future Proof festival and Exchange, the world’s leading ETF event.

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Attendee Experience

Investopedia Top 100 Financial Advisor Reception

Monday, September 12, 2022 5:00-7:00pm PT
HYATT REGENCY CALIFORNIA COURTYARD

Future Proof brings together the best and brightest advisors from across the country. This exclusive event allows the Investopedia Top 100 advisors to reconnect, share insights and celebrate their achievement of being named to this prestigious list.

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Scoop Ice Cream Parlor & Lounge

Ice cream food truck

Get the latest scoop on pivotal industry topics and current events affecting the wealth space. By leveraging our robust event technology, you’ll have the opportunity to create both peer-led and industry-led roundtable-style discussions. Learn more about the most pressing topics impacting the future of wealth. These hard conversations are made easier as you and your cohorts grab some ice cream and settle in for an informal yet highly engaging conversation.

Future Proof Creator Corner

Woman recording a video for social media

rhe Creator Corner is built to support creators, creatives and brands. It’s equipped with a podcast recording studio and first-of-its-kind Collab Lab. The podcast area will afford attendees the ability to record podcast sessions and will feature podcast consultants helping to answer questions of both existing podcast hosts and aspiring creators. The Collab Lab is where asset managers and fintech companies collaborate with leading and emerging finance influencers. Looking for engaging content built for the modern financial professional or investor? We offer high quality video and audio production for all your creative needs.

Future Proof Live

Production stage setup

Future Proof Live is our full-production broadcast studio strategically placed at the heart of the Boardwalk. Our very own Future Proof anchors will provide all-day commentary featuring casual speakers and celebrity interviews as well as unexpected guest appearances. Future Proof Live extends our one-of-a-kind experience to a larger audience virtually.

PCH Stage

Event attendees listening to a panel discussion

The Pacific Highway stage is the most versatile stage at Future Proof. With countless setup options, the PCH Stage is your go-to spot for industry insight and innovation, all while staying current with the latest trends in money, culture, tech and impact.

Ocean Stage

Concert happening on Huntington Beach

As the beating heart of the boardwalk, the Ocean stage will feature seating for over 500 and have the look and feel of a concert venue on the beach. The ocean stage will host a range of exciting content from industry-changing keynotes to the closing concert featuring today’s biggest musical acts.

Social Audio Experiment

Small crowd listening to performer sing

Podcasts are all the rage, as they excite and entertain audiences from afar. Future Proof changes the game, as we invite your favorite podcasters to host their shows live from the festival. Forget passive listening. Future Proof’s Live Podcast sessions allow you to interact directly with your favorite podcast creators as they record live episodes just feet from the Pacific Ocean.

Brewing Lounge

Coffee bar on Huntington Beach

You can’t expand your perspective and think differently if you aren’t exposed to a broad perspective. That’s why our speaker faculty isn’t limited to traditional finance. The Brewing Lounge will bring out-of-industry experts to present their visions for a new world of wealth. To help fuel the conversations, we’ve created a true coffeehouse feel complete with baristas just waiting to pour you the perfect cup of joe.

Poppin’ Pitch Lounge

Popcorn lounge set up for photo ops

Nobody likes to be pitched, but the truth is we all need a little help keeping up to speed on our dynamic industry. The What’s Poppin’ Pitch Lounge sets the tone, giving you intimate access to short and punchy demos from the most innovative fintech companies in the world. Grab a bag of popcorn, sit back, relax and absorb the next wave of innovation impacting the world around you.

Wheel of Impact

Event attendee enjoying the prize wheel

Future Proof’s Wheel of Impact promotes the power of giving in a fun, dynamic and social way. With a donation of any size, attendees can have the ability to spin the wheel, determining where the donation will go and how it will be used. Land on the “mystery” selection and have a chance to win items, trips and other experiences.

RIA Executive Leaders Reception

Monday, September 12, 2022 6:00-8:00pm PT
Pasea Hotel & Spa

Join 30+ executives from the country’s top-ranked RIA firms for a VIP evening reception.


If you are an executive leader (or owner) of a fast-growing RIA firm and are interested in participating get in touch with us today. Space is extremely limited.

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"Future Proof Closing Night Concert" to become "Future Proof Music Festival"

Tuesday, September 13, 2022 4:30-10:00pm PT
The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

The Future Proof Festival experience roles on as we host our annual music festival. This year’s lineup features an array of artists and musicians covering everything from rock classics to hip hop. Come early and stay late sampling the numerous food trucks and bars. Don’t miss headliners rap legend Big Boi and indie pop sensation Fitz and the Tantrums showcase their talents.* * admission is included with your Future Proof Pass.

"Future Proof Beach Bash" to become "Future Proof Festival Kickoff Party"

Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach Resort

Relax and unwind as you connect with the Future Proof community, as you enjoy and evening of tasty bites, and delicious cocktails as celebrity DJ, DJ Mick sets the vibe as the sunsets on the beautiful Pacific Ocean.

Health Is Wealth Center

Yoga mats laid out for workout

Physical and mental health is the cornerstone of any successful long-term wealth plan. But for years, our industry has prioritized work over health, leading to unhealthy lifestyles and employee burnout. The Health Is Wealth Center provides a warm and relaxed setting, allowing attendees to come in and recharge, grab a drink from the juice bar and eat healthy snacks. The space will also be home to daily group yoga and fitness classes as well as meditation sessions.

The Grand Unveil

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Future Proof does nothing small. Join us on Monday morning for the grand unveiling of our half-mile beachfront boardwalk complete with activations, meeting areas, multiple stages, and everything else you need to make your Future Proof experience truly one of a kind.

ONYX Advisor Network Meet Up

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Health is Wealth: Surf Lessons

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We are in Surf City U.S.A – of course we are going to have surf lessions. Whether you are catching barrels are just learning to stand come out be part of the community and tick learning to surf off your bucket list.

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Media-Only Networking Reception

Sunday, September 11, 20226:00-8:00pm PT
Monday, September 12, 20226:00-8:00pm PT

Join 25+ key financial media, industry reporters, and other press for a media-only evening reception.


If you are a member of the press and are interested in participating get in touch with us today. Space is extremely limited.

As a member of the press, you will have the opportunity to RSVP for both receptions on Sunday and Monday.

Advisor Networking Dinners

Sunday, September 11, 2022 6:00-8:00pm PT Monday, September 12, 2022 6:00-8:00pm PT

Maximize your time at Future Proof by participating in a 10-person advisor networking dinner organized by us and industry partners. Held at popular downtown Huntington Beach restaurants, our organized Advisor Networking Dinners will provide you with a one-of-a-kind culinary experience while making new friends and catching up with old ones. Space is extremely limited. Must RSVP.

Health is Wealth: HIIT

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Just because you are away from home it does not mean you need to miss your workout. Start each day with a HIIT beach workout hosted by the Future Proof communities Jess Bost. * space is limited, preregisteration required

Health is Wealth: Yoga

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Future Proof puts a value on your health and ability to decompress from the grind of festival life. Begin your day with a focus on centering body and mind for a day of meetings, networking, and more.

Health is Wealth: Meditation

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Your mental health is as important as your physical health. Set the tone for each day as you take the time to relax your mind, center your thoughts and prepare yourself for the day ahead.

Storyteller Series: This Is Not Financial Advice

Sunday, September 11, 2022 6:00-6:30pm PT
The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Investing has become mainstream and nowhere is this better encompassed than in the new documentary film This is Not Financial Advice. Join us as we invite the cast and crew for an open conversation on the mindset of today’s investors, and take a closer look at investing as a cultural phenomenon and show clips from the movie.

All Access: Fitz & The Tantrums

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Join your fellow peers for an all access experience with indie pop sentation Fitz and the Tantrums. This excluisve event is a can’t miss experience for any music fan.

FintechX Demo Drop

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Social Audio Experiment:
EYL Presents Market Mondays

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Cultural icons and financial influencers Earn Your Lesuire host their wildly popular Market Mondays Show live from the Future Proof stage. This can’t miss sessions ties together market events and education to help investors be better invested.

Social Audio Experiment: Bloomberg's Masters in Business Live

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Hear podcast legend and host of Masters In Business Barry Ritholtz for a can’t miss live recording of the most influential podcast covering the world of business.

Social Audio Experiment:
Invest Like the Best Live

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Recgonized as one of if not the most influential podcasts Invest Like the Best records live from Future Proof. Join host Patrick O’Shanunessy and his guest for indepth look at the markets, investing and the world of business.

Social Audio Experiment: Bloomberg Sports Live

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

The world of sports is more than just the games. In this unique session, Bloomberg Chief Corresponded Jason Kelly hosts financial advisorJoe Mclean and his superstar sports clients for an in-depth look at the changing world of sports and why more athletes are embracing investing and building wealth beyond the court.

All Access: Big Boi

The Future Proof Boardwalk (Outdoor Event Space)

Future Proof is all about experiences. Rub shoulders with Big Boi in this invite-only meet & greet in the Future Proof green room.