Breakfast meetings, post work meetings, meetings at shows, meetings about meetings, honestly the corporate world has gone mad.
With recession fear and a now-its-anyone’s-time talk brainwashing us 24-7 no one wants to relax and chill for a minute .As one hip hop legend said to another- Slow down son-you’re killin em!.
I’m observing a long standing trend for young, hungry talent that has no patience with a ”get rich or die trying” philosophy that is admirable but not if you’re not prepared to put in the hard work. Honestly, there’s no point in starting. I hear people describe themselves as music stars of the future that can’t sing, play an instrument or song write. Seriously miming’s not gonna cut it. I hear others describe themselves as being the CEO of TV Company. They then proceed to tell me they’ve never picked up a camera, can’t edit, and have no ideas for creative shows and no business acumen. Confused? I am. Don’t get it twisted, many entrepreneurs have made it without being the main act as such but a unique talent in some field is essential or like the 1 hit wonders we’ve seen come and go-you will go and never come back again!
The media is an easier place to get into working than it was years ago, but for a certain demographic-its still and always going to be tougher. At MEDIA TRUST we’ve recruited new, young reporters without much experience in the field and are given them the most hardcore boot camp training which actually see’s them delivering a real TV show to a real UK TV channel with our corporate partners (BBC, ITV, C4, C5, SKY, MTV) having an option to pick up their content too.This is exciting. But scary. Really scary. Cos if one of them slips’ then ashow is affected. They’re doing intense training on filming, research, scripting, producing, writing, editing and more. They are interviewing realpower players, stars, community folk and more- like any real reporter world. As if that’s not enough I have them writing columns for national newspapers and iconic websites as well as spots on national radio. I believe they have to leave me at the end of their time knowing they are a 360-degree media a champ that can be thrown into the deep end with any project. This way they have ticked the all-important stumbling block that states all graduates need experience. They are very employable and able to hone their skills on a deeper level now knowing which areas their strengths lie in. There are no limits any more as to a job role. Once you were a writer, producer, director etc. nowadays if you’re not everything you’re unemployed. This example relates to most industries now. (Brain surgeons and their peers should ignore the paragraph above).
One young Londoner that’s a pure fire example of talent, positivity, diversity, inclusion and graft is Patrick Chukwuemeka Okogwu otherwise known as Tinie Tempah. Tinie’s been slogging away for years with smaller music broadcasters and singles but eventually it certainly was Written in the stars for him that his talent was spotted by theright people who were able to spot a future star in the making and he playedball. Often record labels sign acts and the act expects it to be plain sailing from there on in. it isn’t. Labels can promote and distribute but cant give you a personality or a work ethic. Tinie persevered without making enemies, badmouthing his peers or playing up to the stereotypical urban artist model. His inspiring attitude, unique music, articulate manner, humbleattitude and hard work have paid off. His manager is his cousin Dumi who learnt everything he knows about the music industry from a book! Imagine that!. They set up their own record label DISTURBING LONDON- and then
Last fortnight tinie went platinum in the USA with his single ‘’Pass out’’. This is ground breaking for a UK rap act. Admittedly he went top 10 in the USA pop charts but the enormity of his achievement cannot be smothered. This will undoubtedly open up new doors for UK acts from the same genre. Tinies team has always thought out of the box. His new mix tape is being hosted by comedian and actor Russell Brand. That’s some next level-ish. Achievements like this in my industry make the rest of our jobs easier. Often people wonder where the power in success lies. It lies everywhere. Tinie makes it big on his own merit. We help push him further. He helps himself and us by playing the game and raising it. We all win.
A true winner in every sense of the word is Kojo the comedian. A few years ago he was a comedian doing the London circuit. After bringing him onto MTV BASE with his own series he has spread his wings in the worlds of TV, Film and now radio by presenting the breakfast show on ChoiceFM with former Radio1Xtra DJ Max. congrats to both on their unshakable tenacity. In this business you’ve got to have lots!
FINAL NOTE- Current Office Debate-is it a good or bad thing when corporations jump on the urban bandwagon & exploit it in a negative way for the culture? More on that soon!