It’s not always about the talent or the skill, to some it’s luck, relationships, networks and to others it’s timing and that thing we cannot put a finger on (divine intervention) … probably.
“Psychologists call it the 90-10 principle. Ten percent of life is what happens to you and 90 percent is decided by how you react to it. We have no control over what happens to us – high winds rip the roof off, your train is delayed, or a meteorite lands on your car. The 90 percent, however, is up to you.” – (Rod Judkins)
We live in a strange world, live a life without a manual or rewind button, your mistakes are your best advisors. Some started and got the breakthrough others are still looking. I read Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom’s story in the Forbes magazine and it’s really amazing how he got his break in the “washroom.”
I have seen people play from the dirtiest fields to the greatest fields of the world, I have also seen others grey on the same dirty field. Such is life, the only element you have control over is the ability to keep fighting till you see that light.
Just don’t give up, don’t be like the proverbial miner who couldn’t dig for gold because he got fed up. Don’t be fed up, and don’t look back, there’s a reason you started and you must achieve that.
Your destination is forward and that should be your direction. Isn’t it interesting that before we see day light we have to go through darkness? Have you thought about that?
Greatness is never achieved in a comfort zone. It takes a lot of hard work, strategy, vision, focus and the zeal to ignore the world for the goal. It doesn’t matter how you started and how people see you, that is their problem, your success should be your problem too. Remember there will never be a better time to start, you would always wish you had started earlier, that could be today. Small starters end great.
“During the 1920s, brothers Adolf and Rudolf created the Dassler Brothers Sports Shoe Company, a business based in their mother’s laundry room in Herzogenaurach, Germany. By 1948 they had split the company into separate firms, with each of them running one of two competing factories on opposite sides of town. Their equal determination to produce the better sneaker led them to be world leaders in their field: Adolf’s company was Adidas, and Rudolf’s was Puma. Herzogenaurach became known as “the town of bent necks” because residents were constantly checking to see which of the two brands their neighbors were wearing.”
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Ghanaian Twin Brothers Launch 0207 Def Jam Label to Champion British Music Culture
Universal Music UK has today announced the launch of 0207 Def Jam, a new frontline label and the UK home of the iconic Def Jam Recordings label, with a stellar cast of execs including the appointment of highly respected industry executives and Ghanaian London-born twin brothers, Alec and Alex Boateng as co-Presidents.
0207 Def Jam, which takes the first part of its name and inspiration from a telephone code in London as a nod to the music, culture and art the UK is famed for, is partnering with the legendary Def Jam label which has shaped and propelled cutting-edge hip hop culture around the world for over 35 years.
Alongside his brother, Alex takes the helm after 10 years at Universal Music UK, most recently as president of Island Records’ first Urban Division which has played an instrumental role in shaping the current and sustained trajectory of UK Black music. After taking the role in 2018 he oversaw UK campaigns for Drake, Tiwa Savage, Buju Banton, Nav, Giggs, Unknown T, Ray BLK, M Huncho, Tekno and Miraa May whilst also spearheading the campaigns for George The Poet’s debut book release, British film, The Intent 2 and UK based clothing brand/label Lizzy. Alex is a member of Universal Music’s Task Force for Meaningful Change, which was created as a driving force for inclusion and social justice. He joined Universal Music in 2010 in a digital role at Island Records before going on to hold positions in marketing and A&R, a period which included campaign launches for Tinchy Stryder, Drake, The Weeknd, Nicki Minaj as well as A&R for artists including JP Cooper, Sean Paul, Jessie J, Dizzee Rascal, Donae’o and Big Shaq. He started his music career balancing a marketing degree with DJing, multiple shifts at radio and running his own marketing and promotions company with his then BBC 1Xtra colleague G Money, moving on to consulting roles with Atlantic Records, Polydor and AATW.
Alec joins 0207 Def Jam after seven years at Warner Music, most recently as co-head of A&R at Atlantic, where he collected a clutch of industry awards and played a pivotal role in the commercial and cultural success of acts who have defined their era, including the emergence through to her chart-topping dominance of Jess Glynne, the revolutionary rise of Stormzy, Burna Boy’s rapid ascent to global superstar as well as the likes of WSTRN, Rita Ora, Kojo Funds, Stalk Ashley, Preditah and many more. A seasoned broadcaster, he also spent over a decade at BBC 1Xtra where he hosted the breakfast show for several years and a series of other specialist shows with a focus on breaking new British music. Alec remembers a passionate deep-rooted love of music as a child, evolving into DJing and leading the award-winning UK mixtape team Split Mics before halting university after he was headhunted to cut his teeth in A&R. First, he worked with Ministry of Sound and then began operating his own co-owned music company alongside the late industry lawyer Richard Antwi. Together, they oversaw a plethora of success with Wretch 32 and worked with artists such as Popcaan and Gyptian amongst many others.
Alex’s former Island colleague Amy Tettey will be joining the team as managing director after 11 years, the past four as finance director, at the Universal Music label where she worked across the entire roster of Island artists including everyone from Amy Winehouse to Drake and Dizzee Rascal to Giggs. Alongside Amy, Jacqueline Eyewe and Char Grant join as marketing director and A&R director respectively. Jacqueline – previously senior marketing manager at Atlantic where she spearheaded the marketing of Black music – has been deeply rooted in contemporary Black music and culture for the last decade. She joined Atlantic in 2015 where she has worked with artists including Stormzy, Burna Boy, Lizzo, WSTRN, Kehlani and Cardi B. Char, whose 10-year career has been immersed in artist development and management as well as songwriting, joins from BMG Music Publishing where she has published the likes of Giggs, Ghetts and producers P2J, TSB and AOD.
Alec and Alex report to Universal Music UK Chairman & CEO David Joseph. He says, “Bringing the Boateng brothers together at 0207 Def Jam is an important moment in British culture. Alec and Alex have always done things their own way with success always quick to follow. They have already assembled an exceptionally talented top team with a clear vision for this exciting new chapter in the history of one of the world’s most famous labels”.
Jeff Harleston, interim Chairman & CEO, Def Jam Recordings said, “It is a perfect fit having Alex and Alec at the helm of 0207 Def Jam. Their creativity, artist relationships, and connection with culture are all key elements that have made Def Jam such an important label for over 35 years. I have no doubt that Alex, Alec and their team will only make the label and the brand even stronger.”
Alec Boateng, co-President of 0207 Def Jam says, “Music, art and artists really, really matter. I’m super excited to play a leadership role in this brilliant new space we’re creating for amazing music and talent to live and evolve. A space which will support both our teams and our artists to be the best version of themselves.”
Alex Boateng, co-President of 0207 Def Jam says, “Especially in these times, this is a real privilege. I’m proud our collective journey now includes partnering a legendary label with a style that only London and the UK can provide. Looking forward to watching and guiding where the music and art takes the journey next.”
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