Thomas “LT” Bott
Music Biz Essentials
“What essentials contribute to success?”
We were given the task to research a music industry professional who has, through entrepreneurship, established a successful business. I chose the multi talented multi millionaire Sean “Puffy” Combs (a.k.a Puff Daddy/P Diddy). I will show that through a combination of factors, non more essential than Puffy’s shrewd business mind and sheer determination, Sean “Puffy” Combs’ entrepreneurial skills has established one of the most successful business careers of my generation. As mentioned, several factors have contributed to Puffy’s £467million empire. These factors include his diversity of roles, shrewd exploitation of opportunities, ability to spot talent and gaps in the market, contacts and networking, and raw gut instinct and determination. Diversity
One of the factors that set’s Sean Puffy Combs apart from other Hip Hop entrepreneur’s is his multi tasking abilities. During his career he has taken on the roles of A & R executive, record company executive, producer, remixer, rapper, publisher, publicist, promoter, song-writer, composer and actor. In addition to these entertainment-based roles, Sean Puffy Combs is a fashion designer, restaurateur, club owner, merchandiser and fragrance designer. Sean Puffy Combs has worked hard from a very young age to have as many fingers in as many pies as possible. And his success is evident as he sits on top of a £467million fortune, and is the highest earning Hip Hop artist in the world to date. While Puffy’s hands on/do all approach has been one of the biggest contributors to his success, he backed this up with an ability to spot opportunities. Opportunist
From a young age Puffy understood that he needed to find a way into the music industry. In recent years, in an interview with the Rolling Stone magazine, Puffy was quoted saying “All black’s got is sports and entertainment.” It seems that this mind set, whilst somewhat negative, has been a driving force for Puffy, spurring him on in the entertainment industry. Whilst attending Howard University in 1988, where Puffy displayed his abilities as a Hip Hop promoter, the young opportunist hounded friend and rapper Heavy D until he secured an internship with Heavy D’s label, Uptown Records.It took two years of harassment to secure his placement but, within three months of being on board at the label, Puffy was appointed director of Artists and Repertoire, an amazing feat at 21. Whilst his strong knowledge of Hip Hop allowed him to locate artists that had potential, Puffy began to understand that he needed to be doing more to earn more. So he began to produce and enjoyed early success with Mary J Blige’s hit album “What’s the 411?” A year later Puffy was vice president of Uptown records, and attracting masses of attention, building a wealth of contacts. So when he was sacked in 1993, it only took him two weeks to sign a distribution deal with Arista Distribution for his own label, Bad Boy Entertainment. Talent
It was here that Puffy began to exploit his knowledge of Hip Hop signing unknown artists like Craig Mack and Biggie Smalls. Puffy’s knowledge at this point in time was a massive contributor to his success, as his remix of Mack’s “Flava in ya’ Ear” became a platinum record reaching the top ten of the pop charts in 1994. Biggie Smalls followed suit a year later when his debut album “Ready to Die” double platinum. Of course Puffy had the sense to be either producer or executive producer on everything, and in many tracks his voice can be heard topping and tailing records. This clearly a shrewd move allowing him to claim performance rights. After this Puffy signed any and every artist with money making potential, and expanded beyond Hip Hop to include RnB artists. He clearly understood that the more music you make, covering more genres, the wider your fan base, thus increasing your profits. In 1998 Puffy even recorded and...
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