Fighting P Diddy, managing Gwen Stefani & Nas, what Roger Moore said in Monaco, and turning the music industry on its head, with Steve Stoute, Founder and CEO of United Masters
Before he was the manager for Nas and Gwen Stefani, before he was the producer for the film 8 Mile, before he was getting into fights with P Diddy and 50 Cent, Steve Stoute was an entrepreneur. He’s always been an entrepreneur – starting out shovelling snow and selling mortgages. And boy has he got some stories to tell, like what Roger Moore said to him when 007 met Steve and Bono in a bar in Monaco. Find out how Steve is turning the music industry on its head as the founder of United Masters, having recently raised $50 million from an all star trio: Apple, Google and Andreessen Horowitz.
“As an entrepreneur, your job is to have an idea, build out the vision so that it’s clear, and that people can buy into it. Employees, outside partners, strategic partners, bankers, whatever it may be, you have to get people aligned around your vision.”
Steve shares his journey, from growing up in Queens, New York, around the birth of hip hop, to investing in music producers, and creating and producing albums for Gwen Stefani and Nas:
“Once you start getting momentum and you have heat, you know, heat attracts heat, people want to be around what’s hot, and working with Nas and then LL Cool J and Foxy Brown, Mariah Carey, Lauryn Hill and the Fujis…”
Steve has learned from Sit Paul McCartney, has had public fallings out with 50 Cent, founded an advertising agency – Translation – and now with United Masters has created a record company that gives artists back their power.
“Don’t listen to the noise, be irrational with your pursuit of perfection, be irrational with your belief in your idea. And don’t allow people to tell you that you can’t do it. They’re actually just putting their limitations on themselves, on you.”
We chat about:
- The impact the rise of hip hop had on him
- Taking advantage of every opportunity
- Founding the record company in your pocket
- His darkest days as an entrepreneur
- Book – The Tanning of America
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