In our never-ending quest to educate the hip-hop audience on all of the behind-the-scenes work that goes into bringing the world all the newest music, we bring you the GoodFellaz TV “Industry Hustla of the Month”.
This month’s“Industry Hustla of the Month” is Klassik of the Fleet DJ’s DJ Crew. A native of Newark, NJ, Klassik is the Co-Founder & CEO of one of the largest DJ Crews on the planet, the Fleet DJ’s. Over the last couple of years he has been the “go-to-guy” for Artists & Record Labels looking to break New Records on a National level, and has since expanded the Fleet Brand to include a Fleet Models division, among other ventures. Ya boy Tommy Gunz recently got a chance to sit down with Klassik, and we talked about everything. Check out the interview below.
Q: So you are a founder of the Fleet DJs. Tell us about the Fleet DJs. When and How did the whole movement start?
A: The Fleet DJ’s are a world-wide DJ Crew with over 165 DJ’s (and counting). The Fleet DJ’s started in Newark, NJ about 7 years ago. We started from having a few key DJ’s including DJ Shure Shot & DJ Delz, to now having DJ members from all across the world 7 years later. Honestly I never thought the Fleet DJ’s would get this big, but with hard work and having the right team around, we made it what it is today, so hear we are now. to make a long store short (laughs).
Q: So for those who don’t know, how long have you been in the music business?
A: I have been in the music business 14 years. I started as a DJ when I was 10 years old, and then moved on to making beats from there.
A: DJ’s play a major roll in the game today. In order to break a record these days, you need luv from the different types of DJ’s: Clubs DJ’s, Radio DJ’s & on-the-road DJ’s. You have your Big DJ’s and your more local DJ’s, but every single DJ is key to breaking a record.
Q: Being somebody who breaks New Music and Artists, who are some New artists that you’re feeling personally?
A: Out of the Newer Artist’s out now, I like Meek Mill; he has a crazy flow. I pay attention to ‘skills’ and ‘word-play’, what can I say I’m from Jersey (laughs). Let me see, who else? I’m diggin’ Vado’s music and I think Big K.R.I.T. is dope too! There are others, but those are the main ones that come to mind. With me, if you are talking about something in your raps, that’s who I like.
Q: What is your Advice to other people trying to get into the Entertainment Industry?
A: Wow! Well the business is soooooo different then from when I got started. In some ways it’s easier to get on now, but then again in other ways it’s even harder. What I would tell somebody trying to get into the business in 2012 is this: Make Good Music, practice your craft, get out there and network, and last but-not-least learn the Internet. These days trying to get into the music-biz is even more difficult than trying to be a basketball player (laughs). So if this is what you really want to do, you gotta work extra hard at it.
Q: So let’s talk music. I already know you are a Hip Hop head? Who are some of your favorite artists, all time?
A: Yeah man, I am down with the Zulu Nation since I was 15 years-old. So I am all hip-hop, believe that. My favorite rapper all-time has got to be Kool G Rap, but I also am a big fan of the legends: Big Daddy Kane, Craig G, Master Ace, the D.O.C. (before his accident), Whodini and of course, Public Enemy.
A: The best part of my job is networking with people and working with all the Fleet DJ’s. It’s a big job at times, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.
Q: What’s the Worst Part of the Job?
A: Hmmm, I gotta say the worst part of the job is that I don’t get to sleep to0 much (laughs). But other then that, I can’t complain.
Q: Where do you see the state of the modern-day ‘Record Label’ 5 years from now?? Different or similar to how things are now?
A: In 5 years the music biz will be even more different. CD’s will be gone, even Mixtapes might be done. The sound of the music might change again, as it does every couple of years. Getting a record-deal in general will be a lot harder by then I’m sure; 5 years from now the question might be: do you even want a record deal.
Tommy Gunz: Oh word, you think CD’s & Mixtape might really be a wrap?
Klassic: I think so my dude.
Q: Many Independent Artists complain that it’s hard to get their music played on the Radio. What is your advice on them getting Air-Play?
A: Artists come to me all the time saying “play my record”, unfortunately there is way more ‘Wack’ records out here these days then good. For one thing, these artists need to be making better records, and they should focus on building a relationship with the DJ; don’t just come to him and say “play my record”.
Q: What next for the Fleet DJs?
A: Well for the Fleet DJ’s, we are going to be having our first DJ conference coming soon in Charlotte, NC. Our DJ’s will continue to do what they do best: break records. Plans are also in the works for a show on Sirius Radio real soon, and of course we will continue to bring the people the best music out on Fleet DJ Radio, which you can listen to on our wensite www.FleetDJs.com . Oh and the Fleet Models have a 2012 calendar coming real soon as well.
Q: What separates the Fleet DJs from other DJ crews?
A: We are family first, and then a DJ crew. We work together as a unit, and actually knowing the different DJ’s in the crew is what we stress. The main goal of theFleet DJ’s is to help our fellow DJ’s out first. We are a DJ crew, so the DJ comes first before any artist (laughs).
Q: What were some of your favorite projects you worked on?
A: Well you know I like doing anything involving models (laughs), but we have dropped so many dope mixtapes as a crew, not too mention all the other things we’ve done, I really don’t know if I can pick a favorite right now.
Q: How has the Internet affected the music biz ?? Do you think its had a Positive or Negative Impact on the game?
A: Well the Internet has definitely helped the biz out in both good ways and bad ways. On the one hand, it makes it easier to network with people and promote your brand or whatever you’re doing. On the other hand, it can hurt the biz because of illegal downloading and piracy and making it easier for the wack music to get out there as well (laughs)
Q: Ok, so lets talk best albums of 2011 for a minute. Which album was better in you opinion: “Watch The Throne” or “Tha Carter IV”?
A: Well, ummmm, they we’re about the same to me honestly (laughs).
Q: (Laughs) I hear that! So do you have any Shout-outs before we go?
A: Shout-out to all the Fleet DJ’s, our Fleet Artist, the Fleet Models, Staff, and everybody that rocks with the Fleet DJ’s. GoodFellaz TV, DJ Tommy Gunz, DJ Big A, Lady Kingpin, PR Kay Harris, Grindin’ Magazine and V-Blazin Magazine.