Music tycoon visits campus to share keys to success

“I’m making it happen,” said Kevin Liles using his key slogan for life.

Thursday, Endustry Power Players (EPP) brought Kevin Liles to FAMU’s campus to discuss his journey from intern to president.

Kevin Liles, who is now the Executive Vice President of Warner Music Group, kept the crowd involved in part to his D.J Reggie Reg who throughout the night took the students back in time with hip hop music that is timeless. Liles gave examples of his life and how he made simple mistakes that college students today make. Moreover he demonstrated that people can achieve their highest potential by putting in the time and effort.

“Liles gave the students empowerment and education on something that they otherwise probably wouldn’t know about,” said Michael Tate a sophomore pharmacy student from Memphis, Tennessee.

Liles discussed how rather than becoming a product of his environment and sticking to the four corners of his life (his mothers house, the liquor store, the church and the drug corner), he wanted to become something positive.

According to Liles, he knew that he could offer the entertainment world something different, because he had formal education and education of life. Liles continued with his persistence and networking and soon got in the offices of Def Jam.

“Who you are tomorrow depends on how you work today, that’s how you hustle,” Liles said.

Liles illustrated how he went two years without pay to work for Def Jam, “I wanted it that bad I ate, walked and slept my position,” Liles said.

With that, he was offered the position of president in 1996 but he didn’t take on the enormous responsibility until 1998.

Liles had seen a lot throughout his years at Def Jam and at Warner Music Group and he wanted to share it with the youth of today. Because of that, he wrote a book, “The Hip-Hop Generation Guide to Success,” in which he discusses his ten rules for making it happen and other tips for becoming successful.

“There is nothing telling you how to really get money,” Liles said. “They only tell you about the impossibility not the possibility.”

“I really enjoyed this event, Kevin showed how important it is to stay focus on your goals and even to look beyond that goal,” said Patrice Parker, a senior business administration student from Miami, as she held her newly bought book.

“I’m happy to see people coming out wanting to learn something different,” said Amir Windom who is the founder of Endustry Power Players on FAMU’s campus.

Leaving “Kevinland” as Kevin Liles likes to call it he let the students know that “Nobody should stop you from your dreams and when you see your dream is a reality you can sit back and smile because you made it happen.”

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