Category Archives: From My Experience

Woo-Hoo! I Found A New Web Host!

Web Hosting Can Be Confusing

You already know what I’ve been going through with my web hosting issues lately, so I’ll spare you the recap (you can view my previous posts) and get right into it.

I received a lot of great referrals and have spoken to a TON of hosting companies over the past 2 weeks: BlueHost, MediaTemple, Choopa, DreamHost, SurpassHosting, GoDaddy, etc. The list literally goes on and on.

I contacted ALL of them. It took me forever but I did it. One reason was because I wanted to really get my feet wet and find out what was being offered but also because I wanted to understand what I needed.

I’m not the most technical person in the world but I can tell when someone is just trying to sell, so I contacted them all to ask them the same questions over and over again so I can hear multiple replies and learn about this stuff.

They say the only way to learn something is to ask questions; so that’s what I did.

The main thing I learned from all this: the web hosting industry might be very competitive, but it’s not very innovative.

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Wow HostGator. Just Wow.

*Note: I originally posted this on Tuesday, however my blog wasn’t fully transported to my new webhost, so even though it showed up in RSS feeds everywhere; that post has been lost in cyberspace. This is a repost.*

If you visited my site anywhere between 1am and 10pm yesterday, you probably saw something that looked like this:

Domain Redirected To A Generic Search Portal

Obviously, this had me in FUMES given the very recent issues I’ve been having with HostGator, so I contacted them via their online live chat.

This is how the conversation went:

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Dreams Can Come True

Martin Luther King Jr. & Barack Obama - Dreams Can Come True

"The greatest achievements were at first and for a time dreams." - James Allen

Last night was a truly historic evening.

Most of us were overcome with so much emotion, it was and still is difficult to express our sentiments with words.

I recently discussed what Barack Obama represents for many of us; that he provides proof of the idea that we can do anything.

Although my post was quite brief, it inspired some great conversations with some friends, so I thought I’d delve a little further into the topic.

This has nothing to do with politics.

This is about having dreams, keeping faith and accomplishing goals.

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Keeping Backups In Case Disaster Strikes

I just wanted to drop a quick post to let you guys know that I finally got my MacBook Pro back!

I got it back last week actually; 11 days after it decided to die. I wanted to post sooner, but since it was my hard drive that crashed, I’ve spent the past week just catching up on projects and re-creating files from scratch.

Not fun.

Needless to say, I definitely made it a point to pick up an external hard drive to keep a full system backup of everything in my laptop.

I wasn’t sure what brand or model to go with, so I posed the question on Twitter and everybody led me toward the trio of Western Digital, Maxtor and LaCie.

After some consideration at the store, I decided to go with a 750GB LaCie hard disk. The box says it was designed by industrial designer, Neil Poulton.

His design?

A shiny black box.

750GB LaCie External Hard Drive

Anyhow, it serves me right to experience this situation. If you take your business seriously, invest in it appropriately and make sure you’re well covered in case of ANY emergency or disaster.

Whenever you implement any new tool or piece of equipment into your business, make sure to have a way of still functioning in case it malfunctions or gets stolen.

Luckily, I have my business email hosted through Google Apps, so all email that goes through my email or the email of anybody else on my team, is backed up online – free.

We can even share documents and edit them collectively, in real time, as opposed to emailing a document to each team member and having 5 different edits.

If you’re running a small business, or consider yourself a business (even if it’s just you), I highly suggest checking out Google Apps. It’s free and it’s a lifesaver.

Not Saving Anything For The Way Back

I was running around doing some errands yesterday, and while walking towards the cash of an electronics store, I noticed a bin of DVDs for sale.

At the very top, as if just placed there perfectly for me, was Gattaca.

DVD of Gattaca with Ethan Hawke, Uma Thurman & Jude Law

This movie right here, is one of my favourite movies period.

It’s a little old now (came out in 1997) and it’s a bit slow-paced, but the concept and message in this movie are incredible.

Without giving away any spoilers, Gattaca is about a society that lives in a “perfect” world. Parents choose how they want their babies; everything from what gender the child will be, to the colour of their eyes.

Basically, they order their kids as if they were ordering furniture.

Anyways, in this perfect world, there are a few “imperfect” humans or “defects” who end up trapped in a life without any opportunities or any possibilities of success.

The main character is a “defect” who ends up finding a way of sneaking into the superior class of society and completely defies his life plan.

He’s one of the best at what he does and nobody has a clue that he’s actually a defect.

It’s an incredible movie that really points out the fact that no matter who you are or who others think you are, you can do ANYTHING.

NOTHING is impossible and regardless of your past or present; the ONLY THING getting in the way of having EVERYTHING you have EVER wanted and everything that you have ever dreamed of, is YOUR OWN BELIEF.

Ignore everybody that says otherwise.

EVERYBODY.

Sometimes that has to include loved ones. Your family and friends will always say they support you and believe in you, but truth is, there are usually limits to their belief.

Plus, if they don’t fully believe in themselves, how can they fully believe in you?

It’s a bold statement, but it’s true.

People will always remind you of “who you are”, but the reality is that’s only the perception of who you are. You can be anybody and anything you want to be. Not to sound corny, but it’s true.

It really hit me when I first moved to a different city. I had never been there before in my life and didn’t really know anybody there. I decided to use this to my advantage and become a new me. Shed all my bad habits and develop new ones. I was a stranger to everybody so nobody would be able to say “that’s not you”.

I became a completely new person.

I gained a whole new sense of self-confidence. And that self-confidence allowed me to realize that I was FAR more capable than I ever realized before.

Even if you aren’t moving to a new city and you’re always around people who know your habits and your “abilities”; you can still become a “new you”.

What’s the worst that will happen? People will comment? Some might crack jokes and try to ridicule you?

So?

Let them be negative. That’s not your issue; it’s theirs.

They don’t have enough confidence or belief to be the best version of themselves, so they’re going to try and keep you down as well. Misery likes company, right?

If you allow that to affect you, it’s not them holding you back; it’s you. You have to make sure that NOTHING stops you.

This movie is an incredible visualization of that. And it doesn’t just have to be a movie or a story. It can be reality, and it is reality, but it’s just up to you to let it be.

One of my favourite lines (there are many great quotables in the movie) is during a scene where the main character (“the defect”), is swimming in a race against a “perfect specimen” and is winning. The perfect specimen asks the defect how he’s able to continue swimming for so long and with such stamina. The defect replies “I never saved anything for the way back”.

I love that line.

And it’s true. Most of us do that. We create this “exit strategy” in our minds whenever we approach a new task. A “Plan B.”

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t have a Plan B. That’s okay, but 9 times out of 10, people only have a Plan B because they don’t truly believe in their Plan A. They’re preparing themselves for failure.

Why?!

Maybe it’s just me, but I can’t prepare myself for failure.

Anybody who knows me knows how intense I can get. For me, it’s all or nothing.

I’m either going to die successful or die still working on it. But no matter what, when I die, nobody will ever be able to say I didn’t give it my all.

The main character in this movie said “I Never Saved Anything For The Way Back”.

Kurt Cobain said “It’s Better To Burn Out Than Fade Away”.

Malcolm X said “By Any Means Necessary”.

Tupac said “Against All Odds”.

Hell, even Nike’s motto is “Just Do It”.

There’s so many of these quotes, but they all have the same message, “GO FOR IT!”

Whatever motivates you, whatever gets you going, whatever pushes you to go that extra mile; just find it and use it every single chance you get, because there is NOTHING that is holding you back from defying all odds and acheiving all your dreams.

Believe in yourself and anything is possible.

ANYTHING.

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

The other day, Asher Roth, his manager Scooter Braun, and I were discussing some business, and took a minute to just chat.  During our convo, Asher was telling me that he’s constantly asked questions about his buzz and the amount of exposure he’s been getting.

He always responds, “you’re only as good as your team”.

I couldn’t agree more.

It got me thinking I should do a quick post to address the most common misunderstanding about my involvement with Asher’s career.

For the record, I’m not his manager, nor am I the only person pushing him.

Yes, I am working with them on marketing Asher and making sure everybody knows about him, but I am part of a team.

I do what I do, but I’m not a solo act.

I see why it would be easy for people to get confused though. My blog revolves around my career in the music business, I talk about Asher often (here and on Twitter), and I’m servicing many blogs with Asher Roth content – so why wouldn’t somebody jump to that conclusion?

Plus, for years, we have been exposed to so much spotlight-hogging and “one man army” crap in the media, that whenever we keep seeing the same person attached to or speaking about an artist, people automatically assume that person does everything themselves.

Actually, before I get carried away on that tip, I’ll stop and save it for another post.

When we dropped Asher’s “The Greenhouse Effect” with Don Cannon and DJ Drama, the net blew up and everybody’s been talking about him ever since. That’s something we all know and have witnessed firsthand.

Asher Roth & Scooter Braun

That project isn’t something that took an entire major label staff to execute. As a matter of fact, it was just a few of us working independently – without label support.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not taking anything away from SRC (Asher’s recording home). In fact, their crew is one of the few in this business that actually understands how to properly support their artists – but this was all done before the label even had to get involved in Asher’s project – while they were focusing on other acts.

It’s called pre-release/buzz marketing.

Pre-release/buzz marketing is about building up enough attention and enough of a fanbase for an artist BEFORE the label begins pushing them in anticipation for the album release.

This way, when the label looks at their upcoming release schedule, they can see which one of their signed artists has more buzz and then they can decide how to allocate their resources.

More buzz before the album = more label support for the album = more chance of having a successful album.

Asher’s album is slated for an early 2009 release, yet he’s amongst the label’s top priorities and everywhere you look on the net, you see the name “Asher Roth”.

But don’t get it twisted. Even the strongest team can’t push something that nobody believes in.

We just put the word out, but it’s the fans and bloggers who believe in Asher that make this movement.

An audience that believes in you, is one of the most valuable assets you can ever attain. Scratch that, an audience that believes in you IS THE MOST VALUABLE asset you can ever attain.

Everybody who downloaded The Greenhouse Effect, everybody who keeps Asher Roth in rotation on their iPods, everybody who talks about him on Facebook, MySpaceTwitter, everybody who blogs about him or mentions him to their friends – you are part of this team. So shout out to you.

Also, shout out to Dana & Kathryn at Biz3, who are handling Asher’s publicity and doing a great job at it. They’re working with other artists like The Cool Kids, Kid Sister, A-Trak and Chromeo; so they definitely know what they’re doing!

And of course, Asher’s manager/label head, Scooter Braun.

I’m actually planning on featuring Scooter on the site real soon, so I’ll save some of the background info for then, but just know that he’s the man with the plan, when it comes to Asher’s career.

Speaking of that, Scooter recently acquired another incredible talent that I’d like to introduce you to: Justin Bieber.

For a while now, I’ve been paying attention to this young cat on his YouTube channel. He’s from Canada, so I have a sense of pride seeing his fanbase continue to grow.

Justin’s become the most subscribed Canadian musician on YouTube, and one of the most subscribed musicians on YouTube worldwide, with about 50,000 subscribers and 21.5 million video views.

Let me repeat that: 21.5 MILLION video views!

Once you check out his videos, you’ll understand why he’s so popular. Oh and by the way… he’s only 13 years old!

I’d been following him for a while, so when Scooter told me he signed him; it just seemed incredibly coincidental to me.

Just the other day, he played me a rough mix of some of Justin’s new songs and to say I was amazed would be an understatement. The songs are great and Justin’s voice is just incredible.

Remember where you heard it from first; Justin Bieber is going to be MAJOR!

I just realized how long this post has gotten so let me leave it here.

The buzz for Asher has been incredible, but you have to give credit where credit is due, so I just wanted to drop a quick post to respond to the confusion and acknowledge the others involved.

Thanks for reading, thanks for all the support of Asher Roth, and remember to pay attention to Justin Bieber.

Check out these links for more info:

Justin Bieber – http://www.youtube.com/user/kidrauhl

Asher Roth – http://thedailykush.ning.com

Moe Arora – http://moearora.com

Biz 3 Publicity – http://www.biz3.net

Rockstar Branded – http://rockstarbranded.com

SRC Records – http://srcrecords.net

Asher Roth, Scooter Braun & Justin Bieber

MTV & 50 Cent Are Stalking Me And Other Updates

I just wanted to drop you guys a quick line to update you on a few things and fill you in on this MTV & 50 Cent situation:

MTV & 50 Cent Are Stalking Me!

Finally all those random emails and messages I’ve been getting about casting calls makes sense.

Turns out, MTV and 50 Cent are doing a new show called “Mogul In The Making”. But a lot of people seem to be confused, so let me officially say, I am in no way involved with MTV and 50 Cent’s “Mogul In The Making” show.

The concept of their show is pretty much the same as the original concept for MakingTheMogul.com. When launching this site, I decided to launch as a blog since it’s a more feasible approach than video for me to share my journey.

I actually wrote a quick explanation about what motivated me to launch this blog on another site a little while back. I’ll find the exact post and paste it here soon.

It just vexes me that I almost registered that domain also (just for safekeeping), but decided against it. I even have a category on here titled, “Mogul In The Making”.

Ah well… gotta keep it moving!

Pssst… 50… Judy. Scrap the auditions. Holler at me and we’ll do it up EdTV style.

Free Kush on Friday the 13th

I’m hyped up for next Friday, June 13th, 2008. That day marks a very important day in the history of hip-hop. It marks the release of…

Asher Roth‘s new mixtape, The Greenhouse Effect, with DJ Drama & Don Cannon.

This mixtape is going to be bananas! And it’s true what they say, the best things in life are free.

To get the free download of Asher Roth‘s “The Greenhouse Effect” on June 13th, make sure to check out http://thedailykush.com.

On The Hunt For A Rebound

I’ve finally had it with my computer. If it freezes, automatically reboots or overheats once more (which it does for no reason and comes with a LOUD siren noise), I will send this useless thing flying out the window to be ran over by a city bus.

This computer acts like my ex-girlfriend; it’s always heated, very unpredictable in its actions, never stops yelling, and rarely acts right when I need it to most.

After 3 years of trying to make it work, I’m done.

A lot of people have been suggesting a MacBook but I’ve also been getting a ton of suggestions about a few PC laptops like the IBM Thinkpad series and the Toshiba Satellite series.

What do you suggest?

I need a solution fast, before I break my foot kicking my current tower… again.

I Will Reply Soon!

Thank you to everyone who emailed me in response to the “Mogul’s Network” post. Things have been really crazy recently (I’ll fill you in soon enough), but I promise to reply to everyone who’s contacted me.

That’s it for now.

Bless.