"...I don’t believe in falling back at all, you know? So if you really are passionate about something, you just have to pursue it to the fullest and know to yourself that it’s going to work out and you will be successful doing it."
- Chris (The Jillionaire).
Who are you?
I don’t know; my mom’s first son? I am a DJ and I produce music sometimes and I guess that’s pretty much the extent of it right now.
What do you do for fun? What do you do for fulfillment?
Yeah I guess it’s kind of a little bit of both. I’m lucky enough to do what I like. I have a lot of fun doing what I do right now. I work with a great team, so it’s a little bit of both. But outside of that I... man, it’s difficult because I do a lot of traveling on my own, but I travel a lot for my job, so it’s difficult to separate what’s work and what’s fun. You know?
What is the ideology that drives what you do?
That’s a good question; I never really thought too much about it from an ideology standpoint. I think that I am just really lucky to kinda do what I like and to like what I do.
And I’m in an enviable position where I get to--other than my Major Lazer stuff (and even in that as well)--I get to pick and choose what projects I work on. Not everybody has that luxury, you know? I’m at a point right now where I get sent a lot of stuff that I like to do, and I get to choose to do stuff that I enjoy. So whether it’s working with brands that I like, establishing partnerships, or collaborating with other artists, I get to choose to do stuff that I like.
So what’s the governing ideology? Just to kinda do what you like and like what you do... As silly and as cliche as that may sound.
My whole thing right now at this stage in my life is to help facilitate other people who want to do that as well. Whether it’s working with lifestyle brands or just working with kids who want to make music, my whole thing is to help other people get to that point as well. I meet a lot of kids who are way more talented than me, but have less connections and less relationships than I do. A big part of what I’m good at is managing relationships, so if I can use a connect that I have to help put somebody on, that’s what it’s about, you know? From simple things like getting somebody’s music played or on to a mixtape, to things like helping them to get published so they can generate revenue by doing what they do best, doing what they like to do.
How did you arrive at this ideology?
I’ve just been a lucky dude. I wish there was a better story. I used to run a hospitality business in Trinidad. I used to run a little bar down there and I’ve always liked music; I used to DJ in college and when I was running the bar I would DJ in between acts and on off nights. It was something fun that I really liked to do and when I left the bar, I had an opportunity to get involved in more music stuff with somebody who was at the top of the game, so I hopped on it. And I’ve been able to keep doing that ever since. Now I’m in the process of parlaying that experience into some other stuff.
What advice can you offer someone who is searching for their own ideology?
Man, the thing is about that stuff is that it has to come from within. I wouldn’t know how to advise somebody to pursue their own path; you have to make your own decisions and make your own mistakes. I’ve been on this quit-school campaign, where we were all taught as kids that if you want to be in a creative industry or a culture industry you have to go to school and study something that you can fall back on, but I don’t believe in falling back at all. If you really are passionate about something, you just have to pursue it to the fullest and know to yourself that it’s going to work out and you will be successful doing it. And even if it means that you have to bust your ass or be broke for a little while, just keep at it because eventually you’re going to achieve some degree of self-fulfillment or somebody else is going to come along and say, “yo i really see the value in what you’re doing and I can help you to get to that next step.”
One of the three faces of Major Lazer, Chris (The Jillionaire) is a Trinidadian DJ/Producer based in Los Angeles, California.
fb: The Jillionaire