How to survive a life in music, by those who know best
Rev Run Rock and Rules

Founding member of hip-hop legends Run-D.M.C, Rev Run can truly say he is a pioneer of both music and fashion. Now a minister, solo artist and producer, his experience of the music industry is unique.

Being famous is intense
I wasn’t ready for the intensity of Run-D.M.C. - make an album, go on tour, make an album, go on tour and so on. I felt like there was no stopping. Managers will push you and you can’t take control of your life if you aren’t in control. I was just a kid, so I enjoyed it, but you do feel completely overwhelmed. I think in general, people don’t know when you’re exhausted. You just have to be careful and tell people that you’re tired, that’s the bottom line.

Enjoy life on the road
Touring is all good. After a while it can get a bit monotonous but it’s good. That energy of going out there, let’s conquer this, let’s win, is what it’s about. Homesickness can get you in the end. I’m on the road now, but I’d probably be just as crazy at home. That’s the truth. I just think what would I be doing at home now instead of here? Enjoy the moment while you can. It might only happen for two or three years and you’re really going to mess it up if you don’t enjoy it.

Don’t stay tied to the past
It can feel good sometimes, being known as a pioneer in music. But you don’t want to get caught in a time warp and that’s all they talk about - what you used to be. That’s not me. That’s not Rev Run. But if you only held on to Run-D.M.C. and that’s your whole life, for me that’s just not enough. I’m Rev Run now. I’m on Twitter - I do my thing. You don’t need to diversify - you should just go find out what your passion is now. Find out what are you supposed to be doing at this part of your life.

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Stay in the face of the label who signed you
Get into it. Make the record, make the video. Enjoy it. Go down to the label. Make sure that you’ve got the same hype there that you had when they signed you. Get the right manager, stay in there. Don’t get signed and then get lost at the label. When they sign you, you’ve got to stay in their face. Keep the hype going.

Make your own mistakes
You hear so many great things when you’re starting out: ‘Save your money, do this, do that.’ And you try your best to do it. You’re like, ‘Okay, I’m trying.’ But it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be able to handle it. It doesn’t mean it’s not going to fall apart. I don’t know if you want to listen as a kid. You want to experience foolishness sometimes. You can learn from your mistakes. You don’t want to listen to people tell you about their mistakes. I’m a preacher and I don’t know what to tell you, don't think I’m trying to teach you something. If you can grab something from me, good. I’m not just a preacher of doom and gloom - I’m an entertainer in my own right. It’s more like be inspired from my new Rev Run-ness.

Interview by Josh Jones

Follow Rev Run on Twitter @RevRunWisdom


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