The promoter’s world is a hustle unlike any other in the entertainment business. It’s either sink or swim, deliver or quiver, stay in or get the hell out. It takes a special breed of person to stay on its emotion charged beast that can deliver incredible highs but crashing lows if you stay a step ahead. That being said this interview is written in homage of one of Sydney’s most renowned and respected club / tour promoter and artist management powerhouse Sam Daoud, of Get Busy Productions.
This year marks his 20th year in the promotion game, which has proven the adage that if you stay focussed, stay true and work like tomorrow’s not promised, 20 years in Hip Hop will fly by in the spit of 16 bars! Sam and Get Busy has long been synonymous for throwing some of the hottest hip hop club nights in Australia, most achieving legendary status such as the never again duplicated FAT @ Gas Nightclub, a club night revered for putting on the dopest DJ’s, international artist performances and pure undiluted Hip Hop clubbing pleasure. Fat @ GAS proved to be the launch pad for Sam to go on and explore the world of tour promotion and bring the hottest international acts to Australia. From Naughty by Nature to DAS FX and Black Sheep, Get Busy has always delivered supreme Hip Hop at every turn.
He wears his love of Hip Hop with pride and still maintains the pure passion for what he does as if it were his first event. For a company that Daoud admits to have “started out of sheer boredom” has seen his humble dream turn into a lucrative reality, one that has secured him connections worldwide and solidify friendships with artists and the industry alike as being valued and respected. With two decades in an industry that is tougher than leather, Sam Daoud delivers his patrons promises to maintain the longevity his company has succeeded over the years. In between sculpting the career of one of Australian Hip Hop’s rising stars Miracle, to touring the US with New Zealands finest Savage, one thing remains consistant with Doaud – he does what he loves and loves what he does … for the love of Hip Hop!
Congrats on reaching 20 years of Get Busy Productions Sam – what an achievement!!! How does it feel to reach this milestone?
Thanks Miss Hennessy, to be honest it feels a little surreal. I never thought I would still be in the Music Industry at the age of 36. I feel blessed and grateful to have found something I honestly love doing.
Now for those that don’t know who Get Busy or Sam Daoud are can you take us on a trip back to how you first got started as a Hip Hop promoter in this city and how this journey has been for you over the last 2 decades?
Ok, when I was 16 years old we had literally nothing to do for entertainment except hang out at the local park or get up to no good.
I pretty much fell into this career out of sheer boredom. I had the idea to approach a local pub and ask if we could hold an under 18`s party for kids in the local area. The first event turned out to be such a success I decided to do it again. My progression has been fairly steady, under 18’s till I was old enough to run a club. When I was 18 I started the first R&B club on Oxford st. Ten years ago I did my first Concert , That was Public Enemy it was sold out, so that was encouraging.
Sam & Xhibit
You are a Hip Hop baby yes? What is it about the Hip Hop genre that connects with you and made you dedicate your life to it the way you have?
I would have to say I started out as a new jack swing baby really, but when I bought my first piece of music it was ‘Tougher than leather’- Run Dmc on cassette something profound happened I was deeply affected by rap. My first show I went to was Ice cube at the hordern and I got backstage thanks to Paul Cussen who was the manager of local group Skunkhour, meeting Ice Cube and speaking with him for about three minutes, Changed my life, there was no looking back after that.
Before the tour aspect of Get Busy really started popping off you built your respect and reputation up in this city for running some of the hottest clubs in town – namely Fat @ GAS – which was the cornerstone to Sydney’s Hip Hop nightlife. What are your favourite memories of Fat and what do you think attributed to that night’s massive success?
Fat Thursdays was a very special time in my life, you have to remember I was the fourth promoter who had a shot at that night in as many years. The pressure was on me to continue the success the club had enjoyed. I managed to not only continue the night but somehow make it the club of choice for every international touring artist at that time, the amount of superstars we had through those doors has not been replicated since. It made it impossible for another club to operate on the same night. I lost count of how many Thursday night clubs opened and shut in those five years.
What would you say are the highs and lows of being a Hip Hop tour promoter and why?
Highs would definitely be the people I worked with, the lows unfortunately is the exact same thing.
Looking back over the last 20 years – are there any things that stand out to you that you change or have done differently if you could? Or do you just chalk it up to experience and keep it moving?
I’ve learnt so much in this time but I’m not sure I would do much differently, I believe in no regrets and that everything happened for a reason. The lessons I`ve learnt have made me the man I am today.
Sam & Tyra Banks
What is your favourite Hip Hop group / artist that you have toured and why?
Favourite is hard because I have worked with so many amazing artists over the years I would hate to single out one, every tour has great memories associated with it. I still get a buzz out of working with someone that I listened to religiously when I was at school, played the tape so much it broke, memorised all the lyrics
What are your thoughts on the Australian Hip Hop industry and your role within this industry as being? Tell us a little about Get Busy Management and your artist roster?
The Australian Hip-Hop industry is a difficult thing to discuss because on one hand you have a few amazing artists and producers making great music, putting on massive tours and building huge fan bases. Then on the other hand you can talk about the lack of infrastructure or platform to launch new talent. The lack of understanding of the culture in mainstream media. The amount of talent that have no way of forging ahead in a country that does not get the corporate potential of our music. I currently manage two artists DJ Tikelz and Sydney rapper, Miracle. Rather than biting off more than I can chew which I’ve done in the past I’m going to concentrate on these two guys for a while.
Your top 5 favourite Hip Hop tracks / personalities / producers or DJ’s /Personalities?
I like Ice Cube and Vinnie Paz. tracks? You can’t go past Juicy by Biggie or Gin and Juice by Snoop. Producers? I like Dre and Premier. Dj`s? For me Jazzy Jeff is numero uno followed by Shortee blitz.
What’s next for Get Busy Productions and the next 20 years?
More parties more concerts, more fun and hopefully 20 more years of amazing support by the people of the most beautiful country in the world. If it was not for them there would be no need to do what I do.
For more information on Sam Daoud and Get Busy Productions follow on Twitter – @samgetbusy
Always Hip Hop.