Encouragement Speaker Derrick Hayes gives a DERRICK Interview by asking 7 questions through each letter of his first name to give you an insightful perspective from other experts, entrepreneurs, celebrities and up and coming super stars.
Today’s DERRICK Interview is with Chris Kelley who was born and raised Nashville native with a heart for hip hop music and culture. Cella as they call him is 29 years old and still chasing his dream of a music career all while being a dad and attending Berklee College of Music online.
*D is for Dream*. What is your dream, goals or what have you achieved?
My dream is to make it in the hip hop and rap industry. My goals are made
weekly or monthly (small goals) to help me achieve the big goal known as
“the dream”. I have already made a name for myself in many cities across
the U.S. and also have a fan base in Africa, Ukraine, Turkey, Costa Rica,
and Japan that I made threw social networking and marketing myself.
*E is for Education*. What is your educational background and how do you use it daily?
I already have an associates degree in business which has helped me market
myself a lot and has helped me to spend money wisely when it comes to my
music business choices. I am currently attending Berklee School of Music
Online. I am studying music production with the goals of remaining
independent like some of my biggest inspirations in the rap industry: Tech
N9ne, Rittz, Twizted Insane and all of Strange Music.
*R is for Resource*. What resources do you bring to the table that makes you unique or stand out?
Well, I am a white guy in the hip hop industry for starters. Some may say that doesn’t make you stand out but I disagree. How many white rappers can you name that have blown up and been signed to major labels in the past 5 years? It is a shark tank for us and the fact that we are willing to jump into that pool of primarily African American sharks dominating the game says a lot about our character and drive. I’m not scared of anything including rejection and negative comments. I push on.
*R is for Ready*. When did you realize you were ready for what you are doing now?
When my dad first handed me a cassette player with the newest Master P album in it back in like 1995 or so. I knew immediately I would have something to do with this culture band industry and by age 13 was battle rapping and by age 21 had been offered free recording from many studios in Nashville and even some smaller independent record deals.
*I is for Individual*. Name at least one individual in your network that others should learn more about and why?
Highrolla Krush. He has been a mentor to me in the past few years and recorded my first album titled Deep Waters. He has taught me a lot and is an amazing producer. The dude has worked with Haystack, Jellyroll, Lil Wyte, 3 6 Mafia and many more big names. He cares about what he does and cares about others dreams too.
*C is for Challenges*. What challenges have you had to overcome?
I am still overcoming the biggest challenge of my life right now which is Anxiety. I was officially diagnosed with social anxiety and that put a skretching hault on my music for two years. It wasn’t until 6 months ago that I even started writing again and now I am excited to announce that my second full length album titled The Homecoming will be released this Summer.
*K is for Key*. What keys to success can you leave for upcoming
entrepreneurs and leaders?
I am not one to give advice on success because I haven’t even touched the surface of it yet. What I can say though is that if you have a dream the YOU have to chase it and YOU have to make it happen. No one and I mean no one will come along and place your dream in your lap in a nicely wrapped gift box. If you want something then go get it and don’t listen to the people who say you can’t.
Visit Cella for more information.