10 Questions with ... Dontay Thompson
March 19, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- KWIN/KWNN 1995-1999 (Late Nights/MD)
- KXJM 1999-2002(Nights/MD)
- Radio & Records 2002-2005 (Rhythm Editor)
- RCA Music Group 2005-2008
- Bad Boy Records 2008-2009 (VP/Promotion)
- eOne 2011-present (SVP/Promotion)
1. When did you begin to think that there was a place for you in this business besides being a radio programmer?
As soon as I started programming radio I felt there was a place for me. To the outside world you never know what goes on behind the scenes at a radio station. Always being a fan of music, radio allowed me to get a full understanding of the role it plays in exposing some of our favorite records to the masses. Getting my first job as a Music Director allowed me to also understand the importance the labels played with providing music to radio stations. That is when I really felt I would always have a place in this business.
2. At what point did you begin to see yourself possibly running a promotion department at a record company?
I learned alot working at J Records under Richard Palmese and Michael Williams. Learning under them gave me the foundation I needed to eventually run a promotion department. Also since I started in radio I've had the pleasure of being promoted by some of the best and worse of promotion executives. Through those experiences I've learned that someone has something to offer in making you the best that you can be rather it's a good or bad. Continuing to learn is key.
3. When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a correctional officer or something to do in law enforcement.
4. How did you end up in Stockton at KWIN?
It was completely unexpected how I ended up there. I listened to KWIN and they were giving away a free Mustang convertible at a sticker stop not too far from my job. While on break, I went to register to win. Once I got there I was approached by the on-air jock who was broadcasting live about them needing street team members and how I should try applying for it. Long story, short, that's how I got my start. Had I not gone to register to win that Mustang convertible, I could have been a cop pulling you over instead. LOL!
5. You've been living in New York for awhile now. What do you love most about New York?
New York is honestly the best city EVER! The cultural diversity is one of the things I love most. With that comes learning from different people about their traditions and the food they eat. I could go on about so many other things but that is top of the list.
6. What challenges do you face at eOne?
Our challenges are continuing to find and partner up with the right artists so that all sides benefit. I don't think that is any different from any other record label out there. I feel there is a shortage of career artists out there, as well. That isn't just a eOne challenge, that is a music industry challenge. We need to seek out more real musicians that are passionate and driven.
7. If you had to hire two regional promotion guys but they had to be in radio, who would you go after?
This is a easy one, I would hire Ebro at Hot 97/New York and Julie Pilat at KIIS/Los Angeles because I feel they are both music purists. I believe they both understand the artist development process and know what it takes to connect the dots to really break an artist on various levels.
8. What do you like to do in your spare time?
Spare time? What's that?
9. Hypothetical question...If you were getting married in two months and you could have any group or singer perform at your reception, who would you choose?
Prince with The Roots as the band. Now that would be super dope!!!
10. Who have been some of your biggest influences/mentors in the music promotion business?
Mark Adams, Alan Grunblatt, Ebro, Michael Williams, Richard Palmese, Rick Sackheim, Michael Newman and Gary Spangler.
What's coming up in the near future from eOne?
We have various projects on deck from DJ Drama, Rocko, Brian McKnight, Donnell Jones, etc but I'm really excited about Jake Miller. He's our newest addition to the eOne roster and I feel his potential will be limitless.