Hustle Harder: Callender

Hustler Harder artwork by John P. Dessereau


Introducing Hustle Harder, Okayfuture’s interview series with the movers, shakers, shape shifters, go between-ers, and more who grease the proverbial wheels of the electronic music world. I couldn’t think of anyone better to set things off than Callender, talent agent at AM Only, representing some of our favorite artists and doing so with a smile. Everyday hustling.

Name: Callender aka 365 aka No Days Off
Home Town: Staten Island
Born date: May 1st.
Profession: Full time agent at AM Only. Currently representing DJs: Baauer :: Bird Peterson :: Bondax :: Clockwork :: Congorock :: French Fries :: Green Lantern :: Jim-E Stack :: Just Blaze :: RL Grime :: Samo Sound Boy, and Live Artists: AlunaGeorge :: araabMUZIK :: Kilo Kish :: Mr. MFN eXquire :: What So Not.

What up Call. Thanks for being here. So when did you first fall in love with music?

Word. Had to have been back when my mom purchased The Chronic and A Tribe Called Quest’s Midnight Marauders. I remember distinctly feeling how ATCQ was not the same as Wu-Tang, and Dr. Dre & Snoop, who all my friends were listening to at the time. They were different, and it opened up a whole world of dope music to my ears. Looking back, it was my mom’s music taste that made me fall in love with all the different sounds and emotions music had to offer. She had Barry White records, Kenny G, and The Chronic all on the same CD rack. Moms is poppin’. Thanks mom!

When did you first fall in love with electronic music?

Hands down it was after hearing Daft Punk. They’re two of the dopest dudes. Honestly Skrillex also was one of the dudes to open my eyes to what’s possible with electronic music and made me love it.

You recently tweeted you were “legit the only black dance music agent in the game.”

That’s exactly what it is. It’s an on going joke with some of my friends/buyers. I’m like the Jackie Robinson of the dance music world, lol.

I’m not saying I’m doing anything extraordinary, but it sometimes seems like I’m the only kid with a real hip-hop background doing this dance shit. From where I’m from and I sell dance music? Plus I’m pretty fucking good at it.

Callender Tweet

Top 5 Hip/HopRap tracks RIGHT NOW:

1. GrandeMarshall – his entire project.. but “GODBPM” and “RFTPSTE215” put me in a dark place…
2. Nakim – “Olu” (don’t even know if this record is out but damn….)
3. A$AP Rocky – “Ghetto Symphony”
4. SchoolBoy Q – just about anything he does
5. Drake – “Started From The Bottom”

Where were you when Baauer broke the internet?

I was actually at his manager’s house in LA, ironically. Shit went viral and I honestly didn’t like it at first, as I interpreted the kids in one of the first videos as making fun of some shit that they really have no clue about. Then the joke just went full circle and turned into pretty much into just that, a joke, and not a bunch of people making fun of the real harlem shake.

Who’s hot to you right now?

This dude from Harlem named Nakim. GrandeMarshall out of Philly. I don’t really want to share that info man, because the stuff I like I want to sign, and I feel like if I say something these A&R’s will handcuff themselves to them.

ALSO – Bondax, AlunaGeorge, & French Fries. They’re on another level.

Trap has been hot for years, and especially blew up in 2012. Is being turnt up still cool?

Fuck yeah…. being turnt up is always going to be cool. It’s just going to be called something else. Remember getting crunk’d up? Same shit, just new producers, no dreads (shout out to Lil’ Jon). Even look at Trill, that word took on a new meaning sort of. Y2K Trill now, lol.

How many times a day do you get some sort of “let’s put it on the calendar” joke?

No comment.

Just Blaze is your boy these days. Are you guys playing tracks for each other? Who puts who on the most?

Man I still can’t believe Just is the homey. We bounce artist off each other. Can’t really say who puts who on more, I got so much I can gain/learn from him, but along the way I’m def dropping new shit on him that he def appreciates and fucks with.

Callender AM Only Interview

Biggest challenge of being an agent?

I’d say the biggest challenges are just always being ahead of the curve. Thinking of new ways of touring, different touring packages, etc. Lee Anderson is def the dude that I got that mindset from. Doing tours like The Train tour, and take-overs, etc.

House Party, Warehouse Party, or All Day Festival? Stay the fuck home.

As much as I’m often out and fucking up a club somewhere, I love to be home also. I love sports! So I’m always down to sit around and watch Sports Center all day. But definitely a house party over all. As an agent, festivals can get boring because you get stuck backstage and not really in the pit enjoying the music, like you’re supposed to be doing. Warehouses are dope, but way too dirty, I can’t fuck up my III’s. Plus I always have this phobia of stepping on a syringe or something.

Where do you see things going for 2013, and beyond?

Don’t know yet man. I’m trying to get that Toby Keith money. I’m going to move into this Country Music flow.


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