Breaking into the music industry as a director and being successful can be one of the most challenging journeys. Director Ali has defied the odds and established himself as a top producer, music video director, and brand manager. He shares one of the most fascinating and inspiring stories and there is so much to learn from his journey.
He ventured into the music industry in 2011 as an artist and had a decent run. He had to give up as an artist due to personal reasons but did not give up hope of working in the industry completely. Instead, he offered to help his younger brother, B Young, who was working on his music catalog then. What started as a simple helping gesture ended up being a management deal. They worked together scaling it to creatively direct B Young’s entire career. B Young handles the audio part while Ali takes charge of everything that is visual. 2017-2018 was the breakthrough period for them and things started to fall in place for the duo.
Director Ali started working with some of the bigger production teams and record labels around the world. It was a learning experience that elevated his understanding of how things worked in the music industry. He learned, built, and perfected his craft in production, shooting, and directing music videos but still enjoyed managing artists.
He did not like the way some directors were branding the artists he was managing. He felt that it was more important to understand the brand and the character of the artist to represent them correctly. With a passion for visual representation and branding, he geared up, picked up a camera, and got into music video directing.
Ali is very particular with the artists he works with. He prefers being involved in the career of the artists to understand their style to make suitable music videos for them. Working with B Young has been one of his greatest career highlights. He has also worked with Billy Billions as he was involved in Billy’s management team.
As a successful video director and brand manager, Ali believes that any equipment can deliver. What matters is the idea and imagination that the director has in mind. He had used a lot of cameras throughout his career. He uses those that are available to him and make his work easier as he likes to operate as a one-man show.
The future of music videos looks exciting as there is easier access to the best equipment and more convenience. According to him, this is the best time for young creatives to enter the industry and make an impact. Ali has thoughts of venturing into filmmaking in the future. But he intends to start by incorporating a few elements of filmmaking into music videos and gradually making the shift to filmmaking.
Collaborating with fellow directors is something he looks forward to. Ali hopes to work with Director X, Meji Alabi, and KLVDR. He also aspires to work with some of the big names in the music industry such as Burna Boy, WizKid, and Drake.