I hear you were an Eminem fan growing up a kid – what are some of your earliest memories of music?
I’m a huge Eminem fan. There’s a lot of passion and transparency in his music. Many people can relate. He’s never afraid to rap about controversial topics like his family problems, politics, and society in general. Just listening to Eminem, for me, brings back many early memories of happiness, partying, conversations, and many other things I won’t mention
Nashville has always been the home of country music, but today it’s a hub for music of all kinds, tell us what it was like growing up there and how you came across hip hop music?
Growing up in Nashville definitely sparked my interest in music. I have said many times that music is just in my culture. I was drawn to hip hop in particular because I can relate to the music.
Where did the name Huffyjames come from?
My last name is Hough. It’s kind of hard to spell so people always spelled it Huff. I was always called by my last name and then it got adjusted to Huffy over the years. When I made my Instagram, I just put Huffyjames as a username not thinking anything of it. Once I gained a following, new people would call me by my Instagram name and that stuck. I went from Huffy to Huffyjames and that became my nick name.
What inspired your move from Nashville to Florida?
I knew I wanted to be in the music industry because I was around music my whole life. I would have parties at my house, turn on my car with four 18 inch subs, get some kegs, and party until we couldn’t. I just wanted to do that on a bigger scale. While Nashville is known for music, Miami is known for the parties. So, I made some connections in Florida, took a leap of faith, and made the move. The rest is history now.
Executive brand ambassador for the biggest hip hop festival in the world? That’s incredible – how did it all come about?
I was close friends with Matt and Tariq before they started Rolling Loud. We all have a profound love for hip hop music. With that friendship, the connections I have internationally, and my faith in the rolling loud brand, I became executive brand ambassador. I can honestly say Rolling Loud is my love and passion just as it is theirs. Words can’t describe how much this means to me. I am blessed and grateful to be executive brand ambassador, helping build an international brand.
What does a typical day for you look like – are you on the go day/night?
My day never ends. I am always by my phone to make sure artists are set up in all aspects whether it’s travel, accommodations, interviews, etc… Sometimes that means I’m up at 4am because I’m in a different time zone and need to be in communication. I’m also always on the look for new talent. All this requires a lot of travel. When I’m traveling, I go out to nightclubs and different venues to promote Rolling Loud. I’m always on the go, I sleep very little, and I love every minute of it.
Hip Hop is a much about music as it is about culture, what does Rolling Loud look for in its brand/influencer partnerships?
We look for brands with similar values. We are very clear about that. Rolling loud brings people and music together so why not bring brands and Influencers together too? It’s a true partnership, not just a sponsor. Rolling loud gives many artist a chance to showcase their talents live. We partner with a viewing platform, audiomack that also believes in giving upcoming artists exposure. Of course, we also partner with media outlets like Liv Nightclub and Live Nation to create an even better experience for our guests.
Social media and influencers have become such a huge part of how events are promoted these days. Who have been amongst your favourite brands/influencers to work with?
My favorite person to work with is Matt Zingler. While he is the owner of Rolling Loud, he is also an influencer. He always had this vision to throw a huge rap concert. He created a brand out of a “party”. It [Rolling Loud] happens to be the largest hip hop festival in the world now. He works very hard and never gave up. He’s a great friend and has taught me a lot business wise.
Your job has taken you all around the world – where has been your favourite place to work. Any clubs that stand out for our worldly readers?
Club E11even in Miami has to be one of my favorite. They book a lot of hip hop artists and have an incredible production team. The performances are some of the best I’ve ever seen due to the intimacy, the atmosphere, the energy, and of course the music. One of my favorite and most memorable performances at E11even was Post Malone. They brought a keg to his table and people were doing keg stands. This attention to detail is another reason E11even stands out. They take clubbing to the next level and cater to the artists’ needs.
What is it like hanging with some of the biggest artists in the world? Do you pinch yourself everyday?
Im a very friendly and social person which has allowed me to easily create friendships with many artists. Once we become friends, it’s just like I’m hanging with any another friend. I don’t get star struck anymore. I always dreamed of hanging with these artists as a kid and now it’s a reality. I am extremely humbled and couldn’t be more thankful to wake up everyday and live the life that I live.
Lastly, I know 2020 has been tough planning, but what’s in store and what can fans expect at the next Rolling Loud?
All I can say is that the next rolling loud will be the best one yet. We were so sad not to be able to deliver this year that we would like to make it worth the wait for our Rolling Loud fam.