Subject: Adam Walker, Marketing Assistant
Interviewed by Rachel Cutler, Digital Marketing Intern
Adam, what is it like being the newest member of Fueled by Ramen? What do you love the most about it?
It’s extremely exciting! I couldn’t be more thrilled about being a member of this team. I feel so fortunate to have this opportunity because FBR has been one of my favorite labels since I was 15. I started on January 2nd so it is truly the definition of New Year; it’s all a little surreal. One of the coolest things is being able to work on stuff for some of the bands that I’ve been a longtime fan of, but also for the newer, emerging bands, like twenty | one | pilots - a lot of excitement surrounding those guys! The other aspect I love most thus far, is working with the people here. The team is amazing and the atmosphere is great. I’m so psyched to be a part of it and to work with everyone for the long haul!
What is a typical day like for you?
I’m still trying to figure out what a typical day is like for me, haha. It varies from day-to-day based on what day of the week it is, what meetings are happening, if artists are in town, etc. So far, my typical day consists of me arriving a little early to prepare myself. The quiet in the morning is a nice time to get my coffee and settle in for the day. I then I go over Katie, Adam, and Mike’s calendar, to get an idea of what their days are like and review my to-do list or any tasks I need to finish from the day before. I usually pick these up right away in the morning so I can get them done before more things come up. Once the day is underway, I start work on larger tasks, which can consist of Soundscan reports, updating artist one-sheets, going through customer service emails and webstore orders, or expenses. However, so many things come up on the spot on a given day while assisting Katie and Adam, making every day different than the last. A key part for me is getting all the little things done that come up, while balancing the larger tasks. The most efficient way I’ve found to do this, is to split up the larger tasks throughout parts of the day. Once Katie and Adam leave for the evening and I feel like I’ve got a good handle on everything and tackled my to-do list, I usually am out of the office in between 7 & 8pm; however, some days are later, some days are earlier. Other than that, you can count on the days always being filled with copious amounts of coffee, tea, and Spotify!
What was your journey like in getting to where you are now? What lead you to this point?
My journey to this point has been a long one. It all started when my mom got me my first drum set when I was 13. Since then, I started playing in a band with my best friends and absolutely knew that I needed to pursue music. When we were youngsters, we played punk and metal and then grew into pop music. I have always been in to music - doing musicals and playing percussion in band since I was very little; but it wasn’t until I got my drum set and started writing music that I knew this is what I have to do in life. As I started college, I was a little lost and hadn’t declared a major, and the band was still my main focus. But for school’s sake, I finally decided on graphic design by my sophomore year. The band got more serious my junior year and that February, I hadn’t done a lick of homework for the semester because I put all my time and effort into the band and finally had to break that news to my mom before my big projects were due. She shocked me by saying that I should take a break and pursue this; she’s been overwhelmingly supportive with all of my musical decisions! That spring and summer, we hit it hard but then fizzled out the following year. At that time, I was back in school, still studying graphic design, but just wasn’t happy and decided to do something about it. I then made the move to McNally Smith College of Music, where my focus shifted over to the business side of things. When I started there, I realized that I had been practicing some of those business techniques with the band, and just didn’t realize it. That experience gave me a great head start at McNally, and I was finally happy with what I was doing and really got on a roll with everything. After two semesters there, I came out to NYC where I interned for Fueled By Ramen and artist manager, Doug Lefrak. That’s my story and now, here I am!
What bands are you into right now? Any band that will always make the top 5?
This fall, I was really in to the new Go Radio album and I still find myself listening to that a lot. I’m also on a big Gym Class Heroes kick – I got in to The Papercut Chronicles II a little late, but 'The Fighter' has definitely been an anthem of mine for the past 5 months. I’ve been listening to more hip-hoppy/alternative stuff like this lately, including Dessa and her hip-hop collective group Doomtree (from MN), twenty | one | pilots, and I’m still rocking Kanye’s Good Music Cruel Summer.
I always go in waves - sometimes I’ll be into soft rock, such as Matt Nathanson, Parachute, or Bon Iver and other times I’ll only be into metal and probably listening to August Burns Red, For Today or Our Last Night. Other than that, you’ll always find pop/rock in my most recently played.
And lastly, a couple of bands that will always make my top 5 include Taking Back Sunday, A Day To Remember and Mayday Parade.
If you could be anything you wanted (besides working at Fueled By Ramen) EVER, what would it be? Why?
Well, when I was kid I either wanted to play in the NFL or the NBA. I loved sports and thought I could be a professional athlete. They were a huge part of my life throughout school, but obviously I wasn’t going to be a pro! If you would have asked me this question two years ago, I would have said the ONLY thing I want is to be a successful drummer, tour and be part of a band. That’s been the big dream for me for the past 9 years until the band I was in stopped playing and I switched my focus over to the business side of the music industry. I’ve always been a performer of some sort and have played music forever, so my answer is: ROCK STAR! However, if I wasn’t into the music thing, I would definitely pursue a career in communication sciences and disorders or special education. This is a newly discovered passion of mine which started about three years ago when I began mentoring a child with autism. If my heart wasn’t set on music and I was to start college over again, this is definitely what I would be doing. It is the most joyous and fulfilling thing to be around such imaginative children and be able to watch them grow on a daily basis.
Thank you to The IMPOSSIBLE Project for providing film for this photo!