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— Make it Happen: The Hip Hop Generation Guide to Success: A Must-Read Guide For Today’s Aspiring Movers And Shakers —

Kevin Liles’ meteoric rise from intern at Def Jam Records to Executive Vice President of Warner Music Group — the largest independent music content company in world — is legendary in the music industry, and Liles announced today the release of a book entitled “Make it Happen: The Hip Hop Generation Guide to Success”. Co-written with Samantha Marshall, a senior staff Reporter for Crain’s New York Business, in the book, Liles serves up “Ten Rules for Making It Happen,” advising tomorrow’s moguls and managers on what to do and how to do it.  Full of eye-opening real-world anecdotes from Liles’ life, the book advises readers on how to find something that you want badly enough to make you work harder than you ever imagined possible, how to strategize and look ahead, how to embrace a hard-knock life and learn from failure, how to broaden your horizons and learn to work with people form all walks of life, and much more.  

Liles shares real life stories on how as partners with Russell Simmons and Lyor Cohen, he together with Def Jam Music grew from a fledgling million-dollar boutique label into a world-beating, multi-million-dollar brand that transcends demographics and is recognized around the globe.  Liles has worked with the biggest names in hip hop, including Jay Z, P. Diddy, Method Man, and Ja Rule.  Simply put, Liles knows how to make it happen.  And now, he’s sharing the wealth – the wealth of knowledge and expertise he’s gleaned from fifteen years in business.

Today, at WMG, Liles is part of an executive team poised to reshape the music industry. He joins Edgar Bronfman Junior and his old mentor, Lyor Cohen, as one of the most powerful men in the music industry, presiding over a collection of the world’s best-known record labels, including Atlantic and Warner Bros. as well as the group’s distribution, marketing and music publishing companies.     

From the Book:

Rule 1:  Find Your Will  
Look deep inside to discover that thing you really love to do…
Rule 2:  Do You    
Discover your own flava, then package it and present it to the world…
Rule 3:  Walk This Way  
Get educated, find a mentor, read and research…
Rule 4:  Create A Blueprint  
Create a vision of what you want from life and draw a roadmap to success…
Rule 5:  Play Your Position  
Have the humility to do your job and then some…
Rule 6:  Feel the Struggle  
Love the hard times because they make you stronger, wiser, and more willing to take risks…
Rule 7:  Get Connected  
Build relationships to last forever…
Rule 8:  Mix It Up  
Be open to people from all walks of life…
Rule 9:  Don’t Let Cash Rule  
Greed will only trip you up…
Rule 10: Flex Purpose, Not Power  
It’s never too early to learn how to lead…

Kevin Liles Bio:



Kevin Liles is Executive Vice President of Warner Music Group (WMG) and is one of the most influential executives in the music business.  At WMG, Liles brings his 15 years of vast expertise in the urban and rock music genres as well as in marketing and brand extension to bear on WMG’s corporate operations.  His career began in 1986 when he penned the multi-platinum, award-winning single “Girl You Know It’s True” written with his group Numarx and performed by Milli Vanilli. In 1989, he co-founded Marx Brothers Records, releasing several regional hits by his group Numarx while also opening for such acts as LL Cool J, Salt ‘N Pepa, Rob Base and Run DMC. In 1991 he began his career at Def Jam as an unpaid intern in the Mid-Atlantic region.

Quickly proving himself to be an invaluable asset, he was given the position of Mid-Atlantic Marketing Manager in 1993. In just five years he garnered the respect of the company’s artists and employees and was named president of the Def Jam Music Group. During his tenure as president, from 1998 to 2002, Def Jam revenues doubled to $400 million. Liles also oversaw the development and creation of the brands Def Jam South, Def Soul, Def Soul Classics, Roc-A-Fella and Murder Inc.

In 2002, he added the title of executive vice president of Island Def Jam Music Group.  Instrumental in the success of superstars and emerging artists such as Jay Z, Hoobastank, Ludacris, Sum 41, Ja Rule, LL Cool J, DMX, Kanye West, Musiq and Ashanti, Liles’ track record of artist successes solidifies him as one of the most important executives in the entertainment industry. He has also overseen all of Def Jam brand-extension and cross-marketing deals that have linked Def Jam’s name to movies, television, DVDs, video games, clothing, financial services and mobile content arenas.

In June 2001, Liles joined his mentor Russell Simmons in hosting the first of three hip hop summits created to reach out to members of the hip hop community to better grasp the social, political, and cultural ramifications of the hip hop movement.  

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