Interviews

Published on October 2nd, 2018 | by Landon Buford

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Dave Evans Discusses His CBD & THC Holistic Product Line “Zenholistic” And Starting Back Stage Access Magazine

Courtesy of Dave Evans

Dave Evans is a 19- year veteran in the entertainment business, which began back in the late 1990s. As he put it, he was just someone that would hang out in the studio with his cousin super producer Meech Wells, who is the son of legendary songstress Mary Wells. Wells introduced Evans to entertainment business, which led him to landing a gig at Paramount Studios as a personal assistant, running errands and completing task as they were needed.

It was at this particular job that he would come up with the concept  to start his own publication entitled Backstage Access Magazine. It showed the public content that you were not able to find anywhere else, showcasing  events such as the Oscars, ESPYs, Grammy’s, and concerts.  Evans wanted to also provide a platform to help showcase other independent creators, such as himself and their work to the masses.

Evans has also partnered with a streaming service provider by name of I Wire. The platform is like Spotify, Apple Music, and Tidal, but it is geared towards independent artists, and film makers to help monetize their music and movies, giving them a better return on their investment.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Back Stage Access Magazine’s Founder and CEO Dave Evans about how it all began. In addition, we discussed some of the new things he has on the horizon moving forward.

How did you get introduced to the entertainment business?

I was introduced to the entertainment business by a cousin of mine named “Meech Wells” who is a super producer. He is the son of Mary Wells, who burst on the entertainment scene as a very talented singer in the early 1960s. Back in 1999, Meech was working with Snoop and Master P on Snoop’s album at the time. I would always be around those individuals and that was my introduction into the business.

What inspired, you to create Backstage Access Magazine and how did you want to set yourself apart from your competition?

That coincides with your previous question about how I got into the entertainment business.  When I was introduced to Snoop I wasn’t in the business at the time, but I would always take pictures. I started off at Paramount Pictures working in the studios here in Los Angeles as a personal assistant. Meaning I always had to get coffee and do other things. One day I was thinking to myself ‘I’m always backstage.” That sparked the concept for the magazine. I went home and Googled the name, and found out it was available. I bought name, and branded it across all platforms.

What advice would you give individuals out there who are interning, but it hasn’t led to a position that will pay the bills?

It is not about who you intern for, it is about the connections you make while you are interning or working for them. So, it is really about the network that you build up. It is not about one specific person that you are working with, because that person is only focused on one thing. Whether that means acting, producing, dancing, but there are people around that person are also involved that might have other opportunities. It is all about the network you build to get where you want to go. So, don’t take no for an answer because someone will be willing to give you an opportunity.

Did you want to emphasize showcasing independent artists?

I did, and that is a great question because there are always going to be individuals that say we do not have a chance. Then the follow up question is how do we get noticed. Independent artists, no matter if they are into fashion, art, or journalism, are always going to need a platform to showcase their work. The major platforms back then, similar to what you see now were not focused on the independent artists and with me being based online I wanted to go after people like myself that were trying to get into the industry. People that were looking to gain an audience, and have their material seen by the public. That is where I was able to find my niche.

Why did you think the Westcoast needs an outlet to give them a voice like your east coast counterparts?

I have major love for the east coast. Honestly, we were just talking about this with Snoop and the rest of the camp. The east coast and the west coast feeds off of each other as pertains to fashion, sound, and now the south is really big.  On the east coast they are hustlers and the artists such as, Jay-Z, Nas, Biggie to name a few really went out there and made a name for themselves. California on the other hand not so much and it only happens when it pertains to Death Row Records and Bad Boy Beef, and then that mentality started to travel. The music industry did not really describe Los Angeles until the Death Row Bad Boy era, and everyone wanted to be hip hop artists. Now it’s on the map. The same can be said about the south.

 

Courtesy of Dave Evans

You are also the Co-Founder of the I Wire Music distribution platform. Can you talk about how this concept came about?

Special shout out to the whole I Wire Music family. Sam Midgett is the owner and creator of I Wire that also includes, I Wire Music, film, and now we have I Wire Backstage Pass. When I created Backstage Access Magazine back in 1999, I decided to buyout everything with the name, and never used it until this opportunity presented itself. Sam reached out to me at a meeting, and we sat down. He explained what the functions of the platform were, and things progressed from there. At this particular time it was the only livestreamed platform for independent artist similar to Spotify and Apple Music, but this was geared towards independent artists. Allowing independent artists to get monetization for their music and then we decided to add other components to the platform, which were adding the capability to stream films for independent filmmakers, and then with my access to the behind the scenes content, it was the perfect combination. We have 20k users on the platform right now, and also we have the ability to play music on blue-tooth. We also, have every genre of music that you can think of on the platform and original movie content. There are about 100 independent artists that are featured on the platform without any backing, and we are geared toward independent artists. The independent artist receives 75 percent of the profit share, and I Wire receives the other 25 percent.

Is there anything in the works that you might be looking to add to the I Wire Platform?

I do I have a lot of contacts that deal with digital radio stations here in Los Angeles, and a board such as I Heart Radio. Other platforms include Apple Music, accelerated and our next move is to put Dj’s radio shows on I Wire and have them broadcast off our platform as well. We had the owner of Capital Records in Japan come out and a have meeting with us, to go over the platform. They want us to potentially open up a division in Japan. They do not have livestreaming in Japan at this time and want to be able to livestream their artist over there.

Courtesy of Dave Evans

I know you partnered with Snoop Dogg’s Manager Big Percy RMM what exactly is your role?

First off, Big Percy is a friend of mine we grew up in Pomona, California.  Percy started Roderick Music and Marketing while working with Snoop over the last 25 years. I started Backstage Access Magazine in 1999, covering major events behind scene and Big Percy reach out and asked me to cover an event with him and Snoop Dogg. That was six year ago and the rest is history. I am a photographer, videographer, and event coordinator which includes setting up interviews for individuals such as Matt Barnes, Snoop Dogg, Baran Davis, DJ Quick, and Big Percy to name a few.

Are there any other business ventures that you are looking forward to pursuing shortly?

Yes, I’m currently in the process of rollout my first line of CBD and THC holistic products, which is a coconut base massage oil for pain relieve and swelling of the muscle and Holistic CBD candle. I currently supply retire NBA players with my holistic products. The name of my product line is called “Zenholistic.”  I am also working with Big Percy and Red Grant at their mega store called “ The Place” at the Boulevard Mall in Las Vegas with marketing, branding, media coordinating.

How do you want to use your platform and your voice to inspire others?

My platform is definitely inspiring people to start their own platforms like yourself and I have a lot of respect for freelance journalists, photographers and that is why I let them cover certain events to help build their portfolio. The reason why is because there are too many events for me to cover by myself, and the more people you give these opportunities to, your ROI is greater in my opinion. I also try to lead by example and have others follow my lead.

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About the Author

Washington State Graduate Past Interviews include Grammy Award Winner Kenny G, David Banner, WNBA President Lisa Borders, What's Trending's CEO Shira Lazar, Ice Cube, NBC's Chicago PD LaRoyce Hawkins, Family Matters Darius McCrary, En Vogues Maxine Jones, Team USA Track & Field Member Norris Frederick, James Kyson, WNBA Great Lauren Jackson, and more.


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