Before Love & Hip-Hop, I knew who Yandy Smith was. If you’re familiar with Harlem’s rap group “The Diplomats,” then you should have somewhat of an idea who Smith is. She’s the woman who is responsible for some of “The Diplomats” success, especially Jim Jones. Not only is she or was she Jim’s manager, she also handles a lot of projects for “The Diplomats” as a whole. I last ran into Smith back in September, when I was at this Dipset questions and answers conversation, alongside celebrity blogger and radio jockey Miss Info and Dollah Tha Rapper, in Harlem. With the help of her mentor Mona Scott Young, this Howard University alumni has managed the careers of Missy Elliot, Busta Rhymes and Jim Jones. Angela Byrd over at KYSDC.com caught up with Yandy and they talked about getting her break in the music biz, Love & Hip-Hop, Jim Jones, Chrissy, Missy and much more. Below are some excerpts:
Now you’re a HU alumni, how did going to college help you get your foot in the door?
It was really persistent for me to get into the music industry. I am a Howard University alumni but in music what I come to find ,a lot of the stuff I’ve learned in college, I haven’t had to apply it. I was a business management major, with business management I had to take finance, accountant, and business law. All those different things added a little salt to who I am but we have lawyers that cover our contract. I have accountant to handle my mone. I have a financial advisor to handle my finances.
Was it easy to break into the field?
Two months after I graduated, I moved back to New York. A friend of mine had a meeting at Violator and I went with him. I was just sitting in the receptionist area, while I was sitting there, I saw artists come in and out, everybody was laughing, talking loud, music playing. I was like “is this a job or is this a hangout.” At that time, I wanted to get into entertainment law, so I thought maybe God brought me here for a reason. I was just persistent, I got the number to the receptionist and I would call her everyday, then I found out Mona’s assistant number and I called her everyday. Every time I was in Manhattan, I would stop by the office to act like I was saying hi to the receptionist. Every time I went or every time I called I asked if they needed help. I did that for about 3 weeks and finally they gave me a job/internship.
Love & Hip-Hop is heating up. You’re one of the creators of the show along with Mona Scott Young?
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NEXT PAGE: YANDY TALKS LOVE & HIP-HOP, JIM JONES, MONEY, MISSY & BUSTA RHYMES