• Howard Butler

Keaton Jones talks Dorm Room Entertainment, future plans, and work with BIGBABYGUCCI

Finding inspiration in a place that many find suffocating could be called fate. Dorm Room Entertainment was founded by Keaton Jones within the four walls of his dorm room at Lindenwood University, just outside of St. Louis. What started as a platform to interview emerging local artists has quickly shifted, with Keaton becoming one of the more in-demand music video directors. He's found success tweaking the brand to a more creative forefront by directing videos for artists like Matty Wood$, Matt Ox, BIGBABYGUCCI, and more.

Drawing inspiration from entrepreneurs and videographers, Keaton constantly strives to take his brand to the next level. Dorm Room has consistently put out quality videos featuring some of the most promising underground hip-hop artists in the game. Keaton's clients may be considered underground, but his videos are elevating the profile of his clients while he's starting to receive nods from big-time players in the rap game.

Check out the highlights from our conversation below. If you're interested in tuning in to our full conversation, hit the YouTube link above.

Howie: What have been some of your favorite memories during shoots?

Keaton: That's a really good question. One thing that everyone always asked me about—now more than ever that I put this video out—was when me and BIGBABYGUCCI shot the "Pressure + Layers" video, there was this lady at the end of the video that kept screaming at us. She was acting a fool. Basically what happened was, we were filming a scene—the shortest scene. We wanted to walk down the block in LA, right? We're filming in front of this lady's crib; she came outside because we obviously had the music playing. We were kind of loud. She came out and she was like, "What are you guys doing in front of my house?" You ever seen Monster House? The part with the old man yelling and shit? That's literally what she was acting like. She kept saying, "You need to leave; you need to get off my property." We go to shoot the scene, she comes around the corner, and she gets all up in his face. She starts asking us why we're trying to shoot a music video in front of her house and telling Gucci his music isn't shit. She's just saying the rudest shit to us. Afterward, he's just like, "Fuck all that," and I'm just sitting there on my camera. I remember thinking, "What is happening right now?" She went to call the police, but never did. Gucci was like, "Fuck that, let's run this shit." She comes back out, but this time she hops in the video. I'm literally filming her screaming in his face while he's rapping. It was crazy. It was two in the morning or something like that—hella late at night. We're just like, "Bro, she cannot have this much energy." I still got a bunch of film on my terabyte... so much footage from that day.

Howie: What was it like being an RA at Lindenwood?

Keaton: That's a good question. That was a weird time, but I would say that got me a lot more fans. I was always at the front desk editing a video, and I'd have hella people stop by and ask what I was doing. I was always giving out stickers and stuff. My time as an RA was cool; I was just really shitty at the job. I'm being 100%—like, really, really bad. I just didn't care; I was just trying to make money in school. I got fired. But there was one thing that was dope; I'll never forget this day. I was working the night shift. It was 11:00 at night, and I was watching one of my own videos. This football player comes up; his name was Connor. He asks me what I was working on, and he was wanting to check it out. I never talked to this dude ever; he just sat behind me. I played a video on my phone, right? He's like, "Bro, what the fuck? This shit is raw." I just thought it was cool, bro; he's just sitting there watching it the whole time. I had to get a video of his reaction; I still have it on my phone—it's one of my favorites. It was that specific moment that made me realize that I truly have a calling to do music videos; if I could get a random football player to watch one of my videos and tell all his friends about it, I know there's other people out there doing the same thing. Yeah, most definitely—my time as an RA was fun.

Howie: Selling out a show is always an impressive featespecially when it's your first ever show. Where and when was this show?

Keaton: I did my first show in St. Louis within the first year of running my company. Crazy. I literally wrote on a sticky note: "I'm going to sell out a show." I put it on my mirror; I always looked at it every single day. It's just as hard as you think. So, I remember my friend Kyle... He works for VA Shift. He's actually the owner; he lives in Virginia. He was the first person that I saw actually doing shows, getting a lot of people to pull up. I remember I hit him up to tell him I was throwing one in St. Louis, like, "What's the word?" He told me he could actually come out there. I remember it was June or early May. We just connected over the phone. We started planning everything for the show; the planning process was my favorite because we tried to figure out what artists to get. I just sent DMs every single day. I remember just sitting in my room like, "Damn, I'm actually gonna do a show." So, we got all the names down for the bigger artists that we had at the time. Tom the Mailman came from Atlanta to the show. I think he had like 10,000 followers or something like that, so he wasn't popping like he is now. His music was always super dope. I remember that he just came out and no one in St. Louis knew who he was. He had the crowd fucking jumping. The cons of the show, I would say... of course, it's my first show. I was co-hosting, doing the behind-the-scenes. I had to run to help out with sound and such. I didn't personally have the best time at my own show because I was doing everything, but it was good to watch some of the performances actually work out. The second thing was that we didn't even make money like that; we just kind of broke even. But, that's kind of what you first expect when you first throw a show. The third thing was that I wish I had less artists; I booked everyone I thought about, so it was just like a fat lineup. It was dope in the end because people were like, "Yo, I can't wait for more of your shows." So, I'm actually working on throwing my second show.

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