MEET JADA RENEE: CEO OF INDI MEDIA
Jada, tell us a little more about how you started INDI Media & INDI Music Group?
The story is still in motion for sure, but for the most part the "INDI" brand stands for “Individuality” and we are a creative platform for musicians and entrepreneurs to develop their brands via creative marketing strategies and marketing opportunities.
We have three tiers to the brand: INDI Media, INDI Music Group, and the INDI clothing line.
As a kid, I was always into art and music, I wouldn't say I was ever interested in being a musician per say but music was definitely always around me thanks to my mom.
I grew up listening to several types of music from Maxwell ,The GAP Band, Bone Thugs N Harmony, Biggy, Tupac, Mob Deep, Jamiroquai, Alanis Morissette, Anita Baker, Phyllis Hyman, and Dionne Faris.
I was a fanatic for BET’s Access Granted, Word Up Magazine, and MTV Cribs so all of 90’s hip hop culture definitely helped guide my creative interests.
Everything in terms of the creation of the INDI brand started during my time in college at Kent State University.
I was granted the opportunity to travel abroad to South Africa, Johannesburg my sophomore year through an outside nonprofit organization called, “The KENO Foundation” based in Atlanta.
The trip awarded ten students to travel to Johannesburg for three weeks to learn about business development and the economic opportunities of South Africa.
During my time in Africa with the KENO Foundation, we participated in several workshops geared towards business development.
For one of the workshop activities we had to complete a mock business plan for a potential business that we wanted to create and the creative ideas for INDI started flowing.
We were told that our business plan could be modeled after our personal interests and hobbies, my hobbies have always involved mixed media, music, fashion, and the arts so I feel that my brand name and concept came to me in that moment.
I first started to network with friends and students at my college by creating a clothing line for the brand self titled, “INDI” while also finding ways to promote the clothing.
I ended up throwing college house parties, and artist networking events at local bars and art galleries in downtown Kent, Ohio.
I would work with my friends to collaborate with musicians and artists at my college and surrounding universities to do local shows for artists and this eventually led to the INDI brand creating overall opportunities for artists and entrepreneurs outside of Ohio.
After doing a few shows our merchandise ended up on "Syd the Kid" from The Internet Band during their "Ego Death" album tour.
This was the first thing that sparked momentum for the INDI brand and we began to receive notoriety amongst the mainstream indie artist scene in music.
I chose to live in Houston for a few summers to develop more of the music foundation of the brand.
I connected with several Houston artists and created ways to expand the brand and this led me to connecting with my first artist, “Aphiniti” when I arrived back home in Cleveland.
I connected with Aphiniti after her classic freestyle with 'Sway in The Morning' back in 2015.
We instantly started to build and find ways to work together to advance our journey in music in the independent artist industry .
We started creating brand concepts and project ideas for Aphiniti which led to INDI managing and booking shows while doing event planning and brand management for a few art organizations in Cleveland.
After a few years, we were granted the opportunity to have Aphiniti collaborate on a social justice music project with the Late Great Nipsey Hussle and two Cleveland organizations by launching a music video campaign, social justice panel, and live performance.