By: Eli Love
In the heart of Silicon Valley, a self-proclaimed nerd with far less than 99 problems addressed a crowd of startup CEOs and tech thought leaders about how a guy named Gimel Keaton could play a pivotal role in the creation of nearly all of Jay Z’s albums.
For the uninitiated, Keaton is one of the most notable and recognizable engineers in the history of hip hop. Discerning music fans know him as “Young Guru,” a nickname he picked up as a teenager when he taught African history classes at a community center. In a wide-ranging conversation with Andrew Keen that was much more than a discussion of rap music, Young Guru shared his perspectives on the future of work, music streaming, and the unique relationship he has with technology.
A self-proclaimed nerd who made “being a geek cool,” Young Guru described his ascent in the music industry as a result of curiosity, passion, and a diligent work ethic. His natural inquisitiveness, adaptability, and fluency in multiple subjects may have given him a distinct advantage in his own reinvention, while foreshadowing the future of work.