Volume 4 / Chapter 127
[TN: For those who asked about my road trip…it was one of the hardest things I’ve done in my life! LOL but I get to cross it off my bucket list so….anyway, enjoy!]
While his mind was busy with thoughts, the door opened.
“What’s going on that your secretary is making a fuss? What is it?”
Charlie Dwayne is the Senior Director of LA Sound, dealing with the real business aspect of the company. He had come running because the secretary made such a fuss.
“There’s a super rookie. He’s an alien.”
Charlie Dwayne could tell from Alex Zakin’s expression that he had discovered a big fish.
“Quickly write up a contract and bring it to me. We need to get him before he leaves.”
“He’s that good?”
He was certain he had heard Alex say that it is a rookie, but he is asking for a 1st grade contract. In the 15 years he had worked at LA Sound, there was only one time where he made a 1st grade contract for a rookie.
Though he only released one album before dying in a car crash, it accumulated over 20 million sales until now.
“I met him for the first time yesterday. Today’s the second time, and we already got two albums out of him. Even 1st grade is too low. If there are better conditions, you have to put them in the contract.”
“What? Are you being serious? Or are you joking? What do you mean he made an album a day?”
“It’s true. If I could, I would lock him in the recording studio. Stop wasting time and write up the contract. I don’t know when he’ll leave.”
Charlie Dwayne did not need to think about the type of music it was. Alex had said two albums, not two songs. If he said two albums, it indicated music that could top the charts.
“Okay. I’ll get it ready right away.”
Once Charlie Dwayne left, Alex Zakin paced his office imagining different situations. Should they create a band with Jun Hyuk in the lead? Or should they make an album with multiple bands that Jun Hyuk guest performs with? Should they try making a bunch of albums as a one-man band?
However, his happy thoughts quickly ended. He remembered that Jun Hyuk is a student at CH School of Music. The path of a maestro and the path of a star. He did not yet know which path Jun Hyuk wants to take. Whatever path, he was sure that there would be the day when Jun Hyuk earns the title of a Grammy Award winner.
Currently, the person with the most Grammys is not Michael Jackson or Madonna. It is 31 awards for Sir Georg Solti who is called the maestro of the century. Following behind him is renowned producer Quincy Jones with 27 awards.
When his secretary delivered an envelope with the contract, Jun Hyuk entered Alex’s office with the sound engineer.
“Where is Stanley?”
“He’s with his manager.”
“Okay. You did well today.”
When the sound engineer left, Alex spoke while watching Jun Hyuk’s bright expression,
“Jun, what did you think about performing with Stanley? Killer, huh?”
“He he. Yes. It was the best. I don’t know how he brings out that kind of rhythm…..”
Jun Hyuk gave a thumbs up.
“We even exchanged phone numbers. He said that he would make sure to call me if he comes to New York.”
“Great, since his life consists of touring all year. You guys will get to meet again soon.”
For a moment, Alex Zakin imagined Jun Hyuk standing on stage with Stanley Clarke. The citizens of New York would be surprised.
“Jun, I enjoyed that incredible moment today… Will you do me a favor?”
Jun Hyuk hesitated because he was not sure what Alex would say, but Alex did not care. It is not an excessive favor.
“Hurry up and select an representative. I’d like to make an album with today’s performance as soon as possible.”
“As I said, I don’t want to and can’t talk money with you. I’m too impatient of a person to keep today’s performance under wraps.”
“Okay. I’ll do that.”
“And… when you meet a good business partner, show this to them.”
Alex handed over a manila envelope embellished with a large LA Sound logo.
“What is this?”
“Excuse me? Didn’t you say you would make the contract later?”
“Of course. We’re going to take care of the CD you gave me yesterday and today’s performance separately. This contract is just a general contract. It’s about how many albums you’ll release with LA Sound going forward. It’s mostly blank. You can fill it in with whatever you want. Your representative will know the details.”
Jun Hyuk just touched the envelope because he did not know what it meant.
“Just keep one thing in mind for me. The conditions of this contract are only offered to superstars who have an accumulated record sales exceeding 30 million copies.”
“30 million copies?”
“Yeah. I’m positive that you’re going to exceed that.”
A contract with great conditions and recognition of his talent. Jun Hyuk packed the envelope.
“I understand. Whoever my partner is, I’ll be sure to tell them.”
“Good. Then you’re done with work here? What are you going to do?”
Once Alex Zakin saw Jun Hyuk pack the contract, he relaxed.
“Ah, I have to go to Japan.”
“Yes. I have some personal plans. But…..”
“Go ahead. Tell me.”
Jun Hyuk hesitated because he could be getting involved unnecessarily.
“What’s going to happen to Coline?”
“Well, Coline is now under Ili’s jurisdiction. Why? Are you worried about him because he’s your friend?”
“A little. I agreed to do the producing… but I feel a bit bad.”
“Don’t worry. Coline has plenty of potential. What’s left is how strong their will is. If they give up because it’s hard, it’s over. If they grit their teeth and make the effort, they’ll succeed.”
Jun Hyuk got up from his seat and bowed with all sincerity to Alex Zakin.
“Thank you, Alex. I had an unforgettable experience thanks you to.”
“Stop that. That’s what I should be saying to you. The performance you two put on was the best gift for me as a fan of jazz, not as a producer.”
Alex Zakin hugged Jun Hyuk who had his head bowed.
As soon as Jun Hyuk got back to the hotel, he made a call to Korea. He told them that his work in LA ended earlier, so he would get on a plane to Japan the next day, and packed his bags.
Coline and the band did not come back until midnight. Ili had worked them so rigorously that they collapsed on their beds and could not get up.
Jun Hyuk called Coline and went down to the lounge in the hotel lobby.
“Jun, what’s up?”
Coline started to get nervous when he saw Jun Hyuk’s serious face.
“Um… I wanted to tell you what Alex Zakin said today.”
Jun Hyuk repeated Alex Zakin’s evaluation of Coline verbatim, without any exaggeration.
“It means that we’re at a point where I have to make a choice.”
Jun Hyuk did not feel the need to say anything. Coline’s expression was already speaking for him.
The top producer leading the top record label in America said that he could succeed if he put in the effort. Coline did not start with such a light heart that he would hesitate here.
“Thanks, Jun. I was able to get here because of you. I won’t ever forget it.”
Coline held Jun Hyuk’s hand tightly for a long time.