I’m robesman. I do a bunch of different things including running my own brand robesman. I was born and raised in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago, but now live in LA.
How was life growing up?
Life was pretty straightforward growing up. My Dad was a 1st generation Polish immigrant, and both my parents both came from the Southside of Chicago. My parents really valued education and family and whatnot. They were able to get themselves in to better situations via pursuing higher education so they really instilled that value in me and my sisters.
When did you begin to witness your creative talents?
I just know that I’ve always liked to create. At a young age I would be into drawing and making my own cartoons in class. I wasn’t that good, but I liked to do it. For me, I just always knew what I wanted to see and would figure out a way to make it a reality.
You talked about how your parents valued education. Upon graduating from high school you went to study at Northwestern. How was that experience?
Northwestern was a super strong school academically. I majored in Industrial Engineering and Economics. My degree is completely unrelated to my current business but engineering taught me how to break down large problems in to manageable pieces. College also taught me how much work I was able to accomplish in a short amount of time. College was trash.
You’ve been in the music business for now 10 years, talk about how you first got into the industry
When I was 13, I heard a quote from the show Daria on MTV. Someone asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up and she said something like, “I want to be someone who doesn’t wake up at 40 with the bitter realization that I’ve wasted my life on a job that I hate because I was forced to decide on a career as a teenager.” That quote really stuck with me because I was young and didn’t want to feel bad for not knowing what I wanted to do with my life yet. I knew education was a path that got me to about age 22, but after that I didn’t know what was to come. The music industry presented itself to me in a sense. While I was going into my senior year of college my friends’ band (Powerspace) got signed to a label called Fueled By Ramen. I wanted to help them succeed so I ended up getting an internship at their management company. From there was hired to go on the road with them as their tour manager and eventually managed them.
What caused the move to LA?
I toured with Powerspace for a year, and then came back home to graduate from Northwestern so my Mom wouldn’t kill me. Once I graduated, I knew that I wanted to continue on in the music industry and get involved with music management. I moved to LA because there were far more opportunities for me in the industry than anywhere else.
What did you do in the music industry in LA?
I was working at Front Line Management for 12 months and then moved into working at a small indie label and promotion company. I started as an assistant and eventually moved up to become a senior VP. We worked with 50 radio stations, every major label, and had our own artist and songwriter management roster. One of the main clients I got to work with was Daya, who ended up going double platinum in her first year and just won a Grammy.
You’re in LA, working within the music industry, how do you then meet Adam and get involved with No Jumper?
I met Adam 2 years ago through a mutual friend of ours Drew Millard from Noisey. Adam followed me on twitter one day and I followed him back. Drew Millard then reached out to me and said he was going to do an interview on No Jumper. Adam and Drew said I should come and talk as well. I didn’t know much about the podcast, but went in with Drew anyway. It ended up being a ton of fun. I’ve always enjoyed listening to long form talk radio type shows (Loveline) and podcasts. That podcast was the first time I met Adam too. Next week, I reached out to Adam to tell him I have people that are interested in doing the podcast. I set up that interview and co-hosted. He then kept hitting me back to co-host. It was a slow and natural relationship. I think he was always looking for a co-host, he just didn’t know who it could be and now he has a nice rotating crew of guys to come help support.
What has been your favorite interview on No Jumper?
I would have to say Mod Sun was the craziest interview, but sitting down and interviewing Adam was one of my favorites. Adam and I are actually friends but a lot of times we are both so busy that a podcast is the only time we can have a deep conversation so I really enjoy walking around his brain on camera.
Another connection I want to talk about is Brandon Wardell. How did you guys meet?
Once again, another connection created by Drew Millard. Shout out Drew btw. Drew was going to a party with Brandon and asked if I wanted to go with. Before the party, we ended up going to Brandon’s house, and we connected over the fact that we were all following @sexualjumanji.
On top of being involved with the music industry, you also run your own brand called “robesman”. Talk to us about that.
I started robesman four years ago as an experiment of how far I could take my ideas with zero marketing budget. I was also frustrated watching artists with amazing creative talent put zero effort in to connecting with their fanbase outside of strictly music. I really wanted to see how hard it is to build a base from nothing (note: it’s hard af). I also just had ideas I wanted to bring to life and wanted have full complete control over the execution. I started working with artists/creators and have now been able to put out 8 seasons of merchandise and 5 collaborations. This journey has been a constant work in progress, and with each season I’m trying to always add another layer to the vision. I wanted to make something that’s special and unique for whoever gets it so I never reprint.
Recently we saw Justin Bieber wearing your shorts. How was that feeling?
It was pretty cool haha. It actually was pretty simple too. I’m friends with Siena, who works for his styling team. Back in season 4 she said Justin would like the long sleeve I made, so I sent it to her. He supposedly wore it, but never got photographed. I then created the shorts with Brandon Wardell and once again Siena was like Justin would love these. I sent her a bunch of them, and one day online I see that TMZ has uploaded like 80 photos of Justin wearing our shorts in the ocean.
You work with artists all the time, who are 3 artists you would like to collab with on a robesman season?
I would love to work with Kanye West, Lil Pump, and Ariana Grande. Ariana hmu.
When it’s all said and done how would you like to be remembered?
I just want to be remembered as someone who took care of his friends and family.
Written By: Nicholas Rud