Just hours before he took the stage in front of thousands at Orlando’s Amway Center last month as a member of Justin Timberlake‘s Tennessee Kids band, musician Elliott Ives was hanging out in the Full Sail Live Venue, chatting with a few students about his career.
The informal visit, an “unplugged Q&A session” of sorts, was organized by Career Development‘s SPARK department. During the hour-long chat, Elliott talked about his years as a musician in Memphis – a series of internships, bands, and record deals that culminated with a phone call from Justin Timberlake’s manager asking him to come to Los Angeles for some work, which later turned into Elliott working with Timberlake. (Elliott’s former band had previously been signed to Justin’s production company, which is how they knew each other.) Elliott was in the studio during the making of Justin Timberlake’s The 20/20 Experience and has been touring with him as a member of his live band since.
“[Recording the album] was really hands-on and really carefree,” said Elliott about the recording process, which had him sharing studio space with chart-toppers like Jay Z, Beyonce, and Timbaland.
Besides telling career stories, Elliott stressed that perseverance and professionalism are what got him to where he is today. His advice: “It’s being professional that really gets the attention of people who have been doing this for awhile.”