Hustle in Brooklyn has become a groundbreaking show that displays a necessary narrative of young adults in their grind season.Alicia Gooding is a young executive with a heck of a resumé and an amazing personality to match. Making her moves and impacting the culture in her own way, Alicia is a force to be reckoned with!
How did you get to this point in your life?
Honestly, I say this everyday, it was God’s plan. I could have never told you I would be doing this ten years ago. I’m a college dropout. I didn’t even make it through a semester. I thought I was going to be a college English teacher. Now, almost everyday I’m doing something I’ve never done before. I started my company thinking I was going to be an event marketer and five years later I own an agency that’s growing. We have a staff of ten, we handle A&R, management, marketing, and publicity. So I mean it’s just been hard work and God.
How has Hustle in Brooklyn played a role in both your life and career?
So far, it’s been I guess, great exposure. I don’t normally see people like me on TV, right? I’m a dark skinned girl. I’m not someone who wants to be a talent. I’m very much behind the scenes and creating people’s careers. I’m used to people who look like me being pictured and portrayed in a different light. So I will say I think Hustle in Brooklyn allowed me to not be the average stereotype of what you think you’re going to see when you see a black woman on TV. As far as how it’s helped my career, I think that I have to wait and see for that (laughs). You know we’re still in the process. I’m super positive about everything that’s going on. I’m just excited that it’s going to give me a platform to speak about things most people don’t speak about.
Have you gotten any feedback?
Yeah, I have so much talent that reaches out to me. I have people everyday that reach out to me like, ‘Please turn my nothing into something.’ I have managers that are like, ‘I have artist that I know you can take to the next level. I’ve seen how you’ve crafted and developed people’s career.’
Something that speaks to me personally is that because of this show I started opening up about domestic violence. Honestly, I don’t think I had half of this hustle before my first relationship, which was a domestic violence relationship. I was being abused for four years. Since I’m on TV, if I’m going to let it hang, I might as well let it hang all the way out and that was a big thing for people to know. There are so many people who look at me as this strong woman, and I want people to know it doesn’t matter how strong you are, domestic violence has to do with someone else who doesn’t have respect for you and wants to control you. I want to empower other women to not only speak up against it but to reveal what has happened to them.
In what ways have you been able to structure your agency to accommodate each client?
(Laughs) That’s like an everyday struggle because we balance a roster of about eight to fifteen clients at any given time. We have clients on a retainer, clients that we consult for, so honestly (laughs), I think the biggest challenge is balancing our roster. The good thing is every talent doesn’t have something going on at the same time. It’s kind of like I manage the clients, and they trust me enough to know that when I say we should do something it’s what we’re going to do. You kind of have to force it to be in your favor.
So your job is around the clock, 27/4?
Yeah, I basically don’t sleep. But I think that’s what makes me an asset to every person because they know they aren’t going to call me once and not get me. You’re going to get me by the second ring. I want to be there for every client and every person that I work with. That’s how I’ve been able to go from a publicist to an A&R.
In episode five, they opened up the song “Pray” by Smoke Purp feat. A$AP Ferg and I put that whole song together. Ferg is my friend. I introduced him to Smoke Purp and finally got them to cut a record after three studio sessions. Because of the relationship he didn’t charger the label for the feature. It’s more than PR, it’s the brand.
How do you make sure you are having time for yourself?
My time for self-care is anything that has to do with any type of beautician and praying. I pray every single day, multiple times a day. I try to mediate. I go to the gym at least three to four time a week because that’s my happy place. I dress up on the show, but I’m in my sweatpants every day. Most of the time when you see my nails, hair done, and my face beat, that’s a part of my self care, reminding myself of who I am, like, ‘Come Alicia to a little bit better today.’
What can we expect next from you?
Honestly, my next goal, I want to start executive producing and producing content. I feel like we’ve already produced a lot in and around our clients’ careers, so now I want to get into the content game. My partner already started treatments and video, but I want to stand behind the camera. I want to see myself, my vision, and my reality come alive.
Photo: Clifton Prescod/BET
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