Who Got the Answers?
By: Bianca Hayes
You may know him as the man who wears many hats or for his work that dominated hip hop culture in the 90s and early 2000s. He is still working today with his shows “Sway in the Morning“(radio) and Off the Bat from the MLB Fan Cave” (television). Students and faculty of Syracuse University had the pleasure of hearing how Sway Calloway climbed the mountain to success on the evening of November 13, 2014.
One of his many quotes that touched me was in regards to his advice for aspiring journalists, where he told us to “Create your own seat, because no one can duplicate it”. Sway has created his own seat in all areas of the industry being that he began as a rap artist in his teen years to being someone who has interviewed people across the spectrum from the Notorious B.I.G. to Jessica Alba. It obviously doesn’t end here being that he currently has a show on MTV and a show on Sirius XM. I have nothing but respect for this man. For someone of his caliber to have achieved all that he has, remained true to himself, and be so down to earth, is something to aspire to. Even when asked about how he feels about the success he has attained thus far, his response was, “I don’t feel like I’ve made it, I feel like I’m working”, which shows that he doesn’t believe that he is above anything and that he has to work just as hard to maintain his legacy as he did to obtain it.
He is the epitome of how there isn’t a set formula to achieve excellence. He didn’t finish college, and was told that he would never be on radio, amongst other situations. Yet, he is one of the most powerful voices in the business. His life shows us that you do what you love, or as he said, “If you have something that you’re passionate about, treat it extremely special”. With this said, don’t do things because it is the societal norm or because it’s the family tradition, work on a craft because YOU want it. This all comes down to self-worth and making sure that you “never compromise your integrity”. Only someone who has integrity would study the business “like it was the SAT”, and who follows their passion would turn down the chance to have a show on MTV three out of the four times it was offered to him. He just wouldn’t be true to himself if he had taken up the offer the first three times, especially since he was already working on a show he had at the time.
I can’t possibly sum up all of the greatness I witnessed in one article, but I leave you two things. One: Sway definitely HAS the answers. Two:whether you want to be a singer, inventor, mathematician, or a carpenter, you have to be “able to recognize opportunity and maximize it”.