Nima Etminan: The Man Behind DubCNN

blame it on Shake December 1, 2011

Being that I was born on the West Coast, live on the West Coast and will most likely die on the West Coast it’s important to me to keep an ear our for new talent coming from… you guessed it, the West Coast. One of the best ways to do so is to head on over to DubCNN and see what they’ve got going on over there. As a personal fan of the site for years now, I wanted to help give y’all a look into the man behind the moves. Enter Nima Etminan.

For nearly a decade, Nima Etminan has been a vital champion of West Coast rap music as a writer, documentarian, and music industry consultant. His drive to support the culture is a prominent form of giving back to the scene that taught Etminan (who was born in Iran and raised in Germany) how to speak English and gave him his first window into America’s inner cities.

At age 15, Etminan co-founded Dubcnn.com, which remains a leading website for breaking news, interviews, and releases in West Coast rap. From its home base in Europe, Dubcnn cultivated an engaging and informed rapport with the labels, producers, and artists making it happen in California, managing the difficult feat of being respected stateside for its authenticity.

In his pursuit of learning, Etminan has spent every year since 2003 traveling back and forth between Hamburg, Germany and California. He’s fostered long, in-depth working relationships with stars such as Snoop Dogg, who has always offered Dubcnn honest and controversial interviews.

After graduating with a Master of Business Administration in Media Management at the Hamburg Media School in 2010, Etminan joined with Ghazi Shami to expand the mission and services offered by Empire Distribution in San Francisco, a top distributor of digital music for hip-hop, soul, gospel, and more. Etminan now handles both marketing and A&R duties for Empire Distribution.

Etminan’s industry-savvy signings for Empire include Kendrick Lamar, an up-and-coming rap star from Los Angeles who has been passed the torch by legends Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg, and his label Top Dawg Entertainment. Empire now handles all of the Top Dawg projects, including Lamar’s Section.80, one of the most critically acclaimed and best-selling digital-only rap albums of 2011.

I know I don’t normally do these types of spotlights, but dude’s story is pretty dope.