Sammie (S.E.J) Johnson is the founder and CEO of Dallas, TX based record label Empire Thang Records whom was founded in 1999. Although he began his career as a rapper, he has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, starting Empire Thang Records at the young age of 17yrs old. Prior to the birth of Empire Thang records, he landed a record deal with Dallas based record label Diamond Records at age 15 yrs. old, where he learned a lot of his work ethic and business skill building, which aided him for when he got ready to start his own company. During his time at Diamond Records, he refined himself as an artist and businessperson taking on the ways of guerrilla marketing to promote album sales. Sammie being the top seller at Diamond Records would get a percentage of each record sold, which later gave him the idea that if he had his own company, and still carried the same marketing tactics that made him successful at his current label, he could do that for himself, and make double the income and not just take a percentage, he would then be bringing in the entire revenue from his sales.
Diamond (D) who was the owner of the label closely mentored Sammie, and said something to him one day that solidified his want to own his own label. “ One day he had said something that stuck with me to this day. He said if I quit right now, aint nobody gone have nothing, it’s gone stop for everybody.” Sammie believed that was a very influential statement that he made because it was true, if for any reason this guy decides to quit or falls ill, everything stops because he is the only one working on the business end of things. Sammie (S.E.J) Johnson has dropped 13 personal albums independently on his record label, not including those of the additional eight artists on Empire Thang’s roster. Currently, S.E.J has expanded Empire Thang’s brand to also include videography and photography under the name The Street Director/ Live Vision Productions, and recently was the still photographer for Dallas, TX independent film Carter High School, directed by Arthur Muhammad which is currently being shown in 10 different states. Empire Thangs next venture under the Live Vision Productions branch of the company is what will be their first feature film called Quintessential the movie, which will also have a soundtrack that will be done on the record label side of the company. S.E.J has a free mix tape album dropping Jan. 1st ,entitled Emeritus Shere Khan that will be able to be found on any free downloadable music platform by just going and typing S.E.J.
“ The number one thing in business is to learn what you’re doing, invest in yourself therefore you can make a move when you want to move, cause if you always have to pay out to make a move, now, when your money runs out so does your options on what you can do.”