What's your name? How did you get started?
My name is Jori Neuman. I was born on November 12, 1995, in Tampa, FL where I lived until college. I grew up wanting to be an actress or a singer, but as I got older my passion shifted towards event production and working behind the scenes. Throughout my childhood and into adulthood, I attended many shows and concerts. I went to many Hip-Hop shows, specifically events put on by a local production company: Dope Entertainment, who I later ended up interning for in college. After interning for Dope Ent, I began working in music video production. Some of the biggest moments in my career include working at the Rolling Loud Music Festival as well as assisting with production on music video sets for artists such as Gucci Mane, Kevin Gates, and Young Dolph.
What is your experience in the music industry? Do you have any formal training or schooling? If not, are you self-taught and how did you learn your craft? What is your learning style? What are your favorite educational resources (ex. college, Youtube, etc.)?
In 2014 I attended college at the University of Central Florida for Entertainment Management. During my second year of college, I finally introduced myself to Tariq Cherif (the co-founder of Dope Entertainment and later on Rolling Loud Music Festival). He hired me on as an intern and I handled most of the hospitality for the company: filling artist riders, transporting crew/talent, basically ensuring the artists were happy before they hit the stage. I made some incredible connections during that time, and I’m so grateful to have had the experience! While working for Dope Ent, I met Jordan Spencer. A local photographer at the time but now a professional director better known as “Shotbyspencer”. We began dating and I learned about a whole new aspect of the music industry: film! After moving on from Dope Entertainment, I began working with Jordan as his assistant on set. After two years together, we decided to pack up our lives and move to Atlanta, where work in the music industry would be much more eventful for him. Since moving to Atlanta, we have been blessed to work with many talented artists. Among those artists are Gucci Mane/The New 1017, Young Dolph and Key Glock, Kevin Gates, and many more. It has been a blessing to learn so much about the film industry while working on these projects. Throughout our time in Atlanta, we have solidified our ability to execute shoots at any level. Whether it’s a video shoot with an indie budget or a major label behind it, we will make it happen!
What are some credits and achievements that you have? Who have you worked with? Who have you collaborated with?
My credits include a range of departments such as treatment writing, production management, art department, and behind the scenes photography on set. I’ve assisted on shoots for many of Young Dolph and Key Glock’s music videos, as well as Gucci Mane and his new label The New 1017. Most recently for Gucci Mane’s “CEO Flow” visual, we had two hours to shoot a run-and-gun style visual in Atlanta. I drove through the city following Gucci’s car while Spencer filmed out the window and hopped out in traffic! It was a crazy experience, but as always, we got it done!
Who are your biggest influences growing up and why? Who do you like to listen to now and why? Who’s on your playlist right now?
My biggest influences growing up were film directors such as Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, Quentin Tarantino, etc. Each of their unique styles of filming is all so distinguishable to them, which is a characteristic I admire. I currently draw inspiration from directors like Reel Goats, Cole Bennet, Spencer of course, and other young and talented creators that have made a name for themselves in this industry based on their creative style alone. It’s inspiring to watch their work evolve into what they are doing today, and I can’t wait to see where they all are in 5 to 10 years from now!
What are some of the biggest obstacles you’ve encountered or faced in this industry?
Our motto is “Adapt and Overcome”. Every show, shoot, or event is always prone to a handful of obstacles, whether it be talent promptness or unexpected rain on an outdoor set. The key is to stay calm and figure out a plan, and to know that in the end, we will always get what is needed by adapting to the situation at hand.
How would you describe your sound and style?
I would describe my style as modern with a nod to the classics. I like to reference specific cinematic or moments from reality in a way that captures the attention of the newer, modern audience.
What are some of your goals this year?
My personal goals this year are to venture out from assistant directing and begin directing visuals myself. Having learned so much over the past five years and assisting on dozens of shoots, I think I’m ready to take on the challenge of directing myself!
Who are the top 3 artists, producers, engineers, videographers, or others you would want to work with that you haven’t worked with yet?
Artist-wise, this past year we were lucky enough to be allowed to work with Gucci Mane and his new artists. They have been a dream to work with and a bucket-list experience for us! I’d personally like to continue to work with more female artists as well. With two of Gucci’s new signees being females (K Shiday and Enchanting), it’s been a fun new experience curating content for these two incredible women! On the production side of things, I would be honored to one day work with the Reel Goats. Having connected with the guys a few years back, I would love to work more closely with them and learn from such talented and inspiring creators at their level!
What is your creative process like?
When developing a treatment for a music video, I draw most of my inspiration from cinema and television. I begin with listening to the song, then drawing parallels to well-known cinematic or historical moments. Once we get approval from the artist, we begin booking locations, models, vehicles and secure/make whatever props are needed to make the vision come to life! Sometimes it’s as easy as picking up a rental from the prop house. Other times it’s more involved, like building entire sets within hours!
What’s your favorite go-to order?
Fast food: Anything chicken, it’s my favorite! Fine dining: Filet Mignon with a side of truffle mashed potatoes and asparagus.