Elliot is the antagonist of this series; a successful record producer and music label CEO who screws over artists that were once top selling but losing popularity. He drops them and leaves them broke in order to invest more money into rock artist (and the object of his affection) Alimah.
Elliot Hunter Jr. (born June 1, 1972) is an American rapper, producer, and record executive and businessman. He is the president and founder of Lux Records & Lux Management. A celebrated music mogul, he was ranked as one of the top earning hip-hop and music moguls in the country with a net worth of $750 million in 2018.
Early Life and Career Beginnings
Elliot was born in Harlem, New York to Gladys Hunter and Elliot Hunter Sr. Elliot Jr. grew up in a tenement apartment for the first twelve years of his life. Although they lived in a rougher part of the neighborhood and lived in an old tenement building, he recalled having nice clothes, many good-quality toys, and annual family trips to Martha’s Vineyard. Elliot Sr. owned an attractive Cadillac and took pride in his custom-tailored suit collection. Elliot Jr. remembers his mother, a very beautiful and fashionable woman, decorating and maintaining the inside of their apartment making it appear luxurious. Soon after Elliot turned 9, his family moved to a nice single-family unit home in Staten Island.
Around 11 or 12 years of age, Elliot asked his parents why they were able to afford a decent house and nice gifts. He only knew of his mother’s job as a music teacher but not of his father’s real job. Elliot Sr. told his son that he owned a “pharmacy business”, a euphemism for drug dealing. Elliot Sr. worked closely with one of the biggest drug dealers in New York City. To ease his young son’s anxieties, he showed him how he did business the “right way”, by showing him how he kept track of shipments and orders and how he developed “relationships” with others in the drug trade. Despite his dishonest way of earning money, he encouraged his son to not do the same but instead to keep good grades and get a higher education—unlike himself.
In school, Elliot Jr. was known to be a very bright yet rebellious student. While he excelled academically, he also found pleasure in challenging classroom rules and would even get up and leave class without asking to go on bathroom breaks. Elliot recalls that while other kids in high school his age idolized athletes, pop stars or even their own teachers, he was fascinated by stories of tyrannical leaders in history like Adolph Hitler, Henry VIII and Caligula. In high school, he wrote a book report on Caligula and included information about Caligula’s infamous sexual behavior. This caused his teacher to contact his parents for a meeting. While Elliot did not agree with Hitler’s racist views, he was obsessed with the powerful image that surrounded him and his influence, as well as with other dictators.
In 1984, Elliot’s father was arrested. In order to reduce his drug charges, he decided to become a drug informant for the NYPD. After he father’s arrest and time as an informant, Elliot remembers his life changing and becoming filled with paranoia and darkness. His mother would stay up many late nights because phone calls for her husband would keep her from sleeping. After some rivals fired bullets at their home while they were asleep one night, Elliot’s mother left his father. She took Elliot with her to temporarily live with her parents in Brooklyn. Elliot recalled being bored at his grandparents’ house and angry with how strict they were. His grandparents, Gail and Robert Yates, were strict Christians and strong disciplinarians. They didn’t allow Elliot to play secular music; he was only allowed to read the Bible and watch Christian-themed TV shows. He said that his mother also suffered verbal abuse from her parents for marrying a “man of the devil”, where they belittled her and expressed regret in raising her. Elliot was also not allowed to call his father because of his grandparents, even though his father would constantly call the house to talk to him. His grandparents and mother’s religious fervor shaped his own spiritual views. He began to rebel against organized religion and later in his life gain interest in the occult after being spiritually undecided.
At the age of eighteen, Elliot started his first year at Morehouse College with in an interest in business. In his freshman year, he developed an interest in a rap music career. After 18 months studying at Morehouse, he got an internship at Orbis Records, a major record company. Elliot worked his way into trying to learn the ropes of the music industry, determined to help the label find artists, promote them, and even assisted the head of marketing. After his internship ended, he became inspired to create his own studio in his campus apartment and pay artists to record. His dedication to recording music and finding artists led to him dropping out of college in his sophomore year, packing up his studio, and moving back to NYC. Elliot taught himself how to use various audio equipment, such as the soundboard and an 808 drum machine. He taught himself how to play keyboard and drums. Three of his roommates happened to be young aspiring rappers and Elliot would produce their music and promote them around the city. The artists he worked with expressed great admiration of his ability to book gigs, his salesmanship, and his musical talent. He began to sell mixtapes featuring him and his rappers that eventually became popular in the underground scene.
At the age of twenty, Elliot met an unsigned yet gifted rapper and drummer Marcus Brown (known by the stage name, “Markus Blak”). After he recorded Markus’s demo and performed with him to rave reception, he signed Markus to Crooklynite Music, the first music label Elliot created. The two became friends and later business partners. Brown also became a temporary partner in Elliot drug business and they both made enough money to invest in their business and music expenses until they were signed by an underground rap label.
After leaving the underground label in 1997, Elliot officially formed Lux Records/Lux Entertainment in 1998. He made himself president/founder and made Markus co-founder. He went on to sign rappers Ikonik, Zenith, and the first female rapper on Lux, Bambina Lamba. As Lux Records gained national success and recognition when Markus Black was nominated for a Billboard Award in 2000, Elliot went on to sign artists from other genres such as R&B, rock, pop, and indie. Although Elliot’s first love is hip-hop, he is also a huge fan of hard rock and classic rock and his favorite rock band is Led Zeppelin. His first rock artist, Alimah, became his muse as to the more eclectic direction he wanted to take as a producer. He incorporates a lot of rock and punk into his production of hip-hop records, helping to popularize a new form of rap rock that became Lux’s signature sound—a sound that is still popular to this day.
In 2000, Elliot launched Lux Films. Lux Films was a film production company associated with Lux Entertainment. It was a company that Elliot created to distribute films catered to African-American audiences. Elliot released two straight-to-video films From the Top and Desperate Measures through Lux Films. The films featured mostly rappers signed to Lux Records—with the exception of Markus Blak—and other lower-tiered actors and actresses. In 2002, Elliot ended Lux films.
In 2003, Elliot added a short-lived clothing line, Hustlr. While the clothing line sales were up its first year, they dropped the second year and began a steady decline until Elliot ended the line in 2006.
In 2008, Elliot has become active in real estate investment, including having several houses rebuilt in Detroit, Chicago and Los Angeles suburban neighborhoods. Elliot currently own waterfront property in Virginia Beach.
In 2010, Elliot has claimed a percentage of ownership of the New York Knicks.
In 2011, Elliot launched a brand of music production/midi software, Chrōm. Sales of Chrōm grew after heavy promotion and positive reviews. Based on reviews, it has become one of the most popular apps in the music industry, as well as for home users. Soon more products were added to Chrōm Creative Suite such as film and audio editing software and animation production software (named Chrōm Animation Studio). On January 17, 2016, Apple Inc. purchased the brand for $900 million. Since the release of the software, in 2016, it was announced that his new worth had increased to $700 million, making him one of the wealthiest music moguls in the world.
Elliot has been involved with many charitable causes, including his donations to HIV/AIDS medical research. This is mostly inspired by his first cousin who have died of complications from AIDS. Every year, he hold a charity ball where proceeds go to HIV/AIDS research and AIDS treatment in Africa. He is also a huge supporter of raising money for cancer research, having lost his mother and aunt (who raised him after his parents’ deaths) to cancer.