Artists' Jobs Before They Made It In Music

When going to festivals and listening to our favorite artists work their magic, it's hard to imagine that these people were not always making music. For the most part it feels like this is what they were born to do. While nowadays, it seems like producers are starting and getting big before they even graduate high school, this wasn't always the case. 

Here is a list of some of our favorite artists jobs before they made it in the music industry:

Kevin Parker/Tame Impala

Law Clerk

Who would have thought that before Parker became the musician we know and love as Tame Impala he was working as a law clerk in Perth, Australia. He actually wrote some of his first songs whilst bored and travelling around for work delivering court documents. When music began to take over and his work began to slack, he was threatened with being fired and quit instead. We couldn't be happier he did! 

Calvin Harris 

Shelf Stacker

Before Calvin Harris was trotting the globe as one of the biggest DJs in the industry, he could be found stacking shelf displays back in 2007, when he was working in the Dumfries branch of Marks & Spencer. His debut album was written and produced in his home studio between shifts.


After-School Teacher

Thomas Wesley Pentz, better known as Diplo once worked as an after-care school teacher in Philadelphia helping children with behavior problems. He would later quit due to what he called, a lack of respect for teachers and his profession. 

Steve Aoki

Kitchen Staff/Telemarketer 

Steve Aoki grew up as the son of the man who founded Benihana, now that's a lot of pressure to live up to. Luckily, we know the end to this story and it's safe to say he's done it. Steve states that there was a lot of pressure to impress his father, being that he was the heir to the Benihana restaurant chain. His first job was working in the restaurant as kitchen help, later becoming a telemarketer in his college days. Not only was he doing that, he was also a messenger boy for a greasy fast-food place. All of that was worth it, because now he's one of the biggest names in the game. 




Something new fans may not know about Kaskade is that he’s a devout Mormon. While attending school at Brigham Young University, Kaskade claims he was alienated by his fellow mormons due to his love for house music. At 19 he did two years of missionary work in Japan, after this trip he decided to focus on music. Kaskade is known to not drink and also attend church on a regular basis.

Nina Kravitz 


The Russian techno queen, known for her heavy-hitting track selection was once filling teeth instead of dance floors. At one point in the early 00s, the former fully qualified dentist would work during the day at a war veterans hospital in Moscow, and play at a local club residency by night.



Before discovering his love for electronic music and after parties, Solomun ran his own film production company. For five years, he and a few friends produced short films until Solomun turned his attention to music, and well, you know the rest. 


Professional surfer

Before Fisher rocked the dance floors with his smash hit "Losing It," he was shredding the competition as a pro surfer. He later joined forces with his DJ partner to create CutSnake, then took it one step further to launch his solo career. 

DJ Diesel/Shaq

Professional Basketball Player

Now this comes as no surprise. Shaq is globally more famous as a basketball player, but he's been blowing up, booking the biggest festivals in the world as DJ Diesel. It goes to prove that just because you retire, doesn't mean your career is over.

Know any other fun facts about some of your favorite artists? Leave a comment below! 

Calvin harrisDiploDj dieselFisherKaskadeNina kravitzSolomunSteve aokiTame impala