Intern tours with Ludacris


Jason Newman, former student at Binghamton University of New York is a freelance journalist and musician who is interning with Axe Clix Media company and following Ludacris on tour. Newman applied for this position and was chosen among many, “when someon Photo Illustration by Amelia Moore The Daily Illini

By Jason Newman

At 27 years old, Jason Newman has done a lot to further his career in music freelance writing, but nothing quite compares to the experience he has been given now with AXE Clix.

Newman was hired as the intern for AXE Clix, the deodorant brand, this year. He shadows Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges and experiences what it is like to be backstage for Ludacris’ current tour.

The internship gives Newman the chance to see just about everything that goes on with a rapper’s tour.

“(The internship is) sort of a combination of observing Ludacris in his natural environment and participating to an extent, and seeing the most realistic behind-the-scenes look: what a rapper goes through on tour, after the show, and leading up to a CD release,” Newman said.

Many people applied for the internship with AXE, and Newman said he was very grateful to be offered the opportunity and accepted right away.

“AXE came calling and gave me this pretty amazing opportunity to follow Ludacris around, go on the AXE Clix bus, which is the VIP area,” he said. “I get to sort of do an ‘Almost Famous’ type thing with a rapper. I jumped at the opportunity to do that when they offered.”

One of the highlights of Newman’s internship is that he gets to write an article for the Nov. 16 issue of Rolling Stone magazine about his experience with Ludacris.

“I think one of the things AXE wants to do is give exposure to a writer,” Newman said. “AXE has been really cool about giving me a lot of creative control.”

As a graduate of Binghamton University in upstate New York, he got an internship at Musician magazine, and continued his love of music writing after being very involved with his college newspaper as a staff writer, concert editor and entertainment editor.

But Newman had been engrossed in the music business before college and has been writing profiles, reviews and stories since he was 17.

“I wrote for Herb, All Hip Hop, The Associated Press, Yellow Rat Bastard — a bunch of stuff,” Newman said.

Newman said that the most exciting part would probably be the day in New York City before Ludacris’ new album Release Therapy is released.

“We are going to do a CD release party, I’m going to be following him around all day on Monday,” he said. “He’s doing the Virgin Megastore, he’ll be doing some radio stations, some TV, so I’m really looking forward to seeing everything that a rapper goes through 24 hours before the release,” he said. “I don’t see that a lot in journalism, sort of like that really behind-the-scenes look, it’s pretty unique.”

Newman admitted he was a little nervous on the first day he met Ludacris, but said soon after meeting him any nervousness was gone.

He said that most of the time him and Ludacris spend together is just hanging out and talking to him.

He also went on to talk about the joke they share with the AXE clickers, which count the number of girls that check each of the guys out.

“They gave us both clickers, mine is worth about a quarter and his is worth about $800 million,” he laughed. “A girl will check him out and he’ll click, and for every like thousand girls that check him out I can click once.”