Joel Almand is a senior television-radio major at Ithaca College, but he’s known nationwide as DJ Almond. PRMD Records signed him to a deal last summer, and the label, which is affiliated with Grammy-nominated DJs like Avicii, released his debut single, “Don’t Manipulate,” on Spotify and iTunes on Nov. 18.
The journey to a record deal began during Almand’s junior year, when he took part in an internship program in New York City. At the time, he was more focused on working in television than in music. He had secured an internship at Nickelodeon and said his goal was to have a career like Jimmy Fallon’s.
However, although the internship was a great opportunity, it also helped him realize that the nine-to-five work day didn’t suit him. Instead, Almand used the contacts he had made there to reach out to people in the music industry.
“They definitely changed my mind, for sure,” said Almand.
After Almand returned from New York City, PRMD contacted him in hopes of signing him. He says that the interest from the record label changed the game for him, and led him down a different path.
From playing run-of-the-mill frat parties to signing with a well-known electronic dance music record label, Almand is still astounded by the whole ordeal, continually emphasizing that the experience has been surreal. Now, after months of hard production work and stressful administrative technicalities, he is excited for more of his music to be heard by the masses.