For nearly ten years the Gentlemen of Dream Team Entertainment have brought Louisville some of the hottest parties but there’s a lot more to these party promoters than meets the eye. Behind the glitter and lights lies a closely knit four man crew that embodies the art of entrepreneurship.
That crew consists of Philip Thomas, Richard Ballard, Romeo Cross and Toney Frank. This weekend I had the pleasure of sitting down with 1/4 of the powerful Dream Team crew, Philip Thomas, to get some background information on their success.
Although Dream Team Entertainment legally consists of only four gentlemen, the love and support is so enormous that Thomas said, “When people ask who’s in Dream Team, we tell them the city of Louisville.”
The most interesting quality about these young men is that party promoting is actually their ‘night job’. Thomas is currently a retail banker and loan officer at Fifth/Third Bank and DJs professionally under the stage name ‘DJ Thru Da Roof’, Ballard and Frank are employed at General Electric and Cross is employed at the Metropolitan Sewer District. The gentlemen also operate a successful lawn care service with a fifth partner, David Moore, called PGA Lawn Care LLC.
The ‘Dream’ began nearly ten years ago when Thomas and Ballard were attending Otterbein University in Ohio. The pair returned to Louisville on a break one semester and attended a party thrown by a local party promotion group.
“I never partied for real but Rich was a party animal…I always had a business mind and I just remember seeing 2000 people and I remember paying $20 to get in so it didn’t take a mathematician to figure the numbers out…I said to Rich, ‘we can do this’, and it literally took off from there.” – Philip Thomas
The duo originally named their company ‘Thru Da Roof Entertainment’ and basically catered to the college crowd. Their biggest challenge at the time were finances.
“Rich was working for a company called National Tobacco and I was working for Citi Financial, we were literally coming out of our pockets to throw parties.” – Philip Thomas
As business expanded, Thomas and Ballard partnered with Cross and Frank and renamed the company “Dream Team Entertainment”. The first major act the group would bring to the city was Hurricane Chris of “A Bay Bay” fame. Later the gentlemen of Dream Team would be the first promoters to bring rapper T.I. to the state of Kentucky.
The four members of Dream Team all come from Louisville’s impoverished West End so giving back to the community is a high priority for them. Every Christmas Dream Team Entertainment holds a ‘Toy Drive’ in memory of Thomas’ mother who was murdered in 2004. They provide toys and funds to less fortunate families and in some cases pay energy and water bills.
“It’s basically about taking the blessings that we’ve received all year and find a way to give back.” – Philip Thomas
Thomas prides himself on passing the knowledge he’s gained through business experiences on to the next individual.
“One of the biggest issues we face in this community and not just here, is the people that are older than us are scared to give us back that knowledge…I don’t know if they are afraid that somebody is going to get ahead of them, or they want to keep it all for themselves or they just don’t feel like it or whatever the case may be, but it’s tearing up our community because if a lot of these entrepreneurs would come back and show people better ways, there would be less drug dealing, less killing, less shooting and more emphasis on school.” – Philip Thomas
You can catch the gentlemen of Dream Team hosting parties every Saturday night at club Legends located at 2523 West Broadway Street, Louisville, KY. Saturday June 13, 2015, the crew will have national recording artist Fabolous at Club LIV (formerly known as O’Malleys) to perform a highly anticipated concert. Tickets are on sale now.