With the amount of fame Machine Gun Kelly has earned in Cleveland, the musician and entrepreneur sometimes has to handle some awkward fan encounters. One of those happened on Tuesday evening at the Forbes Under 30 Summit, where the star was giving a Town Hall talk on his business endeavors.
In the middle of answering a question about his future plans — he plans to soon start a record label, by the way — a person ran onstage and gestured and spoke to MGK (aka, Colson Baker).
“What are you doing? This is a bad look,” Baker says, addressing the person before they were swept up by a security guard and yanked offstage.
Presumably, the person was trying to pitch Baker on something, based on the musician’s response to the situation.
“My advice for people who have an idea, that want to present it to other creators or people that they believe can be a vessel for their idea, is, like, pick a good time and place. This was a bad time and place,” Baker says.
He continued: “When I’m eating food, and noodles are in my mouth: That's a bad time. When I'm with my daughter at a volleyball game, or I’m being a father, that’s a bad time. I think a lot of that was misunderstood like these are moments that are owed. But a good businessman always knows the time and I think patience is the biggest key to that. The reason why I will wait for things to blossom is because you don't plant the seed and it grows overnight.”
The musician’s success didn’t grow overnight, but it’s certainly bloomed in recent years in Cleveland. A sold-out stadium show, a successful restaurant (27 Club), a nail polish company (UN/DN Laqr) and, of course, his very own day (MGK Day) to commemorate his work in Cleveland every August, are just some of his accomplishments.
Plus, six studio albums — including Billboard chart-toppers Tickets to My Downfall and Mainstream Sellout — already established Baker’s place in pop-rock royalty.
"You need to have a foundation that is going to be indestructible, no matter [the gravity], because gravity is a metaphor for obstacles, it's inevitable," Baker said at the summit. "And so the city is my rock. Like, I know that anything that I build here has a support that isn't going to break, no matter what."
At the Forbes Under 30 Summit, hosted in downtown Cleveland’s Public Auditorium, Baker chatted with moderator Kristin Stoller about the intersections between his work in performance and entrepreneurship. On Tuesday, he joined other speakers like comedian Matt Rife, Alix Earle and Druski. The Cleveland native was a highlight of the summit and brought in about 70 audience questions for the interactive event.
However, Baker’s conversation got a little shaken after the disruptive surprise stage visit.
“I can’t lie, my energy’s a little scattered from that. I empathize and feel for the guy. But there’s a time and a place,” Baker says. “But I don’t ever want to shut down anyone’s dream.”