As a DJ for more than half my living life, I have seen it and been through it all. Working as a DJ on the radio and playing clubs on the weekend has been a blessing for all these years. From making mixtapes with actual cassettes to battling on wax, the feeling to do what you love and getting paid for it is a wonderful feeling!
Now with today’s era of digital DJ systems, I’ve seen wannabes come and go. That’s what I love about U92’s DJ search. You have to come with skill! Becoming an All Star Mixer is something celebrated. From rocking live on the air, mixing at remotes and receiving gigs at clubs. The All Star Mixer stamp of approval means you are serious about this craft and it also gives you respect in the music industry. Just playing in front of tens of thousands at some of the biggest shows brings your body the greatest rush in the world!
When I saw the hunger in the eyes of the DJs who battled it out at our 2nd phase of our DJ comp, I knew that they wanted to show and prove that they have what it takes. All those long nights in the basement practicing diligently would finally pay off.
Big ups to all who competed. Even if you did not move on to the next phase, you still showed heart. Here are some of the DJ’s that made a killer impression to me.
DJ MC – Look out for this turntable terrorist. The cuts were on point and mix of songs flowed great through his whole set. As a turntablist for years, I appreciate what he came with. It was great to see some beat juggling while not taking away from the party set. (turntable tricks with both turntables creating a new beat like a drummer.)
DJ Celly Cel – He probably caught me the most by surprise! His transitions were flawless and transform scratches rode the whole set nicely. Cel reminded me of the golden era of battle DJin’. Not only was his set well prepared and executed, but his showmanship added that rock star touch!
DJ Matty Mo – I’ve seen this guy do his thing and heard some of his mixes. The dude has a following, and no wonder why? He has a natural way about playing with turntables and making everything sound great! Probably the cleanest set of the night in my mind.
DJ Will Wonder – This guy is a vet in the game and you could tell. Great mix and I loved how he brought the essence of Hip Hop battle DJs from back in the day with his set. The lyrics of songs bring a wordplay of taunting to his competition. CLASSIC!
DJ J Style – Out of all the DJs, his scratch level game was a 10. This guy has really came up in the past 4 years. Great selection of club records and scratch styles left an awesome impression to all that attended. PLUS, he was the first DJ of the night. That itself is something hard to overcome a clean set. He did it with super composure!
These were the DJ’s that stood out in my mind. I was not a judge for this leg of the competition and had no input on who got to move on. All I know is this competition is getting better with each phase.
The next round is the on air mixing. Be sure to listen Weds 7/20, Thursday 7/21, Friday 7/22, Tuesday 7/26 during the 9 o’clock Block Party at 9 PM to see what these DJs who have advanced bring to the airwaves. Good Luck!