What is your viewpoint on pop music as it pertains to how DJ club culture evolves, how easy it for you to go with the pop-music-dj-culture "flow"?
I see it as an evolution in music. Like everything other genre, it has its time and place. Current pop music is embracing the EDM/Electro culture and it is fitting right into the dj scene and vibe. As a DJ, we need to bend and go with the flow if you're spinning at the venues that caters to pop music. I've been one to believe it is ideal for us to keep an open mind and at least give a fair listen to other genres of music. Pop music may not be for every DJ, I personally can't rock every genre nor am I fan of every genre of music out there, but, my job as a DJ dictates I keep an ear to the people and the people want popular music.
If you had a giant mantle and could make all your personal achievements in Hawaii DJ Culture into plaques to display, what plaques would be up on said mantle?
Whew..That's a good one. Well first off would be the 2002 BBoy Reunion title, A plaque for getting to mix on 94.7 KUMU and for Y100.9 KSXY in Santa Rosa, CA. , Plaques for the various battles I've had the honor to participate in over the many years I've been spinning, A plaque for the clubs and bars I've DJ'd at as a reminder of where I came from in such a short time, and not to sound cheesy, but a plaque for all the homies who've shared knowledge, helped me out and just became a good friend to me.
Big up your crew and 1.) what each member brings to the table 2.) how they have taught or inspired you?
Shouts and Big ups to my fam Krackhand Remixes!!!
DJ Blake: the glue who basically gave us the chance and for most us, the start in the nightclub circuit. He was on of the first DJs I got to see use the Serato Video and take it and run with it. Now, he is making his own edits and just doing some crazy stuff with his live video mixing style. Blake got me into the video mixing scene and I haven't looked back since.
DJ An®ky: He brings the fire and desire to do big things with the crew as well as a talent to rock a party and no fear attitude when it comes to battling. He's up on the new DJ tech and embraces it into his personal style. He keeps pushing me to always stay on top of what's current in tech as well as to keep my hustle on in this industry.
DJ Big John: Brings the experience and mentoring to the crew. He is our guide to keep us on the right path both professionally and personally. He has that smooth mix style with that passion for the old school. John has taught me a lot. From simply just hanging out and reminicising about days gone by or what's current in music and how do we mix it, John gives me great insight.
DJ LT: He brings a fun and chill side to the crew. He's one of the nicest guys I know and always has a smile on his face when I swing by to see him. LT has inspired me to keep teaching and to take leaps of faith like himself when he entered this past years Mai Tai Battle.
DJ Bozu: He brings that untapped skill and just over all desire to be the best in anything he does. He can take something you show him, make it his own and flip it to make it dope. Bozu inspires me to go back to the first years of
my DJ career when I would practice and push myself like crazy.
DJ Midori: Midori is that slilent but deadly weapon. She brings her ability to rock reggae 45s like a seasoned vet, but yet she is willing to learn more to better expand her DJ vocabulary. She has taught me to always seek out more and expand your mind beyond what you've been taught. Also for her to take a leap and DJ at the Mai Tai Battle, she has inspired me to take leaps of faith like LT.
DJ Aristo: My homie Aristo. He is the newest member of the crew. Talk about coming from a mobile/bedroom DJ background and stepping into a club DJ position like he was born to do it. This guy keep me hungry and pushing myself to achieve more. To see him practice and attain what he has as DJ, just makes me think back to when I first started and that fire I had inside of me.
DJ J-Note: Our second female member of the group and EDM veteran in seattle. As she describes herself, "The girl who is one of the guys, just without the p*****" J-note just loves the music and loves to perform. That gives me inspiration to love what I do and to always enjoy the music you spin (hence question number 1 LOL!)
How important is the "DJ 720 image," if at all?
I can't really say I have an image. The only difference between me and me deejaying would be the confidence and that "machismo" of being a DJ. You could compare it to being a Clark Kent/Superman relationship. When I spin, I feel like I have your attention and I'm going to share with you what I think is some great music (no matter what genre) and I'm going to make you dance and enjoy yourself. If you know me, I'm the nicest guy in the world, and when I spin I'm still that same guy. Again, I can't say I do maintain or perpetuate an image. 720 is Donald, Donald is 720.