Real Talk w/ DJ Toma


Is it easier to read crowds today because of your experience or would you say crowds tend to demand less, meaning what they want to hear is very predictable?
I would agree that crowds now are very particular in certain styles of music when you play for festivals or big club style. But any DJ with a strong background in proper programming can manipulate the crowd and introduce different styles of music.

Steve Aoki recently revealed that he wasn’t really a DJ? Did he do a disservice to DJs everywhere for faking the funk?
I met Steve a couple times. His background as an A&R agent for upcoming rock groups allowed him to learn alot about the music industry and that’s how he got his start. Along with his love for house music, he wanted to hear more edgy tunes and started Dim Mak as he got going. His focus is not on turntablism or mixing but just to put on a goodtime. I think that’s where he draws the line so he’s not compared to a lot of the other DJs out there. Personally, he’s a dope DJ and does a great show which attracts a crowd, isn’t that why we’re all here?

Hawaii clubs always try to emulate the Vegas vibe, what are you thoughts on this and have they ever get it right?

I feel that owners of clubs outside of Las Vegas try to emulate the Vegas vibe because they see the money they hope to make. I believe if you stick to your clientele and cater to them, you will create a particular vibe that matches your clients wants. In the end, that’s why clubs open, so owners make money.

Could you tell me more about the family and business reasons that led to you moving back to the 808? When did you move back?
I have been involved in the Food and Beverage industry for about 15 years along with DJing. From doing promotions to catering huge festivals to helping out with our past venture, Viec Inferno Brewery, business has always been in my blood and I love the challenge.

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