Monster DJs Big Tigger and More Reveal Why “Respecting The DJ” Is Hip-Hop’s Job Number One [Part 1]

Monster DJ

What does it mean to be a Monster DJ? 

It means that whatever your style – electro, melodic, trance, house, hip-hop – you are committed to killing the dance floor. It’s substance over style and the beat over anything. It’s knowing that the lifestyle is nothing compared to the music and the flow.

It’s remixing right down to the tiniest detail and pushing your mixer, your turntables, your headphones, your amps and cables to the absolute limit to get your fans off the wall with their hands in the air.

With that in mind, and as a follow-up to our month-long “Salute the Spin Doctors” series earlier this year, AllHipHop.com is featuring a number of Monster DJs – like DJ Mark Da Spot, Big Tigger, DJ Baby Yu, Amanda Seales and more – and asking them how they got their start, who their favorite spinners are, and why it’s so important to “respect the DJ.”

Check out Part 1 of our Monster DJs feature below:

DJ Mark Da Spot

I Became A DJ Because:

It ran in my family, and once I tried it out, I fell in love with it! It doesn’t hurt that I grew up on and love music; because of that music is my life.

My Favorite DJ’s Are:

Kid Capri and DJ Craig G because of their skills of mixing and MC’ing at the same time. They are what I call REAL party-rocking DJs! They don’t just play music they put on a show.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

The DJ is the party! The DJ is the one breaking the records, the DJ is an artist, and a DJ’s job is not an easy one. We work just as hard as the artist making the music; well, some DJs do.

DJ Qness

I Became A DJ Because:

I have always had the unique and amazing talent of being able to read a crowd at first glance, and be able to pick out what they can dance and move their body to, and this is what a DJ does. He takes a crowd he has never seen or been with before and just entertains. It takes him one glance to know the crowd, and that’s me. The thought of using music to control a crowd has fascinated me from day one, and up to this day, it continues to. Every time I play it feels like I’m playing for the first time, and yet, I’ve been in the game for years.

My Favorite DJ Is:

DJ Khaled. He may not be the number one DJ in the world right now, but I truly respect his hustle. He came into the game and gave hope to DJs like myself. He made it clear to us that we, too, are possible. Looking at his journey from his first album, to signing a deal with YMCMB, to reaching the point where he is right now to all the collabos and platinum records, I truly respect his hustle.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

Hate it or love it, DJs have become trendsetters. You may not like a record for the first time when hearing it, but the more DJs in the club pump it, the more they exercise their power to make the masses love or hate something. In that regard, a DJ needs to be respected as the success of a record almost entirely depends on them depending on how much they love it, and how many spins they will give it, whether it be in a club or on the radio environment.

DJ Shelly Flash

How I Became A DJ:

I am often mistaken for a DJ – the modern day “I’m with the DJ” shirt rocker.  As a radio personality and event host, I have promoted, toured, hosted with, and rocked alongside several DJs in my career – gaining the moniker from many as “a DJ’s partner in crime.”  I was bitten by the DJ bug early on since getting my start in radio as a mixshow coordinator and having an absurd vinyl collection.

My Favorite DJ Is:

DJ Irie because he makes memories through music; he is personable and not too Hollywood.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

Respect for both DJs and their craft lies beyond a 45, and in the fact that a DJ conducts the moods of many through music. They select the transition, the record, and the time to play it for a party of anywhere from one to several thousand. Music is the universal language, and the DJ is the ultimate translator.

DJ Shogun

I Became A DJ:

After seeing Jam Master Jay, Red Alert, Kid Capri, Eric B, Marley Marl, DJ Premier, Jazzy Jeff, and Pete Rock do their respective things. Inevitably, the turntables called me to them. The love of Hip-Hop, that boom-bap, it was just so undeniable. I had to be more involved, outside of break-dancing and doodling with graffiti. The power of moving the crowd and creating a vibe in a basement, club, or arena was MY calling. So one hot New York summer, I used funds from messenger work to purchase my first DJ set, and the passion took off and became a reality.

My Favorite DJ Is:

DJ Premier – although it’s hard to name just one. The head-banger tracks he produced alongside the magnificent scratching did it for me, and I have to say, in terms of the club DJ/Party-Rocker, Kid Capri is another favorite; the way he rocks a crowd is legendary. Those two, for me, each embody the many facets of the DJ.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

The DJ has to be respected because, without us, there’s no music being played properly in the clubs and on the radio. DJ’ing is a real art form for those that adhere to its “rules.” To be able to read a crowd, dictate how you want them to move, and create the “mood” for an event takes a skill that can’t be bought at your neighborhood music or electronics store. Going back to the Father of Hip-Hop, Kool Herc, the DJ is the starting point and backbone of Hip-Hop music.

People seem to forget that it was Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince, Eric B and Rakim, the list goes on. The DJ is the rock star, but celebrity DJs are popping up everywhere now, and I hope that all these “new jacks” will respect and honor the culture the way they should.

Funky Pharoah

I Became A DJ Because:

It is the most creative form of musical performance. The ability to blend in a range of different songs from different genres and make them something completely different and better than the original, and then viewing the look of surprise and appreciation on the face of your fans and listeners, is a better rush than any drug in the world.

My Favorite DJ Is:

DJ Chuckie, the lord of Dirty Dutch, because he has the magical ability to bring the worlds of Urban Music and Electro-Dance together, and make them gel harmoniously like no other person on this planet.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

Because he or she is the most important person in the music industry. We control dance floors, move people, make records, break records, and give the most honest and quickest feedback ever! If it ain’t monstrous, we ain’t approving of it!

DJ MLK

I Became A DJ Because:

It was a passed-down hobby, or you can say it was a talent I was born with. My dad was mobile DJ, so it was something I was around 24/7 growing up.

My Favorite DJ Is:

I’ve got a lot, but I’m going to say the first name that comes to mind is DJ Nabs. This guy has the complete package of an all-around DJ.

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

Because we as DJs carve the path of the artist’s career.

Big Tigger

How I Became A DJ:

I became a DJ in the ninth grade because of my love for music, and because it was the thing to do growing up in the Bronx. I was a beatboxer and MC already, so I decided to learn how to DJ from two of my best friends.

My Favorite DJ Is:

It’s a tie between DJ Jazzy Jeff, DJ Scratch, and the late great Jam Master Jay. All three were pioneers in many regards, and have skills that have yet to be matched to this day!

Why We Need To “Respect The DJ”:

Respect is necessary because, even though technology has allowed a lot of people to “masquerade” as DJs, real DJs are unique individuals who not only make the party jump, but provide the soundtrack to memories for the rest of your life!

Check back next week for Part 2 of our Monster DJ feature.

For more information on Monster DJs, visit www.MonsterDJ.com.

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