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The Mad Men

Skeme Richards

Hailing from Philadelphia a city known for birthing internationally known DJ’s such as Jazzy Jeff, Cash Money, King Brit and Rich Medina, Skeme Richards has put in nearly 30 years of DJing, Producing and induldging within other aspects of Hip Hop culture.  Diggin and spinning everything from Funk & Soul, Classics, Hip Hop, Breaks, House and all things funky he continuously strives to seperate himself from the pack while maintaining a first class status and satisfying his listeners at the same time.  Since becoming a DJ for the world famous Rock Steady Crew, Skeme has had the opportunity to play events, parties and festivals worldwide and has mastered the art of keeping dance floors packed by setting the tone early and reading his crowd properly.

Skeme has shared turntable duties with some of the best in the industry including Maseo (De La Soul), Shortkut (Beat Junkies), Tony Touch, Bobbito, Rob Swift (The X-Ecutioners), DJ Nu-Mark (Jurassic 5), Pete Rock, DJ Premier, DJ Eclipse, J.Rocc (Beat Junkies), Miles (Breakestra), DJ Muro, DJ P-Trix, Greg Belson and other highly respected DJ’s.

In addition to being a globally known DJ, Skeme has also become recognized in the collectors market as a major collector of Black cinema memorabilia, film posters and other highly sought after items from personalities like Pam Grier, Fred Williamson, Jim Brown, Issac Hayes, Julius ”Dr. J” Erving, Muhammad Ali and the legendary Bruce Lee.  These pieces have recently introduced him to the gallery scene which many of his items have been on display for audiences to see.

Corporate Clients Include: Red Bull, Absolut Vodka, Adidas, Puma Brand, Wax Poetics, Food Nation, Stoli and others.

 

Supreme La Rock

Supreme La Rock

With discerning taste for styles and an impeccably defined character, this world-class DJ and cultural icon continues to raise the bar by breaking new artists and continuing to exude impact on night lifestyle while maintaining the integrity and richness of authentic DJ culture. Versatile and unique, Supreme applies technicality and musicianship to his craft, with an eloquent and educated approach to music that holds true in his demeanor on and off the decks. He is rare in the realm of DJ’s that have both respect by pioneers and professionals along side appeal and admiration in the club world. With his vast library and musical knowledge; he applies this richness to seamless blends and superior capabilities to read, move, and interact with the crowd. Making a night of DJing a musical masterpiece unparalled by most.

Supreme La Rock is for the music connoisseur as he is for the people who lack resources and the knowledge to delve deeper into music. Not moved by facade, rather led by inspiration, choosing not to follow trends but rather to tastefully set them.

 

J-Zone

“My childhood aspirations of playing bass in a funk band died when Jheri curls fell out of fashion and the funk pioneers got bogged down with child support payments at the end of the 1980s. Shuttling back and forth between Jamaica, Queens and Westchester County (New York), I discovered that rap music was more than just an instruction manual for my teenage debauchery; it was a viable career option. Given, there was no 401k and a higher likelihood of being shot than in Corporate America, but my average lifespan on nine-to-five jobs has been about two months.

After my first internship at Power Play Studios (Queens, NY) in 1992, I met Vance Wright (Slick Rick’s DJ), who owned and operated Vee-Dubbs recording studio in New Rochelle, NY. I started working there in 1994, at the age of 17. I learned the basics of the music biz, audio engineering, and being a gofer (one of my first assignments was to pick up grilled turkey sandwiches for Greg Nice of Nice-N-Smooth). All of the money I made during that time was blown at the mall or diggin’ for records, like a real 18-year-old aspiring rap personality is supposed to do. I still had my mama’s health insurance then, so it was cool.

I went on to attend Purchase College (State University of New York) and my senior project was called Music For Tu Madre, an album that became my debut release on my slapdash Old Maid Entertainment label in 1999. I followed up with a whole shitload of albums: A Bottle of Whup Ass in 2000, Pimps Don’t Pay Taxes in 2001, Sick of Bein’ Rich in 2003, A Job Ain’t Nuthin’ but Work in 2004, Gimme Dat Beat Fool in 2005, Boss Hog Barbarians: Every Hog Has Its Day (with longtime collaborator, Celph Titled), Experienced!, and To Love a Hooker (the instrumental soundtrack to a non-existent film) all in 2006, and Live at the Liqua Sto (featuring Chief Chinchilla) in 2008. There were some limited edition side projects during that time frame as well. Most of those albums can be found on iTunes, bit torrents that I don’t make any money off of, and eBay for $2; all of them went copper.

I’ve since stepped down from my post as the rapping resident kingpin of lampoonery because I’m too old to be on 106 & Park and they don’t offer Glucerna in show riders. I was always best known as a producer and engineer anyway. I’ve worked with Biz Markie, E-40, Lonely Island (from Saturday Night Live), Gnarls Barkley (Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo), Masta Ace, King T, Pete Rock, Prince Paul, R.A. the Rugged Man, Large Professor, Tha Alkaholiks, Del tha Funkee Homosapien, and Devin The Dude, to name a few. I’m also one half of DJ crew Extra Chee$e (my man DJ Sheep is the other half); we’ve torn up parties from The UK, to Germany, to Australia, to Arizona. My Gator$-n-Fur$ radio shows are a good place to start if you need glimpses of my all-over-the-place musical taste and approach to DJing. I also teach  a music business and production course at Purchase College (Professor Zone in the house). I’ll still knock out a funky beat and get on the turntables for wreck,, but spotting me mingling in the music business today is reminiscent of playing a game of Where’s Waldo?

As a writer, I’m an opinionated curmudgeon with a 1990-something New York attitude. I’m also the spokesman for unpopular opinion and same the torch-carrier for lampoonery that I was when I was wearing my rap hat. My first book, Root for the Villain: Rap, Bullshit, and a Celebration of Failure, is out now and has received endorsements from hip-hop figures like Chuck D and Questlove and has been propped in media outlets like the L.A. Times, The Onion A.V. Club, Hiphop DX. The book also made SPIN Magazine’s Top 10 Books Of 2011 list.  My writing has been published in textbooks (Common Culture: Sixth Edition; Prentice Hall, 2009) and magazines (SLAM, The Source, Hip-Hop Connection). I’m also a regular contributor for Ego Trip NYC). Hopefully when all is said and done, I’ll finally have enough clout to refer to myself in the third person. Peace.”

 

Amir

For over two decades, DJ Amir Abdullah has stayed alive in the music business by a careful balancing act. On the one side, DJ Amir is a club rocking, crate digging, turntable purist. On the other hand, Amir Abdullah is a deft businessman, working behind the scenes at such venerable labels as Fat Beats Records, Rapster/K7 Records in Germany, and most recently as the label head of Wax Poetics Records. It’s this savvy approach to both sides of the business that has allowed Amir to stay working and relevant in an industry that is constantly in transition.

DJ Amir’s start in the music business began not as a selector, but as a listener. From an early age, Amir’s ears were saturated in the sounds of jazz, gospel, soul, and disco. As the youngest member of his family, Amir had a hard time getting his music played. When he was old enough, Amir sought to shed the music of his parents by tuning into the world of hip-hop. Yet instead of finding an escape, Amir discovered the music of his home in the music of his peers. The samples in his favorite songs played like a panoramic remix of his parents’ turntable. Soon Amir found himself tracing ties inside the music, mining the myriad connection between jazz, funk, disco, soul, and hip-hop. If he found a sound he couldn’t identify, it was only a matter of time before the young Amir unearthed the source.

Ever since, Amir has been a man on a music mission. He’s braved the strange and dangerous locations for the rarest wax, dealt with the shadiest characters and collectors, and had his knowledge called upon by some of the biggest names in hip-hop. It was during the 1990s, while making a name for himself as a respected DJ and collector that Amir broke into the business side of the music industry. Beginning in the marketing department of Fat Beats Inc, within a few years Amir was promoted to company’s vice president of sales. Since leaving Fat Beats, Amir has worked freelance A&R for Rapster Records, been the sales manager for ABB Records, and is currently the acting label manager of Wax Poetics Records in Brooklyn, NY.

Amir has acted as both resident DJ and as touring turntable star. A few of Amir’s most recent and notable gigs include the Do Over Party in LA, the Grand Groove Party at APT in NYC (with Chairman Mao), the Southport Weekender festival in Southport UK,  Sunsplash  Festival in Anatalya, Turkey, and the Wax Poetics Japan Issue #1 release party in Tokyo. Acting as more than just a live DJ, Amir have a discography that extends back far. Beginning with the esteemed underground On Track mixtape series, Amir along with his partner Kon have released over nine compilations, including The King of Diggin album on BBE, two volumes of Off Track, the follow-up series to their legendary On Track mixes. With the third volume of Off Track set for release from BBE in March 2010 and a fourth volume already in the works, Kon and Amir show no signs of slowing down.

Regardless of industry trends, Amir continues to quietly make moves his own way. Choosing substance over show, Amir makes waves without making noise. It’s this kind of shrewd business sensibility and working command of music that makes Amir so highly regarded in the world of hot wax. Shady Records, Dr. Dre, Pete Rock, Diamond D, and Capitol Records (to name but a few) have called upon Kon and Amir’s respected expertise. Amir’s client list has included Dilated Peoples, Big L, Pete Rock, Jay Dee, Madlib, Mandrill, The Mizell Brothers, Common, Lyman Woodard and Dennis Coffey. In a world where anybody with a laptop and an iPod fancies themselves a DJ, Amir is here to keep the true tradition of the turntable alive.

 

Kamui 

 

DJ Kamui Sumida has been spinning and collecting records for well over a decade.  Kamui has shared the stage and opened for significant artists, including Talib Kweli, DJ Craze and DJ Krush. Originally hailing from Osaka, Japan, Kamui spent much of his musically-formative years in Seattle Washington, where he hooked up the Seattle record label/art crew known as Fourthcity. Collaborating with friends and fellow DJs Bumble Bee, Hideki Yamamoto, AbsoluteMadman, Introcut & Rei, a legendary weekly Tuesday night called Stop Biting was created – a collective party that has continued strong since its 2004 birth, still going down at the LoFi Performance Gallery in Seattle every Tuesday.

Kamui recently moved to Brooklyn, NY and has been avidly building up his prized collection of rare 45s and funk/soul records. Upon his relocation, he quickly linked up with likeminded collectors and DJs in New York and has rocked parties with pioneers Rich Medina and Q Tip at Santo’s Party House. When Sumida is spinning 45s from his treasured collection, his technical skill is obvious as he nimbly mixes and juggles rare gems and priceless records, never failing to engage any crowd. Kamui continues to steadily rock a variety of esteemed NYC parties, recently sharing the spotlight with the  originator of the legendary Hot Peas & Butta party, Skeme Richards. Kamui continues to consistently deliver and receive the heart- and-soul of musical vivacity and quench the thirst to get down no matter the time and stage – and always with a distinguishable dynamism no doubt inspired by the universal groove.