I was introduced to this DJ/artist via a contact in my Linkedin account named Sasha Marina who is a host, actress, and the CEO of The Sasha Marina Show based in my hometown of Miami, FL. She was nice enough to ink this interview with this very busy and emerging DJ/artist to the stars who travels the world rocking the house. Here is what this very creative DJ/artist has to say about himself, his music, and life:
Jay - Were you born in Miami, If no, where?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Born in New Jersey [and] raised in the sunny south Florida.
Jay - When did you start DJ'ing, how old were you?
DJ Smiley Miami -- I was 16 and I fell in love early from watching my brother Ballisic Billy DJ with real vinyl and how he could control a huge party of people. My first gigs were family gatherings; then [it] led to bigger things like proms and homecomings.
Jay -- What was your primary motivation for getting into the business?
DJ Smiley Miami -- The love for the music and how I could control a large group of people with the music and make them dance, sweat, and have a good time.
Jay -- Who was your biggest influence in starting this business, and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- DJ A.M.; I remember seeing him at a local club in Miami and his turntableism skills and the way he rocked the crowd and kept them on their toes.
Jay - When and what was your first paid gig?
DJ Smiley Miami -- It was prom in high-school. I was 16 got paid $200. I probably would have done it for free. I had my whole school dancing -- at least I like to think I did.
Jay -- Who came up with your stage name and what is its significance to you as a DJ?
DJ Smiley Miami - Growing up I was the class clown; always had jokes, so my freshmen year, the upper classmen and friends started to call me smiley. So, I figured since I wanted the partiers to dance and have a good time, my name should reflect that, so the name Smiley came about. I added the Miami [in 2011] when I started producing my own music.
Jay -- What do you like the least about your business and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- The cut throats. Not everyone you deal with is real, and there is so much competition I am forced to work on my craft every day so I will remain the best at what I do; but I gotta say, I do like the challenge.
Jay -- What do you like the most about your business and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Taking people away; making them take flight while on the dance floor, and losing control while waiting for my next move.PLUR....
Jay -- What question(s) are you tired of answering over and over again?
DJ Smiley Miami -- What's your favorite song? I have so many to list.
Jay -- What is your favorite city and/or country to DJ, and why?
DJ Smiley Miami - Dubai UaE. They love me there. I performed with Jason Derulo and Sean Kingston at a huge festival and since then I've been back twice; coolest place on earth since it's illegal to burn music from the web -- so the fans really support me.
Jay -- What is your favorite venue to DJ and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Sun Life Stadium; 50k people. It's always fun to rock a stadium; especially in my home town -- and the energy that comes with that venue is insane.
Jay -- Who is your personal favorite DJ and why?
DJ Smiley Miami - It's a mix between Steve Aoki and DJ A.M.; I like Steve because he's one hell of a performer. He keeps you engaged and asking what's next and DJ A.M. because his mash-ups are insane and also the way he could rock any genre and mix in so clean.
Jay - What has been your most favorite celebrity gig and why?
DJ Smiley Miami - Well, there is the last two. One was performing on TV for Univision's biggest award show -- Premios Juventude; 300 million viewers. I was super nervous; I threw up backstage before I got on stage and rocked the funk out of it, and the Madonna concert, I was the opening act and they told me to play an hour more because she was late. I had that stadium on fire, no one was sitting down; the arena was on a thousand.
Jay -- I see you incorporate quite a bit of high-tech effects during your gigs; how much of that do you personally produce?
DJ Smiley Miami -- All of it; I put a lot of work into my show. I put a lot in the production as well, and I always have something new up my sleeves and thanks to the Beamz DJ interactive player I can control the lighting system at the festival or club. Using the laser Beamz you gotta check it out for yourself and I was the first DJ to incorporate robots in a show -- the Take Flight show -- which I am showcasing on my tour. Big Red Miami is a red dwarf Martian from planet Pachanga.
Jay - How much input do you have in your website?
DJ Smiley Miami -- I had celebrity designer Courtney Six put it together with my ideas and his knowledge. I wanted to make it user-friendly for my fans and I always put free mixes up for my fans to stay attached.
Jay -- Do you have any hobbies outside of DJ'ing, if yes, what are they?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Family is a big thing for me; so when I'm not blowing up the dance floor, I'm spending time with my 2 sons as much as possible. We go the beach and fish a lot.
Jay -- Is your family supportive of what you do?
DJ Smiley Miami - Yes, they love to see me happy and this is what I love to do.
Jay -- What is your most memorable gig and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Black Eyed Peas concert at Sun Life Stadium Nov. 23, the day before Thanksgiving; it was the Black Eyed Peas last concert [in 2011]. Looking out into the crowd and making the crowd go insane I was feeding off their energy. I even crowd surfed and got punched [Down there]. The bouncers put me back on stage and I had to play it off like nothing ever happened.
Jay -- What is your favorite music genre and why?
DJ Smiley Miami -- I love EDM [Electronic Dance Music]. These last couple of months I've been in Miami developing my own genres and working on my album which is electro Latino and Latin trap house. Traveling to different continents and countries I have learned to love all types of music and I believe the world needs Latin trap house and I'm gonna give it to them.
Jay -- What advice would you give a young kid who wants to DJ for a living?
DJ Smiley Miami - Well, I'm actually mentoring and training a boy by the name of Shiloh DJ. He is a 15 year old battling cancer and his dream is to learn how to DJ; so I have been showing him and giving him advice on moving the crowd and song selection, but my biggest advice I would give any one is practice and don't stop hustling -- keep your eye on the prize and take flight on your dreams.
Jay- I notice you say "Take Flight" a lot, what does that mean?
DJ Smiley Miami -- Take Flight is a life style basically to be positive and move to a better state of mind. Like taking flight on your dreams whether it's dancing on the dance floor and turning up, or taking flight on your life and moving forward for the better. So, when I say take flight, it means to keep it positive and keep going.
Jay - What can your fans look forward to -- say in the near and far future for DJ Smiley Miami?
DJ Smiley Miami - I'm releasing my new genre of music and singles next month [June 2013]; some of the songs include Take Flight featuring Scotty Boi, Jump On It featuring El Pichy Boys, Latin Trap featuring Madai Somaya Reece, and I hope that all the people reading this knows I am not going anywhere and by the grace of God, this is just the beginning. I am leaving on my Take Flight tour with dates in Asia, Dubai, South America, and Australia this month [May 2013]. I am looking forward to meeting all the new fans.
Jay -- What are your final thoughts concerning your business, yourself, and your future endeavors?
DJ Smiley Miami - I just wanna say thank you to you guys and your interest in interviewing me, and to the fans that support me. There is more to come. My dream is to perform at this year's Ultra Fest in Miami. So, my next step is getting signed to a major label and Take Flight. Anything is possible if you work hard enough. Oh yea, follow me on Instagram and twitter @smileymiami.
Thank you guys.
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