Published on April 12th, 2012 | by Paterson Prosper5
Lifestyles Defined Exclusive Interview with DJ Uptown
I recently got a chance to interview a good friend of mine, he goes by the name of DJ Uptown. Those that are into the Boston EDM scene; should know his name by now. He has DJ’d countless clubs around Boston and all over globe. I myself is a big fan of his, and was excited that he had time to conduct an interview for Lifestyles Defined. Also check out his guest appearance on “The Saucy Entertainment Show”.
“Hello, I am Ahmed Shawi, most people know me as Uptown. I moved to Boston, MA in 2005 from the Persian Gulf. I grew up in a tiny island in the middle east where music was my passion and transferred into my blood at a very early age from my uncle who was in a music band himself back in his time. I’ve been playing records for over 12 years now and I was very diverse with my sound until I found the world of EDM. I’ve experienced many different settings and vibes from small lounge parties to major concert 7,000 people + events. I shared stages with some big name artists and celebrities in Bahrain, Dubai, Lebanon, Amsterdam, U.S, and Mexico. I love to travel and meet people who share the similar interests as I do as well as perform for the very selective crowd that exist around the world.”
So how did it all begin?
At a very young age, when i was 12 actually. I loved to move and dance and joined many competitions. The music never seemed to work for me that other djs played therefore I had to bring in my own selection. I decided to give it a shot to become a Disc Jockey when in middle school, I was asked to do the gathering party. One thing lead to another and next thing you know I was investing and saving up for equipment and taught myself how to spin records and arrange and organize my collection to later picking up some major gigs working with the US navy as well as nightclubs and private events around my area.
Where did the name come from?
Funny but true story, from my favorite Jersey that I had. I was just referred as using my real name when I had picked up my first club residency, it was suggested to me to come up with a stage/nickname and I wanted something to represent me. Uptown meaning high rise, high class hence within my music. It is not for everyone
Did the Djing, Production, Promoting come 1st?
Djing came first for sure. I picked it up because of my passion for music and love for playing music. I then had to promote myself as basically a stand alone Dj that represented myself playing other artists music. The production came at a later stage when I picked up the art and decided it was time to actually compose and create my own tunes.
Who’s the best dj out right now?
This one is tough because I can’t really say that theres a best dj out there. Everyone is unique in their sound and unique in their style. The way I would judge a dj is based on his/her skills and definitely not how many people or following he or she has. I understand it is very important for a Dj to have a following so they create a market buzz however just as myself, many underground djs and I consider myself underground, are as what I was even told once, "hidden talent". I am influenced by many Djs but never copy them because you need to come up with your own style and touch.
What was the first event you ever played?
A Middle School dance
What’s the best event you’ve played at?
Marina Club in Bahrain. Average around 7,000 people.
So how is the scene in your eyes at the moment?
Sad. This is the word I would use to describe it because many and new upcoming Djs that are coming out have no respect to what the art of mixing music is all about. I learned the tough way and I understand that technology is there but it should be to make a good dj better, not create so called train wrecks to auto mix and sync.
What was the most satisfying moment as a dj?
When you feel the vibe and energy of the crowd response. People who can actually understand what it is you are doing and appreciate it and thank you for rocking their time.
I would like to personally thank DJ Uptown for taking time out of his busy schedule to conduct an interview for us. Be sure to check him out on the links listed down below. You can catch him at Cure Lounge this Friday (4-13-12) in Boston, Ma.
Sound Cloud – http://soundcloud.com/uptownboston