Q&A with Producer Dj Da Don
If you have never heard of Dj Da Don get used to hearing the name behind the music of some of hip-hop’s biggest artists. Dj Da Don has worked with artists such as Moneybagg Yo, Kash Doll, G herbo, and Lil Durk. He has recently been working with rapper Lil Boosie and was at the Boosie Estates in Atlanta, GA this summer where he spent time in the studio working on what we call HEAT! You can find Dj Da Don in national magazines such as The Source, Hip-Hop Weekly, and Respect Magazine. His hustle and grind keep him moving around, state to state. Believe it or not, one state he is familiar with is Iowa. One artist that he has worked and toured with in Iowa is Lil Durk. I had the pleasure of meeting Dj Da Don back in May of 2019 at the Lil durk concert in Des Moines, Iowa. We chopped it up and this interview has been overdue.
Q: Tell us how did you get the name Dj Da Don?
A: To make a long story short, my middle name is Dj. I played strong safety and running back when I was in high school. The way I used to run the ball was unbelievable. Everyone used to say “Man, you run like a Don”. Around that same time Lil Wayne had the hit “Go Dj”. By that being my middle name, it stuck. From there on my colleagues and friends called me Dj Da Don and I ran with it. I have been called that since I was 16 years old.
Q: What have you been doing to stay busy, and what are you doing to keep the bag coming in during this pandemic?
A: Man, to be honest with you, I have been doing the same thing. Staying home, going to the studio, working on beats, and sending beats out. At times like this the quickest sales are from local artists. They help producers like myself stay afloat. Producers are able to give out better deals on beats and have more time to work on music. Artists have a lot of time to write and with that they need beats to listen to, so they have been buying beats more than ever.
Q: So, you were recently just working with rapper Lil Boosie and had the opportunity to go to his crib and work in his studio. How was that experience? What can fans look forward to from that collab?
A: Man, the experience at his house was amazing. He gave me the grand tour and we got in the studio. We’ve recorded 3 tracks so far. He recently sent me back one of the tracks we worked on and we got some heat! So, if not in 2020, look out for a DJ Da Don and Boosie collab coming 2021.
Q: Let’s talk about some accomplishments you feel have made an impact on your career. What may those be? What is some good advice you can give to someone who is looking to make it into the music industry?
A: Accomplishments, I would say being around the right people such as Durk and Chief Keef, and the connections I have made with Moneybagg Yo. They are the ones that have opened doors for me. It becomes a domino effect once one hit is made. Everyone else follows suit slowly but surely. It is about being persistent and very precise because then you have the ability to chill with artists where they are able to hear your music. From there it makes an impact on your career because then people start to pay attention to your work. As far as advise, at the end of the day it’s about staying grounded, staying focused, and staying consistent. There are so many distractions which make it difficult to elevate to the next level. It is easy to get mixed up in the partying and traveling. You have to stay focused on what you have going on and not let things go over your head.
Q: Where do you currently reside and tell me what the music scene is like where you live?
A: Right now, I am in Miami,it is like any major city. Miami is a city to go to if you want your music heard. If you have any club bangers the radio is where it starts. Miami is a wonderful city to get your music career started, from there it trickles down to every other state. The music scene is good, a lot of artists come out of Florida. You always have somebody who is up next and that is one thing I love about it. You always know, in a blink of an eye, that the next move or in the next year you are going to have somebody from Florida that is on top of the game.
A: So not only have you been to Iowa on tour with Lil Durk, but you also lived in Iowa at one point. Tell me how did you end up in Iowa? And what was that experience like?
Q: I ended up in Iowa playing football for Iowa Western College. I received a scholarship there to play football and I ran track. After a year doing that, I had to find something for myself, and that is when I got into the music industry. The experience in Iowa was wonderful coming from Miami living a fast pace lifestyle. Iowa is much slower and to be honest I am happy I got things started in Iowa. I was able to take my time and not rush the process. In any other city you would have to rush the process but in Iowa you have the ability to learn, you have the ability to educate yourself, and there aren’t many distractions like in Miami. You do your everyday routine, everyone knows everybody, so it keeps you grounded and focused. Its very family orientated and that is another thing I like about it. It also gives you the time to grow. I was able to practice my craft then take it to Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, and maneuver through these cities. That is how I was able to go to Memphis and gain relationships with these artists, their mangers, or someone from their team. I was able to get these placements that I have and build those relationships that I still have to this day.
Q: What are the next moves for you?
A: I have the tracks with Boosie. I have a football player by the name of Money Bo who used to play for Kansas City Chiefs. I have a few tracks on his project that he is working on right now. We have something in motion with Blacc Youngsta and with Money Man. I have some tracks on an album from an artist out of Detroit named 42 Dubb. I am also working with another Detroit artist who resides in Iowa by the name of Kev Krouse. We have a lot going on and that is exactly how we want it. The future is bright, and I am satisfied with that.
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