Being a DJ in the midst of the nightlife chaos, with the booze and bodies flying about on the dance floor, can lead to some seriously awkward – and seriously funny – moments. The DJs from this week’s cover story – DJ Hakan, DJ Castro, DJ Spark Madden, and DJ Ralphsta – shared with us some of the craziest things that have happened to them during their time behind the mic. And here they are.
DJ Ralphsta: “The craziest thing, still to this day, was when I first started. I was doing a sold out event here at the (Durango) Arts Center, and somebody wanted to come up on stage. He wanted to show me how they DJ while I was headlining, and they didn’t like it. So they started a fight right then and there. I was mid-song and they wanted to fight. So, what I did was, I just knocked him on the ground and kept mixing. And then, by the time security got up there – they had to work through the crowd – I went back to him, and I said, ‘You want to try to mess with my set?’ Everything else we’ve done has been pretty structured since then. I really try to keep a good repertoire. (Otherwise) people don’t hear from you for 10 years, and that’s all they think of.”
DJ Hakan Aybar: “Okay. So this is just one example. So a girl came to me and says, ‘Hey, my friend is getting married tomorrow.’ I guess (it was) what they call (a) bachelor party. So she’s asking me, she says, ‘Can you play the (Ginuwine) Pony song? I want somebody to give her a lap dance. I thought, this is gonna be an innocent lap dance, that’s gonna be fun. Well, some guy in the crowd was actually a stripper, a dancer, and he started dancing on her and she just goes nuts, taking off her shirt and rubbing on him like this (rubs his hands across his chest). She almost took her bra off. I feel scared for the future of (their relationship).”
DJ Spark Madden: “I was playing a show in Denver and it started pouring rain, and everybody went nuts. I was outside on the patio, everybody went nuts, and just kept dancing, hundreds and hundreds of people. Oh, I was under this big awning,” he said. “But the crowd, yeah, they were loving it. It was in downtown Denver. I think that place is gone now.”
DJ Fidel Castro: “There was a gentleman from Atlanta who heard me (playing at a club in New Mexico), and he was like…‘I would love for you to come to Atlanta one time.’ This has to be about eight years ago. I was young. (At that age) Everybody wants to become big. I don’t wanna be in it and be comfortable. I was like, ‘Okay, I should. Why not. It’s an experience.’
So I went to Atlanta to play a club that was, at that time, it was called Club Dream. The club had to be 99 percent African American, with the other 1 percent, I don’t know, it could have been like, Hispanic or white. I don’t know, cause all I saw was the African American community.
In a way, I guess it was scary, because I’m a hip-hop DJ, and if you’re going from Farmington or Durango to an all African-American crowd, you’re just like, ‘Is my music gonna actually gonna translate?’
So, I’m just like, I’ll just do what (I) do in a place here, and play what I play here. But one of the DJs at the time (at Club Dreams), he’s like, ‘You have a hoodie on you?’ I didn’t – it was already hot in there – and the DJ is like, ‘Here’s my hoodie. Wear my hoodie.’
Now, you gotta realize that the Atlanta humidity – especially for the first time – hitting that humidity is just…it was the worst you could imagine. Especially if you’re coming from Durango.
So I put the hoodie up (over my head) and just start playing. I’m sweating everywhere, just dripping, and he says, ‘The reason why I told you to wear the hoodie… it’s because I don’t want them to look at you and say you’re not one of us and not be accepted.’
So I’m playing that way for two hours, and at that point, I’ve got the crowd going, so I took off my hoodie, and I kid you not, it was like hearing a pin drop. You could have heard the bing of it hitting the floor. Yeah, and everybody just looked at me, surprised, and I just kept on going in. At that moment, I knew I had reached a different stage (in my career).”