Taking giant strides in an industry dominated by male artist Mac Aworu Cherish Asikiya populary known as DJ Cherry has surpassed many expectations and expressed passion for the art of Disc Jockey. In this interview with DANIEL ABEL she speaks on the journey so far.
What motivated you to be a DJ?
My motivation to become a DJ started from a young age. I always feel very calm anytime I hear good music; the vibrations and lyrics always connects to what I feel at the moment and it has also explained life. I started understanding other people, the way music makes them happy, and then I decided to work towards becoming a DJ. I played the piano at my church and then started learning how to use a CD player to mix songs. At the time, I was not even up to 20 years old. I had mastered the mixer which was ‘axis nine’ at that time, before the upgraded mixers used in present day.
In a field dominated by men, how are you surviving?
Initially, it was not easy because at that time, it was considered a man’s job. Most people looked down on me because they felt I was trying to challenge them. However, I did not let all that discourage me. I went to radio stations and learnt new skills, practiced with international DJs online and also practiced and added my own skills so I could really make an impact and difference in the industry. However, things are better now as the world is more open to the idea of a female DJs. There are still challenges but because of my love for the occupation, I can handle the criticism and do better than what is expected of me. I enjoy being a disc jockey.
What challenges do you face as a female DJ, when you first started and now?
As a female DJ, when I started, it was very difficult because my body size brought a lot of criticisms. I had to change a lot about me just to fit in, my look, style etc. Many people looked down on me, even some DJs and facility owners, when I go for events, always have second thoughts and always ask if I was sure I could do the job. It almost discouraged me but I just had to prove myself. Now, it is better because people now request for female disc jockey.
What skills do you think DJs need to be successful?
Skills mostly depend on individuals. For me, I maintain a vibe, study and understand my environment to know what my audience wants. With a little bit of my own magic, the crowd eventually fall in love with me. All DJs have to do is follow the trend and keep upgrading .
How has your career journey been so far?
Before the pandemic, things were good in the area of growth and recognition of talent etc. For now, I am glad things are picking up again in entertainment. I will keep working hard until I get there.
How do you stay up to date with the latest music trends?
Technology has made it easy to follow trends and also upgrade. I follow many top artistes online. They always announce their upcoming songs and so on. Meanwhile, there are sites we subscribe to that notifies us any time a new song drops. I also do some personal research etc. Notably, the digital age has made it easy for me and all other DJs to stay up to date with the latest trends.
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