DJ Dhundee: Music Maverick

DJ Dhundee is a talented DJ.  He wears many hats: an educator, podcast producer, promoter, and Creative Director.  He founded Sugarcuts Inc. for commercial composing and continues to break new ground.  FRONTRUNNER caught up with him this past month at another little shindig by our friends over at Coco & Pollock.

How do these roles feed off one another? Music is the underlying theme?

Music is definitely the underlying theme. The creation of music is fueled by inspiration—people, places, dreams… Becoming the creative director for Sugarcuts Inc. was a natural progression.  I understand the sound and the vision of my company.   You meet lots of people out when you’re performing and as time goes on your list of contacts grows.  I make sure to only send out a blast when I’ve completed a project that I find significant.

What are you working on right now?  What types of tones and music are interesting to you?  You are known for mixing and bending genres.

I’m currently working on a new EP. This project is strictly for the dance floor.  At the moment, I’m listening to all types of dance music.  Output has been my go-to spot for the past few months.

Tell me about your production company Sugarcuts Inc.

Sugarcuts Inc. produces music for TV, film, video games and multimedia. It also operates as a small label and event producer.

How do you know when you want to make a remix of a song versus sampling a piece for an original?  Do you know, “oh, this is good for a remix” and “this is good for a compilation”?  What do you like to listen for or listen to in each of these processes?

It just has to speak to me. I listen for the melody. I can either find someone else that it sounds like in my catalog of music or a track that fits the message of the song.

What is a typical weekend like for you when you are working a big event?

Pacing myself…. My gigs range from night clubs to corporate events to raves… Each gig has its own prep work. The main thing I do to stay on top of things is to make sure my music is organized and my laundry is fresh.

Tell me about B.E.A.T and Beatmakers and what your involvement in teaching means to you.

B.E.A.T. Stands for Bridging Education and Arts Together. Beatnyc.org is run by my good friend James Kim. He and I used to work for Viacom together.  Two and a half years ago, when I was teaching at East Side Community High School in the Lower East Side, James asked me to come up with a beat making program for his organization that hosted break dancing and beat boxing.

We decided to use iPads to teach the program because it’s the most efficient method.  I held workshops in Berlin and Singapore.  I am currently the Director for Beatmakers. We are looking to spread the knowledge and the art of music throughout the globe.

Who should Frontrunner profile next?

Aria Isadora, she’s an amazing photographer. www.ariaisadora.com

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