Full Interview with DJ @Daisha_Hunter Dai*Light

DJ Dai*Light is a Harrisburg, Pennsylvania native, now living in Tokyo, Japan evolved with eating, “Engrish” and entertainment, Meet Daisha Hunter.

DentRadio: Thank you for coming today!

Daisha: Thank you for having me!

DR: I had such a blast last weekend seeing you and Kojoe perform your set at Tokyo Tower.  What’s that like for you to be going from DJing in the club or at events like Dr. Sketchy’s at the Pink Cow to being a DJ for a performing artist like Kojoe?

Daisha: Its really different, Djing is just my hobby so its all really new to me. I go from Djing regular events to club events to the burlesque events which are really fun, but Djing for performing artists, its a lot of work because there is a lot of multitasking. You have to make sure the songs are together, make sure your hyping on the microphone and interacting with the artist, its a lot going on. Shout out to all the Dj’s that really do that because its always a lot going on.

DR: What made you want to move to Japan in the first place and how long have you been living here?

Daisha: My first experience with Japanese culture was when I came out here to visit my father. My father was a Marine in Okinawa and I went to high school out there for a year, Kubasaki High School. (Shout out to Kubasaki! The Kubasaki Dragons!) I went out there then I came back home and I had taken Japanese lessons in school and I picked up on Hiragana and Katakana really fast, so I liked the language but back in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania we didn’t have Japanese in high school, so I wanted to go to a University with Japanese. I chose Temple University. I minored in Japanese at Temple, I studied abroad in Tokyo for a year and I loved it. I said I was going to come back after I graduated, so about a year, two and a half years later, I’m back.

DR: Going from a background  of American hip hop to Japanese hip hop scene how was that transition? What differences and similarities have you seen?

Daisha: The transition? Well, there’s really no transition for me because I have yet to get into Japanese Hip-Hop. I’m still really big on American Hip-Hop and try to keep up with whats going on, which isn’t a lot if we’re talking about mainstream. But underground, there’s so much information and so much music always coming to me in my inbox. Of course you always send me great music from Atlanta, I don’t really have time to keep up with Japanese artists. Similarities? Well, there is a lot of copying in Japanese Hip-Hop. I’m waiting for them to make it their own and make the culture their own and apply that out here but underground wise we have a lot of great new artists like Kojoe and Ohga. I’m just looking forward to this generation of the new pioneers who are going to make Japanese Hip-Hop enjoyable worldwide regardless of a language barrier.

DR: One big thing I have noticed out here in Japan is at clubs and events, the audience faces the Dj Booth. Now as a Dj is that at all intimidating for you or do you have fun with their full attention?

Daisha: When I first noticed that, I thought it was hilarious. I’m a dancer and when I go to the clubs I like to dance and get it in, so looking at the crowd and not having one person dancing with you, like, most Japanese people don’t dance together or try to dance with you anyway. Its like a concert, where everyone’s full attention is on you whereas at home, you base your skills upon how the crowd reacts to the music meaning are people dancing and not looking at you. Where as out here its like a show. Its not really intimidating, its cool.

DR: I know that you DJ hip hop when you’re working with Kojoe but that your real passion as a DJ is Baltimore Club.  How did you get into Baltimore club  and what appeals you to that genre?

Daisha: I love Baltimore club music. I’m from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania and we have no urban radio stations and they strategically keep us out of range from anything related to our own culture. I think i was first exposed to it when i went to D.C. and started listening to stations like WPCG and KISS, and listening to them and i remember the peculator and other short songs that they would play. It wasn’t until my last year of high school that I really started to research what it was and i found music liberated which was a Baltimore club music store and I literally ordered my first CD and first piece of vinyl and I did not have a record player but I had to have Tim Tree’s “Bank Roll”. If your from Baltimore, and when your in the club, everybody knows that record. I ordered that record and I figured I could just play it on my grandmother’s record player, then I ordered K-Swiff’s “Club Queen” Volume 6, and Rest in Peace K-Swiff. That was the first set of music that I received. I started to playing it in college when I went to Temple University in Philadelphia. They were not playing Baltimore club in Philly. Most college students hated it unless you were from Baltimore or Jersey,  so I took it to every party trying to get them to play it people started peculating. Later me and my friends would go to Baltimore and just started doing what they did! It really started from that. I’ve always wanted to meet K-Swiff to let her know how much of an influence she was to me, she passed away about two years ago so rest in peace again to her. Shout out to all the Baltimore Club Dj’s who are holding it down and keeping it live.

For more about Daisha aka DJ Dai*Light check out http://www.DaiTime.com and follow her on twitter! @DAISHA_HUNTER

Check out her B*more club mix for #DENTradio here!

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3 Responses to Full Interview with DJ @Daisha_Hunter Dai*Light

  1. Great article! Any music that makes you move faster than hip-hop is liberating. It’s all house and Daisha is a great DJ! Thanks for sharing!

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