His real name is Jeremy and his moniker on stage is GemStarr. He started his DJ career in 2001 playing at venues such as DXO, O Bar and dbl O.
Currently performing three times a week on Wednesdays and weekends at Playhouse and being the resident DJ at Fenix Room and Vice, the 14-year seasoned showman has also been giving DJ-ing classes the last two years. His students are the generation of young upstarts in Singapore who want to break into the DJ club scene.
What is this newfangled DJ-ing thing that is getting more and more young Singaporeans hooked? What is a club DJ supposed to be anyway?
Here are 6 things you might have always wanted to ask a local DJ but didn't:
1. Is it true that anyone these days can be a DJ?
Yes, it is possible. With practice. And some experience. But this is a very subjective question. To be a DJ requires lots of experience and hard work.
The term "DJ" has to be earned, but most people have this misconception of 'I can mix, means I can DJ', but too bad it doesn't work this way.
You don't put the title Dr (Doctor) in front of your name if you are not one, do you?
A DJ is a person that has in depth knowledge with specific music genre and knows how to make people dance. Basically, a DJ's job is to make people happy and get them off their feet to dance even though they have a bad day at work.
Anyone can learn to be a DJ, but not anyone can be a DJ.
2. Is this why Paris Hilton is also a DJ?
She is a celebrity.
Heard a few of her mixes and I think they are terrible. DJs in Singapore would agree.
3. So what's the difference between Paris Hilton and David Guetta?
Paris Hilton is a celebrity, whether she deejays or not (don't know if she really does), but it doesn't really matter as she already has her "celebrity status" so she has an established fan base.
David Guetta, not only deejays but produces at the same time. He has paid his dues. Well at least you can call him a DJ.
4. Why do so many young Singaporeans want to be a DJ these days?
Perhaps its the influence of the music festivals all over the globe. But young people pick up this skill for several reasons:
1. Some do it as a hobby/ past-time
2. Some do it for the desire to get recognised
3. Some do it for the fame and money
After all, these young and aspiring people look up to big acts like Hardwell and David Guetta as inspiration.
5. How do you feel when some people say DJs are not real musicians?
Maybe first of all, I won't say DJs are actually musicians (with the exception of producer DJs). I would say DJs are entertainers, just like an artiste, they will be able to deliver good entertainment value to audiences.
6. You've taught hundreds of younger folks how to DJ. Are you like a mentor DJ to other younger DJs who want to break into the scene?
Well, I'd say most of my younger students do come to my performances and most of them ask me this question: "How to be like you?"
I won't say that I am like a mentor to the younger DJs but I guide them as long as they are willing to learn and listen.
As the saying goes, mixing in your bedroom is different from a live performace, anyone can be a DJ but not everyone can DJ.
GemStarr has produced a few successful DJs: Vxlerie, Sabrina, ET, Genji5ive. GemStarr also currently runs a DJ school situated in Orchard. Would you like to learn to DJ too? Find out more at Ministry Of DJs
*This is a sponsored article.