305DJS: How did you get hooked-up with 99 Jamz?
DJ IRIE: At first I was just an intern but I was doing a radio show at my college FIU (Florida International University). I wanted to take it to that next level and get some experience doing commercial radio. So I did the internship at 99 Jamz, doing the Al B. Silk show, then one night I was DJing and Silk came through at the time. I was using my real name so he saw me and was like, "You DJ? You got to be on my show" and they gave me my shot.
305DJS: I see you started doing some mixtapes, is that something you intend on doing consistently?
DJ IRIE: I was never really into the mixtape game. My whole thing is my live performance. The person who really got me into mixtapes was Shaq. He came into town, called me in for a meeting and was like, "Yo, we gonna start doing these mixtapes dog" and I was like, "Alright let’s go."
305DJS: How does your style differ from other DJ’s?
DJ IRIE: I’m one of the most versatile DJ’s out there periods. I can play any party or any crowd.
305DJS: From someone’s who’s seen Khaled since his early days, how does it feel to see him progress into doing an album and earning great success?
DJ IRIE: Nothing feels better than that because Khaled’s album is a big thing for all DJ’s, not just Miami DJ’s. The more success he gets with the album, the more doors will open.
305DJS: What’s the current top five records in your playlist?
DJ IRIE: Yung Joc – Its Goin Down, T.I.- Why You Wanna, Rick Ross – Hustlin (Remix), DJ Khaled – Born-N-Raised, DJ Khaled – Holla At Me
305DJS: What do you think we need to do here in Miami to keep the movement alive?
DJ IRIE: It’s so simple, it’s not even funny. Just keep doing what we’re doing. If we putting out good music, the world will recognize it. Hit records can’t be ignored but we have to keep the quality good, its always quality over quantity.
305DJS: How did you become the DJ for the Miami Heat?
DJ IRIE: When they moved the team to the American Airlines Arena the first thing they wanted to do was switch up the entertainment. Some ideas were being passed around and getting a DJ came up, mind you, at this time no other team had a DJ. I was playing at Level nightclub and one of the guys on the committee named Josh used to come every Saturday night. He liked my show and had me in mind for the job but had a hard time getting in contact with me. I did a party for a guy named Steve who was coach, Pat Riley’s, assistant. One day he over heard Josh saying he couldn’t get in contact with me and he wanted me for the DJ job. So they finally got in touch with me and I actually turned down the offer a couple of times but something in the last conversation struck me. I was really only supposed to stay for about 3 months but I ended up staying for the rest of the season. Then the fan’s started emailing and sending letters about how they loved the DJ and the energy and that turned into a 3-year contract and I’m still here.
305DJS: What’s the difference between getting ready for a show compared to getting ready for a Heat game?
DJ IRIE: It’s a lot different, it’s like night and day. When I go into a show for 99 Jamz, I’m focusing on a great mix, making sure I get that new hot record in or what ever new artists I’m trying to break and keep those listeners’ ears. The game is more about getting a reaction out of the people, making them scream or put there hands up and cheer because in the arena you already have their ears.
305DJS: From your experience what should an up-an-coming DJ know?
DJ IRIE: Never do it for the big car. You’ll never be successful that way. You have to want to be the best DJ and have a passion for this to where it’s no longer a job, its second nature.
305DJS: What can a new artist do to build relationships with DJ’s?
DJ IRIE: Show the DJ support and he will support you the same way. Its one thing to email a track for me to play at Mansion on Saturday and another to show up Saturday and support if I play the record or not.
305DJS: What’s next for DJ IRIE?
DJ IRIE: I got my album coming, a t-shirt line, mixtapes available at www.djirie.com/store