All photo credits:  John Coleman III


John Coleman III aka DJ LIL’ JOHN, is without question one of Chicago’s most well-respected DJs. From school gymnasiums to roller rinks, from nightclub residencies to nationally syndicated mix shows, millions of people have heard his “hands do the talking.”

John’s passion has always been in radio. He played on various college radio shows right after graduating high school, without ever enrolling in any classes! Soon after, he created his own national mix-show syndication, mailing his pre-recorded cassette mixes to radio stations across the Midwest. By the mid 90’s, he used the same tactics in Chicago, getting his mixes played on WHPK, WCRX, WJPC, WLUW, B-96, and WGCI. By 2001, the latter station became his radio “home” for eight years!!

In 2012, DJ Lil’ John found a new radio home, as an On-Air Personality for Crawford Broadcasting’s WSRB. You can hear him weekdays from 3-7pm (central standard time) on his highly-rated afternoon show “PrimeTime Radio.” You can also hear his mini-mixes Monday-Saturday in the 12pm & 5pm hours, and on “Club 1063”, Friday nights 9-11pm.

Outside of radio, DJ Lil’ John specializes in playing at corporate events, nightclubs, weddings, and concert hosting. Recent clients include BET®, Scion®, Apple®, Nike®, and numerous Chicagoland municipalities. Nationally, he is a member of The Core DJs (@coredjsworldwide), the world’s largest and most influential DJ union. He is available for travel both nationally and internationally.

GO BANG! Magazine: Chicago’s music scene has a rich history. How did your upbringing and the city’s soundscape influence your unique DJ style?

DJ Lil John: My upbringing was in the family home, and my dad, my mom, and her sister (my aunt) were all avid music lovers. My mom and aunt each had their own collection of 45 rpm records, writing their initials on the labels to identify ownership, and to identify their favorite side and the favorite song.

I think I was about 9 or 10 years old when they let me play their records for a family function, that’s when I first learned to play for a variety of ages, and how to read a crowd! Fast forward to my adult DJ years, and I’ve learned to “read” dance floors on the northside, southside, and westside of Chicagoland, the suburbs, and the world…

GO BANG! Magazine: You’ve spun for some of the biggest names in music. What’s the most unexpected or surprising guest request you’ve ever gotten?

DJ Lil John: Oh wow! I have PLENTY of those stories, LMAO!! But one that comes to mind was when “Chili” of the girl group TLC asked me to play some Chicago “footwork” music. I was a DJ at WGCI-FM at the time, and she was there doing an on-air interview with one of the hosts. She turned to me and made that request, and I straight up asked her, “you’re from Atlanta, what could YOU know about Chicago footwork music?” To my surprise, I played a couple of snippets, and she got up and started FOOTWORKING!!! We were ALL floored!! She eventually relinquished her secret: “Missy (Elliott)’s dancers are from Chicago, they showed us how to do it!”

GO BANG! Magazine: Beyond dropping beats, you’re a champion for Chicago’s youth. Tell us about an initiative you’re particularly passionate about and why it matters.

DJ Lil John: I am all about the youth of Chicago in so many ways. Musically, I like to learn from them what role music plays in their lives, how it influences them daily, and the “why-behind-the-what” on their choice of artists.

But, when it comes to our beloved House music, it is unfamiliar territory to them. This is why several of my peers, including myself, have taken the initiative to introduce this genre of music to our youth, just as we were influenced by the music that our parents played in our homes growing up. The hope is that they like the music that they hear, embrace the genre, influence their peers, and carry the torch of the House music sound and culture for generations to come.

A couple of my peers have taken this initiative even further, with DJ classes for youth and adults alike. Many of my fellow DJs who are fortunate enough to play at school dances, take a chance on introducing House music (especially “footwork” music) to the kids! Being a radio announcer and DJ mixer, I am in a unique and influential position when it comes to the younger listening audience. As my peers tune in to my show, those that have children are tuned in as well. All it takes is the parental confession that “I know the guy on the radio”, and that becomes the first line of connection with the young listener. When the kids hear the music in my mixes, which are usually familiar songs that their parents played in their homes, that gets their attention. If the parent manages to communicate with me, while I’m on the radio that they are tuned in, and I “shout out” the family members by name, I’ve now instantly gained new young listeners ☺️

GO BANG! Magazine: The dance floor is a melting pot of energy. How do you read the crowd and curate a set that keeps them moving all night long?

DJ Lil John: I like to arrive an hour early to a venue I’ve never played at before, to observe what the DJ before me is playing, and how it resonates with the audience. I am looking for the patrons that AREN’T dancing or engaging with what’s being played, yet they may be bobbing their heads in their seats – we call that “chair dancing” LOL! So, when I begin to play, I am in search of what might get those “chair dancers” to the dance floor, usually by reaching for something popular. This tactic almost always does the trick, and once I’ve got ’em out of their seats, I curate a musical mix that makes it hard for them to sit back down! And because my musical library is so vast, I have selections that appease the variety of ethnicities that patronize the venues I play in, Chicagoland and worldwide.

GO BANG! Magazine: “Vinyl vs. Digital”: Is there a place for both in today’s DJ world? What are the pros and cons of each for you?

DJ Lil John: Well, it appears vinyl records are making a comeback in a big way, at least here in the USA. Honestly, it never REALLY went away in Chicagoland. There are still vinyl record shops (Gramaphone Records, K-Starke, etc.) that never closed their doors, and there are countless diehard DJs here in the city that never stopped patronizing these businesses. I still own every record I’ve ever purchased (I haven’t sold anything), and I still have my pair of Technics SL-1200 turntables. However, I am using my Pioneer XDJ-XZ to play my digital music files, and the turntables are connected to it, to play my vinyl records. There are various clubs in Chicago and overseas that have a similar setup… But I have NO intentions of carrying actual record crates on a plane and/or through foreign Customs, those days are OVER!! Flash drives fly with ME!!

GO BANG! Magazine: Chicago House music has a global influence. Have you experienced any interesting cultural exchanges through your music, perhaps with international audiences?

DJ Lil John: More often than not, when I travel to DJ internationally, just the mention of being a Chicago DJ is one hell of a conversation piece, LOL!! These conversations can often go on for hours, as people attempt to imagine life in the home of Michael Jordan or the home of House music.

The most intriguing part of these interactions is that there are NO color barriers, NO signs of racism, NO discernment about gender preference or ethnic culture. The only “disconnect” if any, is their interpretation of House music versus what I came to play. But fortunately, with my diverse collection of House music, I am usually able to move their dance floors effectively and unite the House music culture accordingly!

GO BANG! Magazine: What’s your take on the evolution of DJ technology? How have these advancements impacted the way you perform?

DJ Lil John: Funny you should ask! I was such a diehard vinyl record fan that I never fully transitioned to CDs, I stayed with my turntables. It got so bad to the point that I would be playing at a local club on an R&B/Hip-Hop night, and a patron would ask me to play “track 12” from a certain artist’s album – they didn’t even know the name of the song! If I had said album, I would start counting from one on the A-side, until I got to the twelfth track on the B-side!!

Fortunately, before long, some guys invented the Serato Studio DJ software, allowing me to keep my turntables, while controlling those music tracks, I imported from the CDs or digital files I received from the record labels. As far as I am concerned, Serato DJ had successfully reinvented the wheel, LOL!

Today there are other brands that do the same thing, but then Serato reinvented the wheel AGAIN! They added a feature called “Stems” which lets you audibly break down virtually ANY song into acapella, instrumental, or drums only, all on the fly!! But, I believe that the Pioneer DJ company has created the global game-changer, when they produced DJ equipment that will let you play your digital music files straight from a flash drive or portable hard drive! As long as the venue has this type of DJ equipment, there’s no need to carry your laptop with the music on it or any other equipment, except your headphones and flash drives/hard drives! Talk about breezing through Customs, LOL!

VIDEO COURTESY OF: Youtube “Everything House Music & More” podcast

GO BANG! Magazine: Collaboration is key in music. Who are some Chicago artists (past or present) you’d love to work with on a project?

DJ Lil John: Currently, I’d love to collaborate with my DJ brother Mike Dunn. We started the House music mix-show “Club 1063” back in April 2012, and it’s still going stronger than ever every Friday night! We’ve talked about collaborating in the studio in the near future, and it will happen once we synchronize our watches/schedules! Others include vocalists Sheree Hicks, Joyce Hurley, Carla Prather, and a couple others that are relatively unknown at this point…

GO BANG! Magazine: Looking ahead, what are your hopes for the future of Chicago’s vibrant music scene?

DJ Lil John: My BIGGEST hope is that my peers can refrain from the vast negativity in their social media posts – the WORLD is watching as our DJs, producers, and passionate patrons debate negatively amongst themselves about various topics within the Chicago House music community. If we/they can resolve this issue, then just maybe we can find solutions and resolutions on the very subjects that are debated about. Also, I am truly hoping that the younger DJs and patrons that are slowly but surely carrying the culture forward, I hope that they are not affected by the same plight of social media bickering that my generation is currently portraying.

GO BANG! Magazine: Any “up-and-coming” Chicago DJs you think deserve a shout-out and why?

DJ Lil John: ABSOLUTELY! Our rising star youth DJs: Babydoll & Syd, Nikki, Akila, Double-8, Marcellus, M-Dok and my main man J-Star! They’re each under 25 years of age (I think), and actively keeping House music alive amongst their peers and ours!!

GO BANG! Magazine: Well, THANK YOU John! You have officially been BANGED! GO BANG BRO!!!


Contact him directly at 312.451.4804, email,, and on social media platforms @djliljohnusa.

◦ WSRB 106.3FM – Chicago/Hammond
◦ Social : @djliljohnusa

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG!

All Photo Credits: Eric Williams

Born and raised in Chicago through two Belizean parents, Steve’s musical journey started at birth through osmosis. His journey marks are with vinyl, instruments, and action. His humble musical beginnings included guitar and piano lessons, as well as choirs until the Hot Mix 5 and Prince came into his life. Striving to do both, produce & DJ, he started his professional DJ career spinning in Army base clubs on and off post while serving. He also played guitar, bass, keys, and drums in many bands during his military career until he came back to Chicago.

In the fall of 1993, Steve landed a mix show jock position on Chicago’s #1 station, WGCI. By mixing smooth blends of House, Old School, Hip Hop, R&B and Reggae, Steve quickly became a household name. Since then, he has gone on to mixing for syndicated powerhouse SuperRadio, Tom Joyner, Doug Banks, doing production and remixes for Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley, Joe Smooth, DJ Kool, Janet Jackson, Erick Sermon, Tyrese, George Clinton, and Faith Evans.

During this time, he continued honing his craft producing which led to the meeting of Michele and Jaman Laws (son and daughter of Ronnie Laws). The trio produced “Brio As In Rio”, a jazzy-funky grown-up dance album. Through this piece and others, he started his record label, MMP Records, through another Chicago DJ Raphael, by selling his instrumental downtempo R&B tracks on CD for local dancers. Since then, he has produced U.K. soul siren Julie Dexter’s full-length album, “New Again” on Ketch-A-Vibe Records, released the “Bop Padow” EP on Unified Records, “Happy Place” EP on House4Life Records and the Julie Dexter “Make You Dance” EP with Vic Lavender’s Sophisticado Records.

It wasn’t until he released “Tribe Deep” on Void Digital Music, it was suggested that being a label instead of a DJ/producer/remix artist would be more lucrative. As a result, “Belizian Voodoo Priest” EP was released 2012. He has gone on to make countless releases on MMP Records, Shelf Life Music, T’s Box Records (Terry Hunter), Open Bar Music (Oscar P), Catch 22 (DJ Disciple) and Miggedy Entertainment. He also is a syndicated mix show DJ through the Digimix DJs @

GO BANG! Magazine: Let’s first start, if you don’t mind, by telling our readers the origin of the name Steve Miggedy Maestro, as well as some of the other monikers you go by, including Belizian Voodoo Priest, Morttimer Snerd III, The Beat-Trayers, and Sir Sound Bender.

Steve Miggedy Maestro: I will tell you the origin of my stage name. Prior to “Miggedy”, my DJ name was G.I. Jack. I was in the Army from ’86 -’91 so because I played House, it made sense. Around ’92, I was hired by DJ Fink to spin at the LaSalle Club. He asked me what my handle was, and I knew G.I. Jack wasn’t going to fly, so I changed it to Steve Maestro on the spot. The “Miggedy” part came courtesy of Rick Party once I got on WGCI in late ’93. When he used to introduce my name on Club 107.5, he would say “Steve Miggedy-Miggedy-Miggedy-Miggedy Maestro” just to throw some flavor and it stuck.

I came up Morttimer, Belizian Voodoo Priest, Sir Soundbender and The Beat-Trayers as production aliases for two reasons:

1.) I have so many styles, people not in the know will get confused. So, I wanted to put Morttimer in the Jackie House zone, Belizian Voodoo Priest for Afro, Sir Soundbender for Tech House, and The Beat-Trayers as a combo of all four. I wanted Steve to sing more. That’s discipline I lack, but I’m working on it.

2) People tend to put you in a box. They assume because I excel in one area, that I won’t be as good in anything else. Taking a page from the book of Prince, it put a sense of mystery about who these entities are and where are they from. Some people didn’t put two and two together, until they asked. Marketing.

GO BANG! Magazine: What was your child life like, growing up in Chicago with two Belizean parents, and how has your culture been infused in you and your creativity?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: I grew up in two different worlds. Belizean in the home, African / American outside. I got made fun of because I spoke the Queen’s English. Being short and dark, I was quiet until the music came on. I was born an art child. Wasn’t into sports or nothin’, just music and art. I went after my dad’s records as a baby, scratching them with my fingers, getting my butt beat and going right back to them. My parents, uncles, aunts, and older cousins had various music from everywhere, but mostly Calypso, Reggae, Rocker’s music, Funk, Jazz and Soul/R&B/Disco. My dad taught me everything he knew about music, records, and equipment. I decided that was going to be the rest of my life.

GO BANG! Magazine: Please describe how and when you discovered that you had an interest and talent in the arts, as well as when you KNEW that you wanted to pursue music professionally.

Steve Miggedy Maestro: I knew it when I came out the chute! Music was ALL I wanted to do. I also drew a lot, doing album cover art. I remember I was five years old running tunes at my grandma’s family gatherings, and she put five dollars in my pocket and said, “Now you’re a businessman.” That stuck with me!

My parents put me in guitar lessons at seven and piano at 10. I figured out the bass and drums in high school, listening to Prince. Meanwhile, “The Hot Mix 5” came into my life and that became my obsession. Buying music and figuring out how to make my own.

GO BANG! Magazine: You are now a worldwide known producer and DJ, but you had humble beginnings. Please describe some of the pivotal points in your life, or milestones in your life, that were game changing to your life, and led up to you being who you are today.

Steve Miggedy Maestro: It’s too many moments to list. But if I could pick one, it would be when I got hired at WGCI. So, up until then, I had been blending since I was 11. I was more than ready.

I remember my guy Ron Troupe told me about a contest to be the new DJ. I had been cheated out of so many contests, I wasn’t going to enter. My co-workers (I used to work at Coconuts record store back in the day) were like “Naw boy, go do that! You cold!” (I used to sell mixtapes in the store). I remember I had a bogus pager my guy sold me and I couldn’t figure out the voicemail. I kept getting these voicemails, but I cracked it finally. It was Elroy Smith, the Program Director, asking if I wanted a job. That call changed my life and put me on the path I sought to be on.

GO BANG! Magazine: You’ve worked with some of the powerhouse people in radio, including Tom Joyner, the late Doug Banks and the late and legendary Herb Kent. In the music industry, you’ve provided your production and remixing skills to Steve “Silk” Hurley, Joe Smooth, Janet Jackson, George Clinton, and many other notable talents. Can you please describe to our readers, what having opportunities like that have meant to you?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: It meant I was ready for greatness. I had been DJ’ing, a musician, producer, writer and sound engineer my whole life. It was just a matter of meeting the right people at the right time. And in truth, I had been manifesting it all since I was young. If I did talk, that’s all I talked about.

GO BANG! Magazine: In addition to being a successful DJ, you are also a multi-instrumentalist and the record label owner of MMP Records. You play guitar, bass, keys, and drums. How has being a musician influenced you as a DJ and vice versa?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: It’s all the same language. But, being a producer and a DJ are two different personalities. DJs have the edge of knowing what’s going to make the floor move more than a producer. Being a musician, I know the keys and sounds and can make things happen, quicker than a DJ. Triple threat!

GO BANG! Magazine: How would you describe your sound and the music that you create and how would you describe your DJ’ing style?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: My sound is clean, full, and bottom-heavy…both my oth DJ’ing and production work. I like to go with acoustic sounds, but with more 2022 bass on it. It makes a difference in the speakers, with the technology they have out now.

GO BANG! Magazine: You and your wife, Lady Laronda Maestro, are a beloved couple, here in Chicago and around the world, I’m sure. Lady Laronda is well-known and admired because of several reasons, including her beauty, inside and out, her healthy transformation, and the artsy and creative makeup and decorations she adorns her face with. How did you two meet, how would you describe Lady Laronda to someone that never met her, and how do you keep the love so fresh in your relationship?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: We met during both of our club phases. But we “MET MET” December 2009 at the Smart Bar. Brother Paul Johnson (R.I.P.) had gone through his second accident, so a group of people decided to have a benefit for him there. Lady was one of the hosts. We met in the DJ booth and sparks started flying.

As far as describing her, she loves to dance, cook, host and she LOVES being with ME (LOL!)

As far as keeping it fresh, I don’t know. It just does. We understand each other’s madness and there’s no jealousy between us as we get the same amount of attention when we’re outside; both of us are secure in our entities. We also keep everyone OUT of our relationship, and we stay out of everyone else’s.

GO BANG! Magazine: Who inspires you, in business, in music and in life?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: My Creator inspires everything.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being who you are and having the legendary musical history that you have, you have remained humble, down to earth, and kind. Many in the industry, at your level, have went “Hollywood”, if you know what I mean. How have you managed to remain level-headed and why is that important to you?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: I already had the big head early. I lost two important relationships because of it, so that’s how I humbled out. As I get older, I would see “Hollywood” come back and hinder or destroy careers, so I figured I need to be cool. Plus, NOBODY likes working with an arrogant artist. The one person you treat like dirt may be connected to the person you’ve been trying to get at.

GO BANG! Magazine: Is there any artist, DJ, or musical band (living or deceased) that you would LOVE to play or work with that you haven’t thus far?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: Prince and Michael Jackson.

GO BANG! Magazine: Chicago is the Mecca of House music, as well as it’s origins. Over the years, Chicago’s southside House community has had its ups and downs, as well documented on social media. How would you describe the House community here, in comparison to other states or countries, regarding community unity, competing DJs, and radio support of House music?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: All around the world, same song. Community and DJs. That’s just how people are. The people here are big on familiar music, spots, and people. But I’m sure it’s like that everywhere that there’s neighborhoods, schools, labor, etc.

Radio support. Do we need it at this point? I remember when radio was king. Not so much when you got YouTube, satellite radio and sites like TIDAL.

I selfishly like it underground the way it is, new or old music. If there are joints that make it commercial, bravo to them, get the bag. But the euphoria of hitting a classic or a new hot joint is why us DJs do what we do.

GO BANG! Magazine: The future of House music is secure. There are new up and coming DJs out there, like Chicago’s own J Star, and mainstream recording artists are putting their hats in the ring, like Drake and Beyonce. What is your outlook on the future of House music, as a genre and as a community, what do you think of the new up and coming DJs, and lastly, what is your opinion on Drake and Beyonce’s new music, which they are categorize as House music influenced?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: I don’t know about the future because were still trying to figure the past out lol! The problem is House is a culture AND a genre. There are people who still live in the culture that have not accepted House as a genre. To them, House left Chicago and became something else. That was the spilt in the 90s (Southside vs. northside). Then there are people that have went with the new sounds and did very well around the world, but it all still falls under the House umbrella.

The future of the community depends on the individuals participating in it. That’s why the youth are getting more into it now. I love the young DJs, but I hold everyone to the same standards… selections and skillset.

Drake and Beyonce. The thing that makes this unique is social media. Your opinion can be instant and global. So, it’s interesting to see the older folks trash it or embrace it. From a music trendsetter/label point of view, it’s great for the culture because it elongates our existence.

The vibration of music needs to change because so many of our young drill stars are getting smoked in broad daylight or OD-ing. Drill is the music that is the background to those demons. There’s no joy in it. House music (the genre) was made with JOY!

So, the fact that two of the biggest stars on the planet want to even go in that direction (because they personally never said it was House), I’m all for it because it brings it into the kids’ consciousness who never had House in their whole life! It brings it into the conversation to people who don’t know what House is. Older people had complained about House not reaching the youth; welp, here ya go! The fact that the world is TALKING about House again makes me happy.

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, is there anything that you are currently working on or want to tell our international reading audience to be on the lookout for?

Steve Miggedy Maestro: Every Saturday I’m on live from the studio from 11a-1p CST at

Every 4th Monday(if you’re in Chicago), I’m the resident at The Family Den, 8940 S. Stony Island in Chicago!

Check my social media because stuff is added everyday!
Tiktok: https://www.tiktok/morttimersnerdiii


Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.

Que Wright, born in Chicago, IL, found his love for poetry attending Gwendolyn Brooks Junior High and it continued in high school, while on the verge of failing Junior year English at Thornton Township High School. The poetry unit saved his semester and grades when his teacher, Ms. Milsap, allowed him to perform his poetry for extra credit.

Enrolling in honors Speech, the following semester gave him the confidence to keep writing and keep performing. Que would go on to attend an HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities), Bowie State University in Maryland, obtaining his Bachelors of Science degree in Communications Broadcast Journalism. He also holds a Masters in Secondary Education from GCU.

Que currently teaches Creative Writing at Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School and is an award winning DJ/Radio Personality on Dash Radio, based out of Los Angeles on the “Big Heff Radio Show.” It’s nationally syndicated in over 23 markets.
Recently, Que Wright published his first book “Eclectic Dreams” on March 25, 2021 under the Absolute Author Publishing House. It is currently available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

GO BANG! Magazine: Congratulations! You published your first book of poetry “Eclectic Dreams.” Please tell our readers all about your book and what inspired you to write it.

Que Wright: My book “Eclectic Dreams” was inspired by everyday life. I consider it a poetic memoir.

GO BANG! Magazine: When did you realize that you had a gift for writing poetry?

Que Wright: I realized my gift for writing poetry years ago when I was still in high school. I started performing my poetry in my high school English class for extra credit.

GO BANG! Magazine: What is it about poetry that ignites a fire in you?

Que Wright: It allows me to write exactly how I feel and describe my inner thoughts in so many ways.

GO BANG! Magazine: How would you describe your poetry to someone that may not be familiar with you?

Que Wright: My poetry is abstract realism.

GO BANG! Magazine: Who are some of the poets, past and present, that inspire and/or motivate you?

Que Wright: Some of the poets that inspire past and present would have to be R.H. Sin, Rupi Kaur, Nikki Giovanni, Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Tupac, Jhene Aiko and more.

GO BANG! Magazine: Some people categorize poetry and spoken word as the same. Others say that there is a definite difference. How would you describe the two and are you a spoken word artist?

Que Wright: I think the act of performing poetry is spoken word. I would not consider myself a spoken word artist, just an artist. I think poetry is my safe space to design culture, however I see fit.

GO BANG! Magazine: In addition to being a published author, you’re also an award winning DJ/Radio Personality. Please tell our readers about your DJ career.

Que Wright: I have been a DJ for over 10 years. I have been on one of the best syndicated Hip Hop shows on Dash Radio, based in Los Angeles the “Midwest Monsters Radio Show” and I have been a DJ on the Big Heff Radio show. I also made my national Radio debut in 2018 on The “Sway In The Morning Show” on Sirius XM as a guest mixer.

GO BANG! Magazine: Please describe your role as a Radio Personality on Dash Radio.

Que Wright: I interview artist and help “indy” artist have a voice on my new wave artist segment.

GO BANG! Magazine: Obviously education is important to you. You attended an HBCU where you earned your Bachelors of Science degree and then went on to GCU and earned a Master’s degree. How do you describe your passion for education and why was it important for you to attend an HBCU?

Que Wright: Attending an HBCU was one of the most important decisions I made in my life. Bowie State University in Maryland is one of the best colleges and places. I was able to attend and obtain my bachelors. I would recommend an HBCU to any young Black person on their educational journey to attend.

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, the COVID-19 pandemic has caught the world off guard. How are you dealing with it?

Que Wright: I’m just trying to stay healthy and keep my family safe by following mask mandates and just staying home and not putting people at risk.

You can purchase Quentin Wright’s book of poetry “Eclectic Dreams” on Amazon

Follow Que Wright on social media at: @QWrights and @DJQueEleven


Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

“From Miss Gucci to Mizz MeMe to the infamous FoxXxy!”











GO BANG! Magazine: When did you first get that spark in you to want to learn to DJ?

Meme Hughes: I first got that spark back in 2008. I was meeting so many people at the time. I was just hosting, throwing and promoting parties and I tried it a couple of times and was discouraged. Years later, it fell on me as I was doing my show because some of my guest DJs did not want to play my intermission music, so I was forced to play my own to keep the show in its format. Once I started doing a show on CYBERJAMZ in May 2010, I pretty much started then.

GO BANG! Magazine: What was it about the House scene that made you want to be a part of it as a young teenager?

Meme Hughes: It was the music and the people. To this day, throwing events and being a part of other events, I love to see people dance and have a good time.

GO BANG! Magazine: You and I grew up in the same South Shore neighborhood in Chicago and know many of the same people. DJ Steve Poindexter and John Hunt formed Gucci Promotions and you were a part of it, as Ms. Gucci. This was your foundation and beginning in the Entertainment industry. How did this time in your life influence the woman that you are today?

Meme Hughes: It brought me joy. I learned so much from them and I took that knowledge with my own twist and made it something different and great from a woman’s point of view. Watching them, it just seemed like things flowed because even though they had people they looked up to and learned from, most things for them came naturally from using their own ideas and moving in their own way and I am like that. I have taught myself most things from doing research and reading to experiencing blessed ideas. I say blessed ideas because they come out of nowhere and I just do it.

GO BANG! Magazine: Gucci Promotions was the foundation for several people, who later became great DJs of today. Is there anything that you would like to say to Steve Poindexter and John Hunt that you can share here with our readers?

Meme Hughes: I would like to say thank you and I love you guys forever! You were a part of my youth and didn’t realize how much you taught me and raised me to be the lady that I am today.

Thank you John Hunt!
Thank you Steve Poindexter!

GO BANG! Magazine: You’ve had the opportunity to share the turntable stage with several prominent DJs over the years. Is there any DJ or DJs in particular that you want to DJ with or any events/venues that you’d love to spin at?

Meme Hughes:OMG YES! Everybody knows how much I Love Louie Vega! I would love to open up for him and it doesn’t matter where it is. To open up for him would be epically incredible! Is that even a word? LOL

I have played locally in many places from north to south of Chicago, places that I’d never imagined that I would play at. It’s been a super incredible ride!

GO BANG! Magazine: Who are some of the DJs that you admire or who inspire you, past and/or present?

Meme Hughes:I was crazy about Frankie Knuckles. He did parties for Gucci Promotions but I first heard him when I was 14 at the Power Plant. I got in twice, but the third time they got me at the door. I was not old enough to get in at that time, but I did get that club experience at an early age. I like Ron Hardy too. His energy was atomic! I was around Pharris Thomas a lot. He was amazing. Watching Terry Hunter and Gene Hunt grow… these were the young men that I used to watch when I was younger, even though I am older than them. The Fantastic Four (Celeste Alexander, Khrisse Henderson, Kenya Lenoir) SheJays back then, let young women know that they too can play music too, just as well as the fellas.

I taught myself how to play and I am still learning. The learning never stops with all the different equipment that is used these days. It’s never ending education.

GO BANG! Magazine: Your talents range further than just being a DJ. You are also an entrepreneur, owning Mizz MeMe Management & Promotions. Please share with our readers more information about your business.

Meme Hughes: Mizz MeMe Management & Promotions was formed in 2007. I was hired to promote their events. I would go “old school” going to different parties and promote with flyers and small banners as well as host them. As time went on, I got into booking different talent for parties. This only lasted a few years, because I got my hands into other things.

GO BANG! Magazine: Then there’s even more talent flowing out of you, being an internet radio host. Tell us more about “The Deep Dis”, “Jus Muzik” and “”

Meme Hughes:I first started being a radio host with Chicago House Radio (Lloyd Dev) which was an “up and coming” radio station at the time (2009). This started me on my journey to radio. I always knew I was different and I do love radio. I was asked to do a show “The Deep Dis” with two other co-hosts, Noshaluv and Mike Hott. Every Tuesday night at 8pm, we would discuss and debate the music scene here in Chicago, along with a guest DJ playing music after our discussions. It was great and we did that for about a year. I woke up one day and said, “I want to do my own show.” I had so many ideas and I just put them into fruition.

January 18, 2010, Jus Muzik (The Show), was born. I would invite DJs from all over the city to interview and play a set. At the time, I was using a free LIVE streaming site called that became very popular at that time for many. I taught myself the ins and outs of audio/video. Jus Muzik W/MizzMeMe was the #1 Internet Radio Show for three years, reaching over 100,000 viewers in its first six months of airing.

As I was growing, I didn’t realize the growth. I was just enjoying doing it, as well as the music education that I was presenting with all genres of dance music. People from all over the world were tuning in faithfully every Monday night at 8pm. I had people telling me that I was part of their Monday night football regimen, with Mizz MeMe on one screen and football on the other.

Sammy Rock owner and founder of CYBERJAMZ was one of my many viewers who loved the show, reached out to me and asked me to bring Jus Muzik to CYBERJAMZ. I was so honored because at that time Sammy Rock and CYBERJAMZ was the hottest station moving with all dance music broadcasters. Everybody wanted to do CYBERJAMZ, so for me to get a prime-time slot on his station was everything. The way my show was formatted and the way the broadcasters were on CYBERJAMZ, I was a little timid about bringing my format to his station, so I switched it up and just played a 2 hour set. At that time my mixing was not the greatest but my programming made up for it. He pretty much let me be me and I taught myself to mix just by doing his show.

It was great to be encouraged so much and the east coast gave me much love and nickname “The FoxXx That RoxXx the BoxXx.” Right after, I changed my name to FoxXxy in credit of Greg Gray who was already a programmer and one of the first to do shows when the CYBERJAMZ station was growing. FoxXxy came from me doing my shows on CYBERJAMZ. I did two shows a week for years, Monday nights, producing my own show and Tuesday nights Jus Muzik on CYBERJAMZ.

GO BANG! Magazine: More recently, you launched “Jus Muzic Radio.” This accomplishment places you in a class by yourself, being one of the only African American women to own an internet radio station. Please tell us about the station and describe to our readers how that makes you feel.

Meme Hughes:As I said before, I have always felt different from others. I wanted to take this show to other levels, knowing that years ago dance music mixes were taken off the FM dial for a long time. I wanted to bring that back, but with a new flavor and that was internet radio.

I started the station back in 2014 with 15 broadcasters on another free LIVE streaming site which took more than I could even imagine. It was put on hold for a bit and now Jus Muzik Radio has an actual seven page website which is growing, but still needs a lot of work to be where I feel it should be. I am honored and pleased to know that I am the first African American woman to build an internet radio station, bringing some of the best and up to date music there is. I am still in the growing process and looking forward to the future.

GO BANG! Magazine: You also are passionate about teaching, mentoring and giving back to the community. Please describe some of the things that you do, for the love of your people.

Meme Hughes: I love music. I feel that every time I play a set, even if sometimes it’s not received, I am teaching. The radio station is a platform for people to express their talent. Whether you want to add to your resume, give knowledge with your view (talk), express your knowledge of music (broadcaster), Jus Muzik Radio is the platform to help you live your dream and add on to your future.

My future plans are teaching and mentoring some of the youth who are interested in becoming talk/music show host, as well as having pop-ups to spread the word in the community and giving back with different functions to bring the neighborhood together in unity. I feel that it is important that people who love music and have the talent, to be able to express and show their talents to the world. I feel that I have a platform just for them.

GO BANG! Magazine: Are there any projects that you are currently working on that you can share with our readers?

Meme Hughes:I’m still growing and building the station. There will be an annual festival coming at the end of July. “Jus Muzik Radio’s 1st Annual Festival” where there will be music all day for the community. We will be also celebrating our first year anniversary in September as an actual radio website. Then there’s Breast Cancer Awareness in October, Thanksgiving Food giveaway in November and a Clothes & Toy drive for the children in December.

Stay tuned…

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, the COVID-19 pandemic has caught the world off guard. How are you dealing with it?

Meme Hughes:It was so scary, but I have learned to cope and just continue living and accomplishing my goals and dreams safely.

Peace & Blessings to everyone and Safely Social Distance.

Thank you so much!

GO BANG! Magazine: You’re soooo welcome!

FOLLOW MeMe Hughes AT:
MeMe Hughes/FoxXxy Email:
FoxXxy Fan Page:                                                                                                                                Jus Muzik Radio Group Page:                                                                                               Jus Muzik Radio Fan Page:                                                                                                    FoxXxy Instagram:                                                                                                                  Jus Muzik Radio Instagram:                                                                                                         Jus Muzik Radio Twitter:                                                                                                        FoxXxy MixCloud:                                                                                                                               Jus Muzik Radio MixCloud:                                                                                                  Jus Muzik Radio SoundCloud:



Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

Photo Credit:  Roy “Doc” Kemp 

(L to R) Go Bang!Magazine’s Pierre A. Evans, Andrew Kitchen, Harold Leffridge and Roy “Doc” Kemp

APRIL 1, 2021 UPDATE!!!!


Andrew Kitchen comes to us from right here in Chicago. He started as a dancer and toured with the two-time award winning group ”Kitchen, and his Dancin’ Magicians, which he founded. He became an original Soul Train dancer in 1971 at the tender age of 11 years old, after lying about his age to meet the high school age requirement of the show.

Recently, the Soul Train dancer veteran, who was also the host of hundreds of episodes of his own tv dance show, the legendary Attack of the Boogie (1983-2014) on local cable access network (CAN TV), celebrated the reissue of his dance show’s 1984 theme song. His original release “Attack of the Boogie” is still today one of the most popular and in-demand songs in France and it’s hard to find here in the U.S.

Kitchen’s latest project is a remix of the tv show’s theme song, which is available on a compilation 12-inch from Chicago label Star Creature Universal Vibrations. Kitchen is thinking about rebooting Attack of the Boogie tv show and renaming it Attack of the Boogie Reloaded.

“Attack of the Boogie” 1984 Pilot (Fashion edition) link:

Classic “Attack Of The Boogie” tv show link (kids edition):

GO BANG! Magazine had a chance to meet and hang out with Andrew Kitchen at his record-release party, which was held in Chicago at the Promontory (upper patio) in Chicago’s trendy Hyde Park neighborhood. He attended, along with his longtime DJ Kool Hersh, who hosted the event. Of course RSVPs, masks and temperature checks were required, due to the current Covid-19 pandemic the world is currently going through.

Even with a pandemic going on, the event turned out great and it was such an honor and pleasure to meet and chill with him, his family and friends.

GO BANG! Magazine: When and how did you know that you wanted to professionally be a part of the entertainment industry as a dancer?

Andrew Kitchen: Well, I was dipping into art, doing sketches, drawing comic books, pictures, until one day my dad said to me, ”WOW’, you’re a good artist! You’re gonna make a lot of money after you die.” I was done. (lol) I started watching local tv dance shows and got interested in dancing fast.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being a former dancer on the original Soul Train show is quite an honor and historic. Please describe to our readers what it felt like to be an 11 year-old boy on the set of Soul Train.

Andrew Kitchen: It felt like another world, knowing that everyone was at least a few years older than me. But they made me feel welcome. Especially after a few dance moves that always turned out different than the original dance moves everyone else was doing. Which caught the host’s attention..

GO BANG! Magazine: How long did you dance on Soul Train and what is one of your best memories from the show?

Andrew Kitchen: I danced on the show for at least five years. My best memory from the show was performing in two high energy dance groups:

1.) The Ten Commandments (but there were only 5 of us, so we change the name to ”THE COMMANDMENTS”

2.) Dancing Super Heros”.

GO BANG! Magazine: Don Cornelius, the founder of Soul Train, was a talented but complicated Black man. Please describe to our readers your memory of him.

Andrew Kitchen: Don was sort of complicated. Kind of hard headed at times. But he knew what he wanted. He wanted to do SOUL TRAIN so bad, that after Channel 26 (WCIU) picked it up and the show got popular, Channel 26 could have taken the show and the rights and replaced Don. Don did not own the rights to the show at the time. His idea was never copyright / registered. Lucky for him his associates informed him so he could take immediate action.

GO BANG! Magazine: Having an entrepreneurial drive, you founded and hosted your own tv dance show, Attack of the Boogie in 1983. Why did you think that you could launch a dance show, host it and make it successful?

Andrew Kitchen: After Soul Train ended in Chicago, I felt there was a void. I always wanted to have my own dance show, but wanted it to stand out more. After the success that Don had with Soul Train in Chicago, I knew it was time for something new. So, I did what no other dance show has ever done. I created ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE” (the name had to stand out and get people talking) The dancers had to live up to the name when performing. We also did something that no other dance show had ever done at the time. We added a live studio audience to cheer the dancers on, along with a Fashion segment for up and coming models and designers/boutiques. The show was only 30 minutes, but had a big impact and the excitement to keep fans tuning in every week. After a few years, there was a waiting list, for up to a year, to be part of the studio audience.

GO BANG! Magazine: Many of our readers remember the tv show and especially the catchy theme song. What made you decide to re-release the theme song as a remix?

Andrew Kitchen: After seeing copies online like ebay bidding as high as a couple of hundred (dollars) and constant requests for any available copies anywhere, I didn’t have any idea where to go until DJ Kool Hersh contacted me about a reissue of the theme as a remix on vinyl.

GO BANG! Magazine: At the recent record release party in Chicago, your longtime DJ Kool Hersh hosted the event. How did you two first meet and what is it that keeps you two working together?

Andrew Kitchen: Our first meeting was at Starbucks, where he told me he was a big fan of the theme song (he had won the bid on ebay to purchase it.) He told me about the labels plans (Star Creature Records) to release a vinyl 12-inch featuring the theme song as a remix and title the Vinyl Release ”Attack Of The Chicago Boogie.” I like the direction the label is going. I like working with DJ Kool Hersh because he has great communication and fresh ideas to keep moving forward in this ever changing music world.

GO BANG! Magazine: There’s also talk about you bringing Attack of the Boogie dance show back to television. Tell us if this is true and if so, tell us more about the rebooted show.

Andrew Kitchen: Yes! We are working on bringing the show back to fans, because we love our fans, and this is something that they have asked and requested for years. So there will be not one, but two versions.

First off, while Covid-19 is still in effect, in early 2021 we will be releasing a weekly re-edited version of the show called ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE RELOADED” featuring classic episodes with fresh new interviews from your favorite dancers and classic performances from big name artists and entertainers.

After Covid-19 has ended, (being positive), we will be bringing back a full NEW live version of ”ATTACK OF THE BOOGIE.” We promise it will be just as entertaining as the Original and it will still feature the popular ”POWER DANCE CIRCLE!”

GO BANG! Magazine: The Covid-19 pandemic has dampened and ruined the entire year of 2020 thus far, for many people. They are dealing with it in various ways. Some are doing just fine, while others are depressed because of loneliness or death to loved ones, due to the virus. How has the pandemic affected you?

Andrew Kitchen: You are so correct. It has done damage for many people, businesses and entertainers in so many ways. Many projects for me also stopped, due to no studio audience and the lack of dancers and actors to complete the production in a quality way. The challenge of staying healthy is still at risk. I’m praying for everyone for a positive and healthy outcome.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being a Black man in America today is dangerous on a daily basis. We have ALL experienced it in different ways. How have you been affected by systematic racism and have you witnessed White privilege? If so, please describe the instance for our readers.

Andrew Kitchen: During the years of my career, I have experienced more than my share. From being in the right place at the wrong time to being pulled over for taking friends home (and did I mention not making it home?) It’s something that we have to be smarter about in certain situations if you want to get through it. But, it is always easier said than done)

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, what are your current plans for the future?

Andrew: We are producing a NEW FRIDAY MORNING WAKE UP ENTERTAINMENT SHOW CALLED: ”THE WEEKEND PARTY” that I will be hosting along with a co-host (to assist people to get up for that final drive to work for the weekend with energy, incentives, music, on-location events, guest and a happy/fun feeling to make it through the final work day before the weekend.)

The show will premiere in EARLY 2021 (On local Broadcast Channels) ALSO A BRAND NEW NU-POP/SINGLE WILL BE RELEASE IN A THE NEXT MONTH OR SO ENTITLED: ”MY HEART PLAYS FOR YOU” (ANDREW KITCHEN-FEATURING PEPPER GOMEZ) I feel this is my best musical work to date. (Original & Fresh) I hope you enjoy it.

Lastly, to To GO BANG! Magazine, “THANK YOU and MUCH SUCCESS to you.

“Attack Of The Boogie” Andrew Kitchen 4 Real Music Official Video Edit By Marcus Mixx
Video Link:

Follow Andrew Kitchen on ALL social media formats @Andrew Kitchen

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

Longevity is the word that describes Tony Gray’s career. In a downsizing industry, the St. Louis native remains a principle player. In 2009/2010, Radio Ink Magazine named Gray one of the most influential African Americans in Radio. His client list includes some of the most successful Urban, Urban AC, and Hip Hop stations, to his first client KPRS in Kansas City, Mo (America’s first owned African American radio station). It was here that the late broadcast pioneer, Skip Carter, saw something special in Tony. Today, his passion to provide clients with top notch service preserves his place as a leader in his field.

Tony’s passion for music was fueled at an early age. His initial influences were Hall of Fame Broadcasters Harry Caray (KMOX) and Don St. John (Powerhouse KWK). While in high school, Tony landed an intern position at St. Louis rock station KSLQ. After graduation, he headed to Normal, Illinois to study communications at Illinois State. With a degree in hand, Tony got his first paying job at a small country station in Peoria, IL. However, it was not long before Dan Valle offered him a job at WEZB (B97), in New Orleans, holding down the 10p to 2a shift.
Tony’s career would take him to markets like Baton Rouge,
Detroit, and Philadelphia where he was a star radio personality on Power 99 under the name “Mike Jackson.” After a few years at Power, Tony’s mentor, Barry Mayo, offered him the job of a lifetime; Program Director at WRKS Kiss 98.7 in New York City. Kiss was New York’s number one radio station for nine books in a row.

In 1990 Tony left WRKS to start his own consultancy company. 25 years later, Tony is still living his dream.

GO BANG! Magazine: For our readers that may not be familiar with you, would you please briefly give our readers a synopsis of your professional work history?

Tony Gray: I began my career in radio as a intern at KSLQ in St. Louis, MO. From there, I worked at WGLT, the campus station, as an undergrad student at Illinois State University in Normal, IL. After college, I worked at WGOK in Mobile, AL for a short time, before accepting a job at WEZB in New Orleans, LA. That lead to programing jobs in Baton Rouge, LA at WTKL,WOWI, Norfolk, VA, WDRQ, Detroit, MI, WUSL, Philadelphia, PA and WRKS, New York, NY.

GO BANG! Magazine: When did you know that you want to be involved in Radio?

Tony Gray: I first became interested in Radio at the very early age of 13.

GO BANG! Magazine: What is it about Radio that attracted you?

Tony Gray: Aside from the ability to entertain, Radio offers the ability to inform and connect with the local community.

GO BANG! Magazine: As a Black man in Radio, with your own business, you are an inspiration to many. What advice would you give to a young person that’s trying to break into the Radio industry?

Tony Gray: My advice to anyone coming into the broadcast industry is to study the ever changing Media landscape and work hard to accomplish your long-term and short-term goals.

GO BANG! Magazine: You are currently the Radio President and CEO of Gray Communications in Chicago. Please tell our readers about your company and its mission.

Tony Gray: Our mission is to deliver quality programming to the markets we serve.

GO BANG! Magazine: You’re also a consultant. What type of specific consulting do you provide to your clients?

Tony Gray: Our consulting services focus on programming and management.

GO BANG! Magazine: I have personally witnessed you participating in several community events and student mentor programs. Why is it important for you to give back to the community.

Tony Gray: I have always believed in giving back and helping the next generation.

You can follow Tony Gray on social media and log on to the Gray Communications website:

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the Owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions and the Owner/Publisher of GO BANG! Magazine. Follow him on Facebook @Pierre Andre Evans, Twitter @Playerre, and on Instagram @Pierre_Andre_Evans.

Photo by Marcus Pizer
Make up by Viola Nicholson 


While other women were watching the game in the industry, DJ Celeste Alexander dared to play it.

Wife, mother, DJ and co-owner of a music label, Celeste manages to balance these responsibilities while delivering and creating some of the deepest, soulful mixes in today’s house music landscape.

Celeste was introduced to DJing by the legendary Steve “Silk” Hurley in 1982. During that time, dance music was still young, being shaped into a culture and genre that is now known worldwide as House Music. Celeste was learning her craft with the likes of many Chicago’s pioneers in the industry such as: Terry Hunter, Maurice Joshua, Ron Carroll, Ron Trent, Vick Lavender, Jamie 3:26, Mike Dunn and Gene Hunt, along with countless other DJs and producers from the Chicago area that have grown to giants in the industry. Celeste was the daring female in an otherwise male dominated industry, holding her own and making a name for herself in the Chicago music scene. She, to this very day, remains the only female who has played with the late legend Ron Hardy in his home, “The Music Box”.

Celeste’s motivation is to continue to play while debunking the myth that mixing was gender specific. Through mentorship and tutelage of such icons as Frankie Knuckles & Andre Hatchett, and the unwavering support of such noted DJs as Wayne Williams, Celeste has and continues to be a force to be reckoned with. Celeste took a hiatus for about 10 years, returning in 2006 with the desire to again be a part of the culture she left. She fell in love with how house music had progressed and wanted more than ever to play again.

In 2007, she didn’t miss a beat. With an offer of an opportunity to have her own internet radio show on This was the springboard to give Celeste a worldwide platform to express herself. Her show, The Celestial Odyssey is still going strong since its debut As a part of the Cyberjamz family for more than 13 years, she now is using The Celestial Odyssey as a personal brand on various internet mediums.

In 2009, she joined forces with Vick Lavender and Steven Stewart to become co-owner of Sophisticado Recordings, which is one of today’s most quality labels in the industry. To her credit, she has released several tracks under the Sophisticado name. “Nasty Bitch”, her collaboration with legendary pioneer Terry Hunter, was released that year and hit top 10 on the charts. Two years later, Celeste was named one of the top 100 most influential DJs in Chicago house history.

In 2013, she joined forces with BlondBabe Promotions. Under this management, she successfully maintained a residency at Chicago’s Underground Wonder Bar with “An Evening with The Lady of House” and quickly became one of the best experiences of music and dance on the Chicago House Scene.

In 2015, she was inducted to the DJ Hall of Fame and received the Frankie Knuckles Lifetime Achievement Award at the 25th Anniversary celebration of the Chosen Few Picnic.

Celeste has played in various clubs in various cities nationwide and has shared the decks with names like Ron Carroll, The Chosen Few, Jihad Muhammad, Ian Friday, Boo Williams, Lou Gorbea, and Grammy winning DJ Louie Vega, among many others. Today, she is the Musical Director/Talent Liaison for The Summer Oasis Festival in historic Idlewild, Michigan. She has played various festivals including Being the first female to play The Chosen Few Picnic, The Chicago House Music Festival, Divas of House, Herstory @ Chicago’s Dailey Plaza, several of The Silver Room Block club parties, The Attic Picnic, and at Coney Island in NY. She recently had a feature article in the re-launch of “Faith Fanzine” and closed out The Ron Hardy Tribute and fundraiser in grand fashion. She has partnered with Tastemaker Duane Powell in Sound Rotation events and been featured several times with the Honeycomb Music Radio show featuring Josh Milan, all while maintaining her internet radio show every Saturday now exclusively on

When I first started playing public, I would wear baggy clothes and a baseball cap so the people wouldn’t know it was a female playing,” says Celeste. “After I got them dancing, I would take off the sweatshirt, and baseball cap so they could see that they were dancing to a female playing. I love the shock factor!

Staying true to her craft and shattering stereotypes remains to be Celeste motivation and dedication to an industry that is far more main stream than many give credit to.

Funky, Fearless, and Forever one of Chicago’s First Ladies of House!

GO BANG! Magazine: When did you first get started as a DJ, and what did you like most about it?

DJ Celeste Alexander:  I started learning in 1981. My first paid gig was in spring of 1982. My first love was learning the technical side of mixing and blending. At the time it was thought mixing was gender specific, that females could not grasp the skillset. I was really into shattering that stereotype.

GO BANG! Magazine: It is truly incredible that you were introduced in to Djing by Steve “Silk” Hurley, the 4-Time GRAMMY® Nominated Remixer. Please describe how you two met and how he eventually introduced you to the 1s & 2s.

DJ Celeste Alexander: Steve and I went to college together (Loop Jr. aka Harold Washington Jr. College). I had quite the crush on him back then. We had a couple of classes together and use to hang out in the lunchroom together. He always talked about “hot-mixing”

I asked him what it was, and he described it to me. I asked were there any girls doing it, he told me no. The myth was that women couldn’t (as in we didn’t have the coordination for it) but, he knew it was a myth because he had taught his younger sister how to do it. That whole part about females not being able to do it kind of stuck with me. It made me want to dig deeper and learn. Steve was the catalyst to me wanting to learn more about the craft. Eventually we ended up playing a lot of parties together and doing a lot of record shopping together.

GO BANG! Magazine: While pursuing your DJ career, you broke down a lot of barriers that were up against women. You were literally one of the first lady DJs. Please describe to our readers how you felt at the time, when you were trailblazing a path for women in DJ’ing.

DJ Celeste Alexander: Most times, especially after being accepted by some of my male counterparts, the experiences were great. I had a lot of fun, both honing my skills, learning the craft and playing parties. There were other times when it was difficult. Being a “first” woman breaking into any male dominated field ALWAYS has its difficulties. I didn’t consider myself a trailblazer at the time, by the time I was in regular rotations, and grinding with the rest of the fellas, I was learning, creating, partying and having fun. I don’t think any of us thought this culture would be as large as it is now back then. We were just out having constructive fun.

GO BANG! Magazine: As a resident of Chicago, the home of House music, you are recognized as one of the first female DJs. You were also one of the only women to perform with the late Ron Hardy at the legendary Music Box. What influence, if any, do you feel you have had on DJs and the House music scene? Also, how has House influenced you?

DJ Celeste Alexander: I was the ONLY woman to play with Ronnie at the Music Box, lol. And to be honest I can’t say what influences I may have had on someone else. I do know that I have mentored both women and men who are either breaking or grinding on the scene now. House music and the culture is one of the biggest influences of my life. Music has ALWAYS provided me with a place to be free. The underground dance scene is the place where I grew up, became an adult. House/Dance music has always provided a space of comfort and expression.

GO BANG! Magazine: In the past, female DJs were more of a novelty, and not taken as serious as their male counterparts. Do you think that image has changed and why or why not?

DJ Celeste Alexander: I have Never considered myself a novelty period. My grind is hard. I’ve ALWAYS strived to improve upon skillset and work ethic, I am constantly seeking out music and how to present it. Now a non-believer may consider me a novelty upon a first encounter, until they experience me playing!

Truth is presentation is everything. If you present yourself as a gimmick, that’s how you will be received. There are MANY Female’s in the field that are the REAL DEAL, because that’s how the present themselves, back that up with mastery of your skills, how can anyone NOT take you seriously? BUT, there are still many women that represent themselves with everything, but seriousness and true craftsmanship. If you show up like a joke, who is going to take you serious? Yes, some of the overall imagery has changed, but that’s because the glass ceilings have been broken in many areas, and many more women have stepped out and been extremely successful in doing so.

GO BANG! Magazine: You mentioned that in your early DJ years, you used to wear baggy clothes and a baseball cap, so that people wouldn’t know that it was a female playing. Then you would do your reveal and shock them. Please describe to our readers, one of your most memorable times when you made your revealed.

DJ Celeste Alexander: Until I had established myself as a DJ/mix-artist, I always wore baggy clothes. The baseball cap was added because when I did my first party, I showed up with lipstick on and clearly female when you saw me, I was not received well at all. In fact, I was booed and never actually given a chance to play. I was taken off the decks after my 3 songs, all based upon being female. The patrons had never seen a girl play before. I clearly was not a part of the scenario of their expectations.

I figured if the crowd didn’t know who was playing and assumed it was a guy playing, I would at least have the chance TO play. See, I needed the MUSIC to speak if allowed. So, after a few songs and the crowd doing what they came to do, DANCE, I would turn my back, to look for another record and return forward without the cap. After a couple of more songs, I would do the same and remove my sweatshirt, (with a tank top or tee-shirt underneath of course)! By then I had them there was nothing left to do but dance cause by then the crowd was rocking!

GO BANG! Magazine: In 2015, SolKat established “The Queens of House Picnic” here in Chicago. How does it feel to see the seeds that you planted years ago, currently sprouting and prospering in the House community?

DJ Celeste Alexander: I am proud to see the ladies finally getting the shine they deserve. I have played a couple of the Queens of House Picnics myself. It’s good to see women that are finally getting the respect, and to watch those seeds prosper and thrive.

GO BANG! Magazine: There are several DJ’s out there with mad skills, both male and female. Which ones do you personally like and which ones would you love to DJ with, but haven’t thus far?

DJ Celeste Alexander: I’ve been blessed over the years to make some awesome connections to other DJ’s I admire in the industry, and even more fortunate to have played with many of them. There are quite a few I would love to play with again. I have a plethora of personal favorites, too many to name them all. I think my desire is to play more-so in places I’ve never been, to cultures I have never experienced. For me it not Who I want to play with, its more Where I would love to play at!

GO BANG! Magazine: In addition to being a DJ, you’re a successful businesswoman. Please introduce our readers to your internet radio show on

DJ Celeste Alexander: I was afforded an opportunity to have my own internet radio show on back in 2007. I was given a shot by my NuBang Collective brother Sammy Rock. Cyberjamz was at the time the first and only independently owned radio station totally dedicated to House Music platforms. My show The Celestial Odyssey ran every week until the end of 2019. In 2020, I went independent with the brand and started doing shows on FB Live and now exclusively on TwitchTV. 2020 and COVID bought a whole different set of challenges to many DJ’s. For the past 9-10 months, we all have been trying to find platforms to consistently showcase our talents. Fortunately for me, I had Cyberjamz, so live interactive video/audio/chat was not foreign to me as it may have been to many so the adjustment was not as major as it may have been for many. As of right now, you can catch The Celestial Odyssey- The Journey Continues live, every Saturday from 3-5 pm (CST) on I also have audio podcast on multiple platforms including, Apple Music, Google Music and soon to be on Amazon music. I will always be grateful to Sammy and my Cyberjamz family for the times spent on their station. If it weren’t for it, I would never have broken the siloed patterns that many Chicago DJ’s had fallen into. Due to my exposure through cyberjamz, I have been able to make connections to music lovers, other DJ’s, producers, artist, musicians from across the world. Cyberjamz opened up the world for me and made it my oyster.

GO BANG! Magazine: You’re also “Married with Children.” Has business or the music bug rubbed off on your children, or are they not interested in the entertainment industry?

DJ Celeste Alexander: Both of my sons love music of all kinds, my eldest probably went to more House music events than the average Househead growing up. Lol, my youngest is in college and dabbles in studio work currently, but loves the hip-hop culture.

I helped teach my husband how to play. He is one hellova DJ in his own right!

GO BANG! Magazine: You’ve joined forces with Vick Lavender and Steven Stewart to become co-owner of Sophisticado Records. How did this partnership come about and what is the mission of the record label?

DJ Celeste Alexander: Vick and I became very good friends after meeting at the WMC in 2008, I think it was. We have been very close ever since, he’s like a younger brother to me. While he was trying to get his label off the ground, I helped in any way I could. My contributions to the label would be more of the business and contractual side of the brand and business. I have however learned a whole lot about next level facets of the music industry through our connection. Vick is an incredible and very creative talent. He has a vision of his music and how he wants it presented. It has been a pleasure to watch him grow and flourish in the industry. It has been even more of a pleasure to be a part of it. ~ If it ain’t Soul, we don’t do it~

Go Bang Magazine: Are you currently working on any new projects that you would like to mention to our readers?

DJ Celeste Alexander: I have a couple of things in the works musically. I am the Musical Director for The Summer Oasis Music Festival held in Idlewild Michigan annually. Of course, COVID did a job on us this year, but we are already in the planning phases for 2021 and beyond. Now that I am an “Empty Nester” I have the freedom to spread my wings a little more, we will see what 2021 brings.

GO BANG! Magazine: The world just recently lost DJ Angie Stone, another DJ Queen. What do you remember most about her? If you have a fond memory of her, please share it with our readers.

DJ Celeste Alexander: I miss Anji. We were sisters and friends. I mostly appreciated her tenacity; she reminded me very much of myself when I was a younger DJ. The word “NO” was not acceptable; she would make her own way successfully. She was determined to make her own “Yes” and she did JUST THAT! Rest in Musical Paradise My Dear Sister of Sound.

GO BANG! Magazine: In conclusion, the COVID-19 pandemic has caught the world off guard. How are you dealing with it?

DJ Celeste Alexander: One day at a time. A lot of prayer. Keeping busy inside as much as possible. Staying positive that this too shall pass. Staying diligent with my weekly show, the music and any music related projects that I have been able to immerse myself into. Trying to keep myself busy and my brand relevant, because one day the world will open back up, and I want to be ready to go jump in and play!!!

You can follow DJ Celeste Alexander:

FB: fan page
The Celestial Odyssey- TJC -Every Saturday from 3-5 pm cst on

PodOmatic: Celeste’s podcast- The Celestial Odyssey- Celestethedj Alexander
Apple Podcast /ITunes: ‎Celeste’s podcast- The Celestial Odyssey- Celestethedj Alexander on Apple Podcasts

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

James C. Birdsong, Jr. is an aspiring gospel vocalist, songwriter, motivational speaker, entrepreneur, advocate for our children and author of The Best is Yet to Come: A Testimony of One Young Man’s Redemption, an inspirational memoir published nationally and to this date, received positive reviews and appearances on multiple television, radio and print media platforms nationwide and globally.

A native of Richmond, CA, his efforts have caught the attention and respect of politicians, community, media and entertainment leaders and luminaries. A member of the famed Birdsong family, his lineage includes R&B legend Cindy Birdsong, a former member of Patti LaBelle and the Bluebells and the Supremes, former four-time NBA All-Star pro basketball player Otis Birdsong and the late Edwin Birdsong, a GRAMMY®-Award winner and legendary 1970s era funk keyboardist, who’s music has been sampled by Kanye West, Snoop Dogg and Dalf Punk.

Mr. Birdsong was the great-nephew of the late Rev. Sidney Birdsong, Sr., a respected icon who served as the pastor of the historical Solid Rock Baptist Church in Los Angeles from 1959 to his death in 1976. A graduate of Fairfield High School in Fairfield, CA, Mr. Birdsong earned his Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Education at Beulah Heights University in Atlanta, GA. He is currently pursuing a Graduate certificate in Marketing at the University of Phoenix in Phoenix, AZ.

The recipient of the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement and Marquis Who’s Who Top Artist Award, a listee in Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the World, the Outstanding Georgia Citizen Award, the Congressional Record, the Black Essence Award in Gospel Music, numerous citations, honors, nominations, proclamations and resolutions and an inductee on the Wall of Tolerance at the Civil Rights Memorial Center in Montgomery, AL.

His memberships of major music organizations include the Gospel Music Workshop of America Atlanta Chapter (GMWA), the Stellar Awards Gospel Music Academy (SAGMA) and the Gospel Music Association (GMA Dove Awards). He is working on his next book for youth as a discussion of various topics they face today from dating and relationships to the hip-hop culture and advice on how to enroll in college. The book is scheduled for publication in 2021.

GO BANG! Magazine: When and how did you know that you wanted to professionally pursue a life in the church?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: First and foremost, I want to thank the GO BANG! Magazine family for giving me this opportunity to speak with your audience and the many readers throughout the WORLD.

I was born and raised in Richmond, California. I lived at the corner of Maine Avenue and Harbour Way South in the inner-city southside. My father, the late Rev. James C. Birdsong, Sr., who died in 1997 at 58 years old, was a respected and well-known minister and community activist in Richmond. He was a gifted and talented singer in his own right. However, my father had the opportunity to record, but he never pursued it. My mother, Belinda Germany-Birdsong resides here in Atlanta, Georgia.

I am a member of the world-renowned famed Birdsong family that consists of R&B legend Cindy Birdsong, a former member of the 1960s iconic R&B female groups Patti LaBelle and the Bluebells, and the Supremes; retired NBA four-time all-star pro basketball player Otis Birdsong; and Grammy Award winner, the late Edwin Birdsong, who became famous in the 1970s funk era and sampled by today’s multi-platinum artists such as Snoop Dogg, Kanye West and others. My great-uncle, the late Rev. Sidney Birdsong, Sr. was the pastor of the historic Solid Rock Baptist Church in Los Angeles, California.

I always tell people that God, my family, and my upbringing became the foundation of what I am doing today in my career in the gospel music industry and being a public figure on the national platform. I received my calling and beginnings at a very young age.

GO BANG! Magazine: Nowadays many people are turned off by “religion” and the church, with all of the politics involved and the judgement that sometimes happens between the parishioners, and prefer to say that they are “spiritual” and not “religious”, meaning they don’t attend church. What do you think about that?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: This is a question that has and still continues to raise awareness related to the church. My family roots are Baptist, dating back to my great-grandparents, the late Ed and Ida Birdsong of Greenwood, Louisiana. I come from a long line of preachers in the Birdsong family.

For me, I was raised in the Church of God in Christ and Apostolic denominations during the 1980s and 1990s. I have seen and observed a lot in my childhood and adolescence. I grew up around pastors, first ladies, ministers, evangelists, missionaries, deacons, choir members, musicians, Sunday school teachers and the mothers of the church. There are politics in the church, especially when it comes to the leadership role.

You asked me about people being spiritual and not religious. We are living in a time now that people are not attending church, especially our younger generation. They truly love God. At the same time, people are already wounded from hurts. Instead of them leaving the church delivered and set free, they are going home more hurt, more wounds, and more of their self-esteem being torn down.

There are some people in the leadership role, not all, in the church that are very judgmental and have that “holier than thou” mentality. I can go on and on with this response. This is another reason why the current state of the church is this way. We still have true men and women of God that live and stand on His Word and have a heart for the people. It is sad that certain individuals classified in a group of church leadership are doing wrongful deeds, and make it look bad for the good pastors, leaders, and congregants. The scripture tells us in Matthew 5:16 (KJV), “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” In other words, our assignment is to be an effective and positive example to others by demonstrating God’s love towards one another. We are not doing enough of that today.

GO BANG! Magazine: In addition to being a religious leader, you are also a motivational speaker. What topics have you spoken about and why do you feel that you are an effective motivational speaker?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I have been doing public speaking since I was 12-years old. I have told this story many times before. I was attending Nystrom Elementary School across the street from my house in Richmond, California. The school still exists today. I was in the sixth grade and preparing to graduate. The day before the graduation, my sixth-grade teacher named Donna Grove, a white woman, accompanied me to the auditorium. She and her husband had supported me through the years. I had to rehearse my speech. When I walked on stage, I was feeling very nervous. I said, “Mrs. Grove, I can’t do this.” She looked straight at me and said, “James, you can do this.” Her words gave me confidence. The next morning, I gave my speech and resulted in a stand ovation.

In 2002, God blessed me to return at Nystrom Elementary School to deliver the graduation commencement address. The school honored me in 2003 as the first former student in history to receive their most prestigious award. I usually share my story of being an overcomer to the young people and give them encouragement on how to succeed. I also encourage the parents and adults to love our children and never discouraged them. Prior to speaking at my sixth-grade graduation, my mother told me it was already there.

GO BANG! Magazine: Please explain to our readers what child advocacy is and describe what work you are doing in this area.

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: Child Advocacy is promoting and supporting their needs through mentorship. I am a strong supporter of our youth. God has allowed me to do this in my profession and throughout the community.

GO BANG! Magazine: As an entrepreneur, you recently established Birdsong Association of Broadcasting & Arts, Inc., which trains and guides youth who are interested in performing arts and broadcasting. What motivated you to establish this organization, and why initially in Atlanta, then in Los Angeles, and soon in New York City?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I am very glad you asked me this question. Birdsong Association of Broadcasting & Arts, Inc. is a new 501©3 non-profit organization to help our Black youth in Atlanta, Los Angeles, New York City and throughout the United States, to pursue their dreams and careers in performing arts and broadcasting with various programs and initiatives, partnerships with public school districts, 39 HBCUs, productions, workshops, fundraising activities, scholarships, mentorships, an annual gospel concert and pre-concert VIP awards gala as our benefit and much more.

God gave me this vision in 2018 to move forward in my goal of mentoring today’s youth. I am a strong supporter of our children and have been recognized by elected officials and organizations in this effort. Coming from a family that has been blessed with rich, strong legacy in the entertainment industry, I wanted to do my part to give back. The Birdsong family are strong believers in community service and philanthropic efforts.

Since I reside in Atlanta, our main operations of the organization are located here. We will then move forward with the launch of our second operations in Los Angeles and by faith, a third operation will be established in New York City.

Many of my friends and colleagues in the Gospel music industry and the Entertainment arena at large along with media broadcasters, my supporters and the public at large are very pleased about this organization. They all agree about this effort is needed in the Black community for our children from 5 to 18 years of age. One of our main targets will be our inner-city youth. My publicist is working on an extensive media and marketing campaign for this organization locally and nationally.

GO BANG! Magazine: After all of the previously mentioned accomplishments, you are also an aspiring gospel songwriter and vocalist. I suspect that you are spreading “the word” through song. What is your mission or goal as a Gospel performer?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I grew up singing as a child by listening to my father’s old school records of Rev. James Cleveland and other iconic Gospel artists of the Golden Era. We had a popular gospel radio station, KDIA 1310 AM, in the San Francisco Bay area. I remember this radio station playing the popular hits by Shirley Caesar, Rev. Timothy Wright, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, the Winans and especially my fellow Bay Area natives, the Hawkins Family. They are from Oakland, California. I would make up songs, and later, I would sing in the choir at 10 years old.

By the time I was 16 years old, I begin my journey of studying the business side of the Gospel music industry while obtaining vocal coaching. God has blessed me to be connected in the Gospel music industry throughout the United States. My goal is to proclaim a message of hope while mentoring our younger generation as a vocalist, songwriter and industry professional.

GO BANG! Magazine: You have authored two books thus far, “One Marriage, Many Tales, And a Separation: A Message of Hope” and “The Best is Yet to Come: A Testimony of One Young Man’s Redemption.” In 2021, you plan to publish a third book, which is a discussion geared toward the youth and the various topics they face, such as dating, relationships, hip hop culture and college enrollment. I commend you and look forward to its’ publishing. What do you think about the current youth of today, in relation to their participation and responsibility in the civil-unrest movement going on today?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I am very concern about today’s youth. I am from the Millennial generation. Right now, I am going to focus on Generation Z, which are the children born between the late 1990s to now. A lot has changed in the course of 25 to 30 years. I am comparing my upbringing to the generation today. I was blessed with both parents in the home. When I see the current state of today’s youth, we have a lot of work to do. Many of them are from single parent homes, the fathers are not present, living in an environment where drugs, gangs and violence are around, and the list goes on. Many of these young people feel there is no hope for them, nobody is listening to them, nobody is giving them the chance to showcase their God given talents, and certain people they look up to as mentors and role models have failed them. I want to encourage our youth of today. God has chosen, created, and given you a purpose in life. You are going to succeed regardless of what is going on in society. Never allow any obstacles hold you back from your goals. Stay out of trouble. You are special in God’s eyesight. People are going to criticize and have their voice of opinion. Do not allow that to define you or your character. You are loved and respected.

GO BANG! Magazine: Being a Black man in America today is dangerous on a daily basis. We have ALL experienced it in different ways. How have you been affected by systematic racism and have you witnessed White privilege? If so, please describe the instance for our readers.

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: Growing up in Richmond, California in an all-Black neighborhood, I learned early in life who I was as a Black man in America through observations. I grew up surrounding by diversity, since I am from the San Francisco Bay Area. I had been blessed to attend schools in both the Black and White communities and had friends and acquaintances in different nationalities and cultures. I had Black and White teachers and they all pushed and encouraged me to strive for greatness.

I have experienced racism myself, but not on the systematic level. I remember during the 1990s, the Black community was being affected from being followed in the stores and shopping malls, as if they were going to commit a crime such as stealing. This particular situation made national headlines and caused anger throughout the Black community.

I had experienced this firsthand when I was 16 years old. My mother came to pick me up from school. I was in my sophomore year at Fairfield High School in Fairfield, California. My parents were already divorced. This happened a year before my father’s sudden death. Before we went home to our apartment, my mother needed to go to the store. This particular grocery store was very popular at the time before they merged with another company. I grew up shopping at this store with my parents in Richmond. While my mother and I were in the store, she went to the poultry department to purchase catfish and tiger prawn shrimp for dinner. I went to the area where the school supplies were located. I needed a pack of line paper for school. While I was over there, there were two older White men employed at this store. I saw them on other occasions prior to this incident. They followed me over there and assumed I was going to steal. My mother was nearby and saw what they were doing. She was about to go off on these men. Now, my mother is a sweet, God fearing woman. She said to them, “If you do this to my son again, I will report you to the NAACP.” They backed off and walked away shameful.

My name was already being recognized in Fairfield, Suisun City, and surrounding areas due to ministry, leadership abilities and my classmates referring to me as “the Pastor of Fairfield High School.” Not too long after that, we received word these same two White men were fired, due to other complaints from other Black shoppers. These men did not know that I had a cousin that worked at this same store in the poultry department, nor they did not know I am a member of a renowned famous family. My cousin was not working that day. My mother had a serious discussion with me about this situation on our way home. God was with me that day and I am grateful he revealed to my mother what was going on. If she did not see this, those racist white men would have called the police on me on a false accusation.

GO BANG! Magazine: The Covid-19 pandemic has dampened and ruined the entire year of 2020 thus far, for many people. They are dealing with it in various ways. Some are doing just fine, while others are depressed because of loneliness or death to loved ones, due to the virus. What words of encouragement or motivation can you provide to readers who need help dealing with our current new normal?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I have been asked this particular question in recent press interviews regarding the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic has been very challenging for all of us, especially for those of us in the Gospel music industry and Entertainment arena at large. We have been doing award ceremonies, concerts, and meetings virtually.

It does not matter what race, culture, or your social status maybe, we have experienced something that never came to our minds. For me and my family, we have been taking measures to remain safe. God is still blessing us in spite of the pandemic. This situation is only temporary.

At the same time, we need to take a close examination of ourselves and get more close to God. These are the signs of the last days. My thoughts and prayers go out to those who lost their loved ones to the pandemic. I want to encourage them to be strong and to remain positive.

GO BANG! Magazine: Many youth, particularly young black men, may look to you as a role model and an example of how to achieve success while being Black. Can you please explain how you overcame the many obstacles in your life to achieve the accomplishments you have?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: God brought me through a mighty long way from Richmond, California to now. I could not talk at the age of three, due to being born with a speech impediment. He healed me and I share this story on multiple media platforms on television, radio, newspapers, and magazines. I attended school in the Special Education Program. I have experience teasing and bullying, the divorce of my parents, the death of my father and other situations. It made me strong. I thank God for the people in my life that loved me, supported me, prayed for me, and never gave up on me.

I never thought I would be the recipient of over 30 awards, including proclamations from mayors to members of the United States Congress. Now I am going to be honored in the Congressional Record. I have been told by so many people, “James, you are truly a role model to our young people, especially our young black men.” Recently, I had someone tell me, “You are about to be an icon.”

The prayers of my parents and the encouragement of friends, loved ones, teachers and mentors inspire me to be the man God placed me today. Your gift will make room for you. I was not raised to be a quitter and our young people need to remind themselves, “I am not going to quit. I am somebody.”

GO BANG! Magazine: What words of wisdom can you provide to our non-Black readers to help them understand what life is like being Black during these tumultuous times, and can you suggest what they can do to help make this world a better place for us all?

James C. Birdsong, Jr.: I want to encourage the non-Black readers to learn and be open about our struggles. It is not easy for us as Black people. We go through so much, but more so as a Black man. If you truly love and care for the Black community, demonstrate how much you care through your actions. Be an effective listener and be yourself. Remember, action speaks louder than words.

I believe the world can be a better place if we apply God’s Word in our lives and perform the works.

I want to thank you for giving me this opportunity to share my story with your audience.

Be safe and may God bless you.

GO BANG! Magazine: You are more than welcome…Thank YOU!

Additional Links
James C. Birdsong, Jr. Website:  
Birdsong Association of Broadcasting & Arts Website:

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram

DJ Matt Black is a UK based House and Techno producer and DJ most known for his funky, driving baselines, and uniquely engaging style. Born Matthew Belcher, Matt is a House/Techno producer and DJ most known for his first official release “Let Them Groove” which generated over 1 million streams worldwide.

Starting his career in England’s notorious seedy underground scene, he released white label mash-ups. He owned one of the first pirate FM radio stations in the southwest. He has also been featured multiple times on BBC Radio.

DJ Matt Black has become a prominent influencer in the House and Tech House scene, collaborating with many artists, and entertaining crowds around the world with his funky, driving baselines, and uniquely engaging style.

On August 21, 2020, Matt released a new track titled 2AM. 2AM is bringing back the old-school vibes of the 90s with its raw underground rave feel. He wanted to create something modern, but at the same time keep with the decade of love. Matt has found that the music of today is no contribution of the years of yesterday, and it has lost its path with same sounding tracks spread throughout the charts. He wanted to relight the good years and bring some feel-good music to the table and contribute to the music scene. That’s why he chose to make 2AM. Matt has said that after making this track, “My love for the music has grown even deeper!” and has even gone to the extreme to say “I am now ONE within my house!”

GO BANG! Magazine: When and how did you get interested in music?

DJ Matt Black: From a very young age, my household was playing music, all different genres from Hip Hop to Rave and House. I mean everything. So I heard literally everything and anything. Growing up just with my mother was quite liberating. Without the father figure in the picture, I looked to other individuals in my life and in music.

My mother was like a New Age Hippy-Go-Raver and she had mountains of tapes from UK raves. I listened to all of them and it was a mixture of Breakbeat and House and all sorts mixed up together, which today would be considered sub-genres. One of the first steps in music for me was admiring these amazing tunes.

GO BANG! Magazine: When did you develop an interest in House and Techno music?

DJ Matt Black: I started really loving music between the years 1998–1999. Since that time, I have never stopped listening to and admiring music, regardless of the genre. In 1999 I got my first tape player. Like I said, I grew up with just my mother. Times were tough back then and we couldn’t afford internet or even cable television. So literally, music was my escape and still is to this day.

My love for these genres comes from UK Jungle and all of the House samples used, no names mentioned, and also watching “The Top of the Pops” (UK TV show) before it went all wired.

GO BANG! Magazine: Please describe the House music scene in the UK.

DJ Matt Black: The House music scene here in the UK is amazing. Even from the beginning, it’s been so multicultural and literally a place of pure love. The British people have infused all their own cultures into this genre. So many great sub-genres and new genres have been a result of it. I grew up at an amazing time to be able to experience the greats of House music, the ones that shaped House music, and see the birth of new House music, like UKG (United Kingdom Garage: a sub-genre to House called Garage. It’s made in the UK from Hip Hop House or Two Step).

I may have not have been with the founding fathers of House in the beginning, but I’ve sure enjoyed the fruits it has produced and watched it turn into something great. I couldn’t see a world without House or could image a world without the other genres it has created.

We are the children of House, we are that what follows and it’s up to us to maintain its glory, add to its perfection, try new things, take it too new directions, and most of all do not let the music groups saturate it.

GO BANG! Magazine: You started your career in England’s notorious seedy underground scene. For those that may not be familiar with England, please describe the scene to our readers, and how you got started.

DJ Matt Black: I first started my journey into music at around the age of 10 or 11 years old. I used to go ‘round my friend Gary’s house. He was the first person that induced me to music production software and DJ’ing. He had a set of Technics 1210 MK2s and I used to spend every day around his house, without fail. He would have to literally boot me out to go home. I begged my mother for ages to get me some decks, and it was my auntie that finally got me my first set when I was about 13 years old. They were some belt-driven bad boys. Oh they were some fun. I had my shed all set up with an old PC and decks and used to practice every day ripping samples from vinyl and all sorts.

I did my first gig at a carnival back in my hometown when I was about 14 years old. I met a few people and got offered to play at Bristol Festival. I obviously went. I had these two women looking after me. I can remember them trying to feed me mushrooms before I went on stage. Thank God I didn’t touch them. I went on after a group called the Freestylers.

After this, I realized that after being in front of a couple thousand people that I wasn’t quite ready to be in that position. So, I took a step back and started hanging around a few friends that loved music as much as me. We hosted illegal parties in many crazy locations like shut down stores, abandoned houses, and even gate crashed a few places and made the party ours, while still doing events in my hometown.

I then started my own pirate radio station. I made a good friend order a transmitter for me from China and another good friend brought the aerial for me. I hooked it all up and was live every weekend. It was more like a community radio, as everyone from everywhere wanted to come on. I also wanted them to come on as well, to boost their creativity and musical skill.

From my late teens to early twenties, I wasn’t making that much music for myself. I was doing it for other people and really was in the back seat. I made a ton of white label mashups and remixes during this time, with some being pressed. I even had known figures steal music.

If I had to describe what the underground is to me, it’s simply these so-called friends that take advantage of you for their own personal gain. It’s bitchiness, backstabbing and all things bad that you expect to see on a drama show. That’s what it is, just pure drama with each other and the outside world because they’re not involved in your “clique.”

I have now disassociated myself from all things underground or group associated and moving in a more positive direction for myself and my music.

GO BANG! Magazine: As a producer/DJ, how would you describe the DJ Matt Black production sound and the DJ Matt Black sound?

DJ Matt Black: If you listen to any of my newest productions, you will hear that I’m swinging from 90s House vibes to Tech-House, with dark elements and hidden messages for the masses.

I have two moods when producing: very dark or very bright and energetic. The love and support I’m getting at Trax Records, creativity-wise, is unreal. They are allowing me to push some boundaries and try some new sounds.

GO BANG! Magazine: You’ve collaborated and performed with numerous House artists. Have you ever performed with any House music artists/DJs that are from my hometown of Chicago? If so, who? If not, are there any particular Chicago artists or DJs that you would love to perform with?

DJ Matt Black: No, I haven’t as of yet performed with anyone from Chicago, but I would love to perform with Green Velvet – “Bruce sort it out”, Marcus Mixx, Marshall Jefferson, Farley and many more.

If you are asking what I would really like, I would love to see a “Legends of House” world tour. All the acts for one last time tour, before it’s too late. Nobody’s getting younger and this will help the artists and the House community. I know for a fact, many of the big artists today would buy tickets.

GO BANG! Magazine: Are there any events that you would love to participate in that are here in the States?

DJ Matt Black: Yes! I would love to come and mash out some nights in Chicago and hit up everywhere in the United States. Do a nice three to six-months, if possible.

GO BANG! Magazine: What is next on the agenda for Matt Black that our readers should be on the lookout for?

DJ Matt Black: Well, I may be at a rave near you soon (cough cough) Essex. Apart from that, I have a few tracks lined up and actually some wicked collaborations too. I’m trying to hit a release-a-month. So, we’ll see how that goes.

GO BANG! Magazine: The COVID-19 pandemic has caught the world off guard. How are you dealing with it?

DJ Matt Black: I have been personally put on a local lockdown and it’s hard, not only for myself but for everyone else too. The Entertainment industry has basically been destroyed. All gigs for 2021 have been canceled until further notice. It’s crazy!

GO BANG! Magazine: What would you like say to GO BANG! Magazine’s international audience across the world, which may not be familiar with you?

DJ Matt Black: Good morning, and in case I don’t see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and goodnight.
Peace out!

SoundCloud link:

YouTube Link to “2AM” track:

Follow DJ Matt Black on social media:
FB: @ThatDJMattBlack
IG: @DJ_Matt_Black
TW: @ThatDJMattBlack

Pierre A. Evans is a freelance writer of Entertainment, Music, Art, Culture, Fashion and Current Events, and previously for,,,, and, an author, singer/songwriter, actor, model, poet, dancer, and DJ. He is also the owner of Pinnacle Entertainment Productions. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and on Instagram


I am so sadden to hear the passing of my friend and motivator Mr. Mark Allen. From the day we met, in 2015, I was inspired by his passion for OUR PEOPLE and his wealth gaining process for Black people. I was inspired by him and attended some of his NATIONAL BLACK WALL STREET meetings and even spoke at one in particular, which featured Black entrepreneurs and entertainers. His heart and spirit was/is kind and generous. The HUMAN RACE has lost a great man and a powerful force, that will forever be missed.

Little did I know at the time, that he had a sister whom I was already cool with from the House music community Michele Allen-Marsh. Such a sweetheart from DAY 1! Michele you and your family have my deepest condolences and know that your brother has made an impact on the world with his life. He impacted my life tremendously.

May GOD comfort you, your family and friends, knowing that MARK’S WORK IS DONE!

ABOUT MARK: (1962 – 2020)
Now celebrating 40 “straight” years in public service on local, state, and national levels. One of the first community organizers to work with Barack Obama in Chicago over 20 years ago and throughout his local career. A veteran activist/journalist, in Who’s Who In Black Chicago and Rev. Al Sharpton called “one of Chicago’s legendary political activists.” former Associate editor of The South Street Journal Newspaper, Chairman Black Wall Street-Chicago, Board member, Chicago Gospel Music Heritage Museum, National Spokesman for National President of National Black Wall Street-USA, Chair of The Voter Restoration Project, and more! New offices located at 4655 South King Drive, Suite 203, Chicago, Illinois 60653 , Suite 203, Chicago, Illinois 60653 773-392-0165


Until we meet again….Rest in POWER my brutha!