DJ showcase reveals unseen talent on campus

By Melina Orantes

Cal Poly Pomona’s Music Entertainment and Industry Club held its first disc jockey showcase on Thursday at the Games Room in the Bronco Student Center.

John Lares, a fourth-year music industry studies student and MEIC president, planned the event with his club two months in advance. He and his organization were focused on giving DJs on campus, which aren’t always in the limelight, some exposure.

“I saw just DJs coming out at U-Hour, but I wasn’t seeing them get enough attention,” said Lares. “I decided to have a special event just for DJs to showcase their abilities so that people that come and watch will maybe want to hire them for house parties.”

Lares, who also goes by his DJ name LQOZ, wanted to give DJs such as Ocean Roulette, Fadi, DJ Frankie, Jacob Gago and himself a chance to flaunt their talent. They had people dancing, heads bobbing and some gamers up and moving.

MEIC is keen about showcasing student talent on campus. Many of its events have been tailored to singer-songwriters. The club has already held a couple open mics at Innovation Brew Works. However, it noticed that DJs on campus were not getting enough recognition.

The DJs who performed were students that come from musical and business backgrounds. They played a variety of songs from remixes of Fetty Wap’s “My Way” to original compositions.

The night started off with Ocean Roulette, who has performed a few times on campus. Each DJ slowly transitioned out of his or her set and onto the next.

The DJ that initiated the event was given the task of drawing a crowd.

“Getting an audience to dance is a pretty challenging thing, especially when you don’t know who is coming in. ” You kind of have to read crowds,” said Lares. “Other types of music people go to see that kind of music, versus a DJ who has to read off of the audience and kind of guess what they like, and that in itself is an art form.”

It’s become obvious, from what you hear on the radio and around you, that electronic music is one of the most popular genres of music. Festivals such as the Electric Daisy Carnival, Beyond Wonderland, HARD Summer and HARD Day of the Dead bring in massive crowds that want to hear DJs play their favorite songs.

Whether you are a DJ that specializes in remixing Billboard’s Top 100 or you produce your own beats, there is an advantage, or sometimes disadvantage, to the art form. Lares mentioned the factor of having to read an audience. If a crowd is not responding to one song, a DJ has the ability to win it back.

“With DJs there is more of a surprise element: they can just toss is any song they want and mix it anyway they want, and it’s like ‘wow, I’ve never heard that remix before,'” said Roya Bassiri, a fourth-year entertainment marketing student and MEIC’s promotion officer.

Even the DJs at the event were moving and dancing on stage, which showed how much fun they were having.

MEIC has more events planned for the rest of the year, and it is hoping to hold more DJ showcases in the future.

“I wish there were more events like this on campus were done more often. There is not enough music events or DJ events on campus, ” said Alonso Franco, a fourth-year technology and operations management student.

MEIC will continue providing a platform for students’ music to be heard, and the DJ showcase was just an expansion of its mission.

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Melina Orantes / The Poly Post

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