Erick Jay_Credits_Rafael Berezinski
Erick Jay_Credits_Rafael Berezinski

In 2016, Erick Jay (Erick Garcia) entered the history of American DJing as the first Latin American (and Brazilian) to consecrate himself, in the same year, victorious in the two biggest DJ championships in the world, the DMC World and the IDA World Technical Category.

Today, at 35 years old, the DJ represents Brazil in the most varied championships around the world. The most recent was the Oceania Grand Championship, which took place in Auckland, New Zealand.

In addition to the competitions, Jay serves as the show's official DJ. brothers and mines, a show with an audience whose main objective is to televise themes related to the culture of hip-hop, rap, funk, reggae and samba. On the air for 25 years, the show directed by Marcelo Costa is part of TV Cultura and is shown every Saturday at 20:15 pm.

The DJ is also part of the Laboratório Fantasma project, a collective that produces and sells clothing that, among many things, promotes hip-hop artists and the urban-peripheral scene. "THE Kamau it's part of the Fantasma Laboratory, so when the collective closes a show or event, I play along. I've been with Kamau since 2008. It's a great partnership”, she says.

How did DJ Eric Jay come about? 

Well, I started very early, in 1991, when I was 11 years old. I started going to dances black e house of the time. But it was in 1996, when I went to the Radial Project. I would stand near the DJ booth, see how they ran the dance floor and I was in awe. It was there that I started to get interested in the art of DJing and years later I started playing at friends' parties, at weddings, etc.

I've always been connected to music. He came from home, when my father listened to his songs. At the time, he had a small team of DJs with some friends. My father had several K7 disks and tapes. I grew up listening to the songs he liked.

The program brothers and mines is an icon of TV Cultura programming, how did you get to him? 

I was invited by Rappin Hood, due to the death of our big brother, DJ Primo, in 2008 and I'm there to this day. For me, it is a great honor to be part of the only program dedicated to the Hip Hop culture of South America and perhaps the world. Production gives me a lot of freedom to do my job in the best way possible.

Being on the show was one of the best things that happened in my life, it changed everything. The program gave me more visibility, I met several special people. It is a great pride to be part of the family brothers and mines.

Many areas are in crisis. As a DJ, do you feel that the crisis has arrived for music as well? What is your assessment of the São Paulo scene? 

Who is in crisis are the people who don't know how to differentiate good music from bad. Brazil is very rich in its musical culture, but traditional media, most of the time, does not show the good things, but what “they” choose and that is not always something cool or that will add up. The São Paulo and Brazilian scene are very good, lots of bands, very talented independent musicians who just need opportunities.

Speaking of your titles, how was the experience during DMC World and IDA World? How did you feel when you found out you had won both titles? 

It was awesome! Two sensational moments in my life, two world titles in different institutions and still being the first in South America to achieve this feat [in the same year]. When I won the DMC (Disco Mix Club), the chip only dropped 3 days later. The repercussion was incredible, I never imagined being so dear. Seeing people I'm a fan of sharing my photos, calling me, some emotional… It was awesome. At IDA – (Internacional DJ Association), it was also very good. It was a little more difficult due to lack of sponsorship, but extremely motivating thanks to my friends and partners who helped me a lot.

Being a black DJ, I imagine I have faced racism on many occasions. How do you seek to deal with prejudice? Do you have a specific case you would like to share? If yes, feel free! 

Unfortunately, we still have to deal with that. As Criolo would say, “some prefer to die when seeing a black man win”. When it comes to prejudice, Brazil is an expert. If black is a player, singer or artist, he won't be like the others. I suffered with prejudice in 2012, in Poland, when I went to represent Brazil for the first time at the IDA World. People looked at me with contempt at the airport, at the market. I confess that I was even a little surprised, because the history of Poland was marked with prejudice and discrimination as well. But I was not shaken. In 2016, I came back and it was different. Fortunately. As I am a black Brazilian, I am already used to it and each prejudice I suffered was another motivation for my achievements.

And finally, but always important to remember, what differentiates a producer from a DJ?

As the name implies, producer only produces songs, does not do any kind of performance, etc. Most DJs produce and play because they've mastered the art of turntables.


1 comment

  1. Erick Jay always representing the culture, a great icon in the scene, an example to be followed, congratulations.

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