It is the return of the Quick Six Series, where we interview an artist who has been putting in all kinds of work for their respected field, and doing so for quite some time. In previous Series we have covered artists from various locations across the U.S, but this time it’s different. We’re going to keep it local this time and bring your attention to an artist who has been spinning his way all over the Denver Metro area, as well as across the country working with some other very talented folks out of Colorado as well. Get ready to meet one of Denver’s hardest working DJ’s, the man with the plan, introducing….DJ Lazyeyez:
1. What inspired you to start deejaying, was there a specific song, album, time in your life, etc?
I would say my formative years as a teenager and high school formed my love of hip-hop and DJing. There’s a period of time in your adolescence when hanging out with your friends, roaming the streets, and being young all go together with a soundtrack to your life.
I was inspired to DJ in high school, because we used to have a high school DJ who DJ all of the sporting events, school dances, and pep rallies. I used to love how he could get the crowd hype and be the center of attention. On top of that, I’ve always been interested in beats. Even to this day, I’m horrible with lyrics, but I’m drawn to melodies and drum beats. Secretly I wish I was a producer, but DJing appeals not only to my love of music but also my love of gathering people together to have fun.
I like to say High school is where I got my start DJing, but college was when I got my PHD in Hip-Hop. I used to co-host, DJ, and manage the Basementalism radio show as well as general manage Radio 1190 at CU Boulder. I was able to watch all the top local DJs as well national DJs and learn from each one of them. I think this helped me be an overall quality DJ.
2. What has your time at The Solution been like since you joined, and what have you learned from that weekly showcase?
The Solution has always been a very special thing to me. The Solution was originally founded by DJ Low Key and Sounds Supreme. Even at the beginning I would just go as a fan and hang out. Partying at the Solution those first couple of years was a very special time in my life when I had just graduated college and was still living a young carefree life in my 20s. I joined the Solution sometime around 2009. DJ Low Key has always been someone I collaborated with even in college when we used to throw 18 and up club nights in Boulder (I was the co-promoter and Low Key was the DJ). So the fit was very natural. I think we have mutual respect in terms of DJing, work ethic, and quality Hip-Hop; plus, we’re homies. The Solution has helped me grow more as a party rocking DJ, but also as a good Hip-Hop DJ.
It’s very easy to get wrapped up in the club life and being a DJ, and you can easily fall into a very formulaic boring top 40 DJ. In all reality, anyone with some beat matching skills and a laptop can DJ whatever douche club / bar in downtown Denver or college town. I’ve been there, DJ Low Key has been there. At some point you have to question whether or not you’re really DJing and contributing something, or if you’re just a fancy jukebox. The Solution allows us to have our own crowd who appreciates quality music (not just Hip-Hop). I love the fact that we are able to get away with so many genres and off the radar tracks. I think a lot of DJs if they actually saw what we get to do for such a great crowd, would be jealous. We don’t have to play anything we don’t want.
On top of that, things like the Solution and Goodness have been able to create a sense of community and friendships that I especially appreciate. You can come to one of our events and meet a who’s who of Colorado Hip-Hop. It really is a golden age for us, and I keep that in mind every week we DJ.
3. How did you and The Reminders meet, and what led to your joining them for their shows/tours?
I’ve known Samir for a long time. I met him during my years running the Basementalism Radio show on Radio 1190 at CU Boulder. Even before that, I knew who he was through his old group Accumen. He was one of the first actual local groups I had ever heard of (and in Colorado Springs no less). I give credit to Samir and Black Pegasus because they were really some of the first to really do it and are still at the top of their game today (this is like 1998-99??). I had always respected what Samir did because not only was it good, but it was positive. I’ve always gravitated toward positive hip-hop, because of my experience at Basementalism. I think around 2009 – 2010 I still had a lot of connection with local venues. I think I hooked up the ReMINDers with a gig opening up for Mos Def which I also opened up for as a DJ. That night they asked if I could DJ for them, which I did. It actually went pretty smooth and they asked me to DJ for them at a De La Soul show. I think I also DJed for them at the Colorado DMC DJ Battle that year.. In my mind, DJing for them was my way of supporting them. We just all got along really well, and I think they trusted my experience as a DJ to back them up. There was never one moment where I became their DJ, I think we just kept rocking together and it made sense. One thing just kept leading to another and we just kept rocking. I’ve been very fortunate and thankful to be around them and grow from my experiences with them. They continue to amaze and inspire me.
4 .Name the most important knowledge you’ve gained from your time on the road doing shows, workshops, etc. and what would you pass on to those thinking about going on tour?
Some of the most important things I have learned is:
1) to realize that anything is possible. I’ve been DJing for over 15 years and I didn’t do an out of state show until only a few years ago. My dream was to DJ in NYC (birthplace of Hip-Hop) and coming from Colorado that seems impossible. Since then I’ve been able to travel all over the US, perform at some notable venues, and rock for large crowds.
2) Be professional. This music thing can be a blessing, but it’s also important to keep your professional sense. Being on point, on time, and networking is the only way to get from point A to point B.
3) Give more than you take. I’ve never been just a DJ. I’ve been a promoter, radio show host, interviewer, writer, and community organizer. You have to be a part of your community, contribute, build, and promote. Hip-Hop is not a hobby for me but a way of life. You have to do your part to be a steward and contribute to help this grow. All of your efforts will only come back to you in a positive way as long as what you do is positive and not selfish.
4) Be humble. It’s crazy to go someplace outside of Colorado and realize you can hold your own. But no matter what happens, there’s always someone out there working harder and better than you. Haters always hate, just keep your head down, work hard, and let your achievements speak for themselves.
5. Outside of Hip Hop and music in general, what do you do on your non-music time, are there other art forms that really grab your attention?
I love all forms of art: music, film, art. I wish I had more free time to paint and draw (which is actually my first passion). I love watching films and being inspired by a good movie or documentary. I would like to learn to play guitar which I started awhile ago but just haven’t found time to continue at.
6. Where can our readers find your work, and what new projects should we all keep our eyes peeled for?
People can follow me on Facebook at my fan page DJ Lazy Eyez, on Instagram at DJLazyeyez, Twitter at Lazyeyez, and on Soundcloud at DJ Lazy Eyez. I also have a website www.DJLazyeyez.com . I DJ every Friday night at The Solution at Meadowlark Bar (27th and Larimer – Denver) 9pm to 2am and more info atwww.DenverSolution.com
Other than that you can catch me rocking with the ReMINDers at a show near you and random gigs around the front range.