Have you ever had the pleasure of being in the lab with DJ Nabs? The globe-trotting spin wizard got his start as a mix-show DJ. Hailing from Durham, North Carolina, he trekked to Atlanta to become the resident DJ at Club Kaya’s legendary Old School Sundays. He produced a live album, In The Lab With DJ Nabs: The Live Album, which featured live appearances by Big Daddy Kane, Wyclef Jean and Kurtis Blow.
Here, rolling out’s Jerry Clark Sr. chats with the Mad DJ who toured the world with the King of Pop Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, Ludacris and Ciara.
What is your mission?
My ultimate mission as a DJ is to inspire and leave behind a body of work (live performances, mixes, remixes, scratch solos, documentaries and stories) that will hopefully be studied for generations to come. I also want to show that DJs are leaders even though we are often presented as the guy in the back.
Share your career highlights, including tours and records.
1992 – Michael Jackson Dangerous Tour touring with Kris Kross,
1994 – Solo Appearance on the “Arsenio Hall Show”
1998 – Releasing my own album In The Lab with DJ Nabs on Columbia Records
Introducing Ludacris via my radio show and album
2009 – Releasing Diary Of A Mad DJ
2010 to 2015 – Touring Internationally to Taiwan, France, Turkey, Greece, and Romania to name a few as a Solo DJ act
2015 – Becoming the first radio personality/ DJ on Boom 97.5/102.9 Classic Hip Hop Radio in Atlanta
Name an artist to look out for. Tory Lanez
Name the style of sets performed. Many styles, turntablist, club DJ, stage performer and radio mix show.
What is DJ creativity? Telling a story with the records while taking the listener on a journey.
Top five artists: MJ, Run DMC, Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Kanye West
Top three producers: (Hip Hop) Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, Swizz Beatz
Social Media – Role of DJ: Curator of music, authority on emotional connection between the music and the audience.
Top three places to DJ: Atlanta, Istanbul and Germany.
What are the top 10 songs on your playlist now?
1.”California” – Colonel Loud
2. “Panda” – Desiigner
3. “Say It” – Tory Lanez
4. “Work” – Rihanna
5. “Formation” – Beyoncé
6. “We Be In The City” – Young Dro
7. “Look at My Dab” – Migos
8. “Jane In The Jungle” – Kilo
9. “Down In The DM” – Young Gotti
10. “Hotline Bling” – Drake
10 songs and artists that are a staple in your set:
1. Any song with the “Bam Bam” riddim (murder she wrote, cupcakes)
2. “Before I let Go” – Frankie Beverly & Maze
3. “Harlem Shake” – Baauer
4. “Hypnotize” – Biggie
5. “Blow The Whistle” – Too Short
6. “Public Service Announcement” – JayZ
7. Michael Jackson (many songs)
8. Beyoncé – (many songs)
9. “Uptown Funk “- Mark Ronson
10. Future (many songs)
1. “Move it Like Beyonce” – Robotic beatbox
2. “Do It For The ‘Gram” – DJ Nabs & Beestroh
3. “Bumaye” – Major Lazer
4. Turn Down For What – Lil Jon
5. Michael Jackson (many songs)
6. Rihanna (many songs)
7. Beyoncé (many songs)
8. “Uptown Funk “- Mark Ronson
9. Kanye West (many songs)
10. JayZ (many songs)
Tune in to Radio One, Atlanta’s classic hip-hop station, Boom 97.5 /102.9 FM to catch DJ Nabs in the afternoons, weekdays 3 to 7 p.m.