Photo credit: Facebook DJ Lynda Carter
You gotta respect Detroit’s music scene. Our history speaks for itself and our present day culture is ever-evolving. Male DJs seem to dominate the clubs and radio airwaves, but the female DJs are representing well— slaying behind and in front of the turntables. Highly sought after for premier events and venues, DJ Lynda Carter is doing wonderful things in, around and outside of the D. She’s often the deejay that saved your life last night and she’s a savvy entrepreneur.
Along with owning Mix Bricktown bar — known for its chill atmosphere, Carter is a licensed real estate broker and investor. Continuing her father’s legacy of entrepreneurship, she recently completed Goldman Sachs 10,000 small businesses program.
Rolling out was able to slice some time out of this Wonder Woman’s busy schedule. Check out the first in our “Fierce Female DJs of Detroit” series.
How did you get into being a DJ?
My uncle is a DJ. He was deejaying when I was coming up. After undergrad, I used to promote parties at the school. I decided to take some of the profits from my party promoting and I bought some turntables and a mixer on eBay. I just started practicing in my free time — I would practice like 3 or 4 days a week. It was originally a hobby, I never planned on playing in public. I basically taught myself. One day, a couple of my friends were like, “We just booked you for a party.” and I was like, “What? No.” they said, “We gon’ pay you [for] this.” and I was like, “OK, I guess y’all not gon’ let me tell you no.” So, I did the party and I rocked the party and then I started getting booked. I got booked for homecoming and other stuff. I started getting booked here in the city and then I started doing my own parties.
Where did you get your name?
I did radio for two years in college. I was thinking of superheroes. I wanted it to be a general name so anytime that I wanted to drop the “DJ” I could just keep the general name. It’s based on the television character of Wonder Woman.
What led you to open Mix?
I never wanted deejaying to be my only stream of income. I never wanted it to be the only thing that I do. If I stop deejaying tomorrow, I would still be able to pay my bills. I always wanted it to be a hobby — it just happens to be a hobby that I get compensated for. I earned that, I practiced for years. I never wanted to be 50 years old still deejaying. I’m gonna be retired at 50. I feel that part of my life’s calling is to see people have a good time — to enjoy themselves. To me it was a natural progression to go to the other side of the business. I wanted to own a cash business outside of the real estate. It was natural like, I’m already a DJ, why not own the establishment? Mix is different from a lot of other places. It’s for everyday people. I’m into servicing everyday people.
How do you thrive in this male-dominated industry? Have you had any opposition?
I don’t really pay it any attention. I focus on the people. If they are [oppositional], then they’re not successful with it. My focus is on the people and being a good DJ. So it can’t be denied. The fact that I’m a girl is a plus.
Do you have any mentors who helped you to evolve and grow?
DJ Surgeon, and as far as watching somebody who came before me it would be Stacey “Hotwaxx” Hale.
Do you have a playlist? How do you determine what you’re going to play?
It depends on the crowd. I try to have a diverse selection of music available at any given time. I play at the mall, which is a different type of vibe than at a club. I let the crowd determine which way [to] go. I feel them out and see what they’re into and then go with the flow — I also put my own spin on it. I wanna always keep it fresh.
So you have Mix, you do real estate, you do the deejaying. What are some other ventures that you have going on?
The Music Industry Academy. We teach foundational deejay mixing principles. We tech you how to practice. You’re not gonna walk outta there being Grand Master Flash. We teach you the foundation of the equipment, the basic mixing principles and how to practice correctly to become a better DJ. If you don’t practice on your own — you’re wasting your time. It’s six weeks [and we have] ages 12 and up in the class and we have a diverse array of people.
What piece of equipment is a must-have for your set to be successful?
I would say turntables. I love to play on turntables. Sometimes, you can get away with just one.
What is it you want the readers to know about?
I’ve sacrificed a lot. I stayed focused on the goal and I would not stop until it was done. I don’t know [any] other way to be. It’s takes a lot of time, dedication and sacrifice. When my homegirls were doing this, I was doing that. You’ve got to stay focused, stay humble, get the goal done. If you have a dream — chase it down and tackle it. Anything that I thought of that I wanted to do, I started working on doing it. Answer the call. You don’t wanna regret not giving it a shot.
How do you hone your craft?
Practice, research and watching others.
What’s on your bucket list?
To deejay on a national artist’s tour.