In 2013, I started working with DJ Artistic who was my mentor who represents No Suckers DJs and San Diego’s Best DJs. I had always had this idea to play with DJing but I had never pursued it. When I decided to try and gain the knowledge of DJing, it was for a backup plan because at the time I was managing Real J Wallace. I thought it would be a great thing to know how to DJ just in case he needs a DJ or just in case I want to learn how to utilize the equipment so there would be no issue on stage and I can figure out any issues myself. That’s where it all started. I would practice on weekends with DJ Artistic. He would throw me in a room so I could practice by myself. I started off on turntables, which was really fun to get a feel for it with the records. From there, I was trying to balance the management and DJing for myself.
When I was learning DJing, it was with the purpose of doing it so I can gain the knowledge. I started getting serious with it in 2015. Things started to take off for me when I said yes to my first gig. I had always been a person to be in my head all the time – having all these doubts and fear of not being good enough and not wanting to oversaturate the market. I had always loved music and I’ve always been involved with music, whether it was promo, photography, doing media at concerts or shows, but it was 2015 where I said yes to my first DJ gig. From there, that’s when it started to make a path for me and opened my eyes to see that this was for me.
When I got my first gig it was at Bridges in the SDSU area. It was a nerve wrecking experience but it was fun! Then within the next few days I had another gig at Bluefoot and that’s how it all started. My favorite gig so far has been a NYE party at the Echoplex in LA. That was with a company called Colors Worldwide who do events called R&B Only. I usually get so nervous with events, but for this show I just let go, felt free, and had fun. I think the environment is what made it feel so comfortable, especially the person I was DJing with who was super welcoming and made me laugh – because I love being around people who can make me laugh!
For this next year I definitely want to get my business together so I can put myself out there to be able to get more opportunities. Things like creating the logo I want for myself, a website, creating an EPK, and to grace more stages in different cities and states. I had the experience to get out and go to Cleveland for a friend’s event and that really opened my eyes to see that I can really do this outside of my own city as I listened to these other DJs. It’s not impossible. In my mind, I always try and see the light at the end of the tunnel and when I’m put in these situations where I get to see DJs outside of their city, I can see myself reaching that goal to play outside of the city and travel.
I want to be an entrepreneur to the fullest. It’s always been my goal as a little kid, but it’s been so confusing at the same time because I’ve always tried to figure it out thinking what kind of business I want to have and what kind of business I’d like to open. I’ve always loved being embedded in community and giving back to the music side of things as I support artists I feel like deserve to shine. That’ where the management and promotion came in because I wanted to help people to be heard and to be seen.
Incorporating all of those things into a business is all about HOW, and I feel like DJing would be the vehicle that I use to invest back into myself with the things I want to do and love to do. Events are something I want to do, to coordinate something music related and put on different shows. I want to continue helping people and supporting people in their journeys as well. I think that’s the thing that gives me the most life! When we get to sit down and have conversations with people about their passion, I don’t know why, but it feeds my soul. So giving back in that way is definitely important to me as well.
I put management on hold because I had forgotten all about myself. I was giving a lot of myself, and that wasn’t the problem, it was more so me needing to protect myself and refocus to remind myself to pour some of that same effort into my own glass. It has definitely brought me into a place where I needed to reconnect with myself and relearn how to fill my own cup and put happiness into my own hands because I felt like that was given away. That’s where DJing came in. I didn’t want to let the negative situations define me, I wanted to pick myself back up and that was the outlet I used to get myself back on my feet. It gave me a sense of security doing this on my own. I still have great relationships with those I’ve managed and they understood the transition I needed to make.
It has honestly caught me off guard how much I’ve been able to accomplish because I know I’ve built relationships throughout the years with the people I’ve been able to work with which has definitely paid off but I have never thought I would be able to DJ in the places I have been. The growth has been crazy to me.
I’ve definitely grown in my confidence, behind the booth, and being able to push through the emotions I feel to get through a gig has definitely changed. The nerves have definitely come down. I’ve grown as a person, being able to see the big picture and be patient with myself. I’m hard on myself so being able to be patient and encourage myself more has definitely grown. Like wanting to quit or give up but I’ve grown past that.
I remember wanting to move to New York not too long ago, now I want to be bicoastal, be able to be here in San Diego and New York. I went with my intuition to stay here and I want to give San Diego a part of myself so I can take more of it in and help create this scene.
I think San Diego is on the rise, people are getting out of their shell and wanting to be seen and heard, and actually putting in the work. Let’s stop complaining and whining about what San Diego is not, and actually put in the work to create what it should be. I’m so proud of this city regardless because we have every opportunity just like any other city and any other state and as human beings. Just don’t deny yourself. It’s great if you want to leave the city and grow out there, but I really do respect the people who are still here and grinding it out.
This organization I’m a part of called She is Soul, I would say they are an inspiration to me. All of the women I’ve worked with, we all have common interests through music, politics, and community. Being able to work with them in providing a platform for women to express themselves through art, social justice, activism, music, then all of these women coming from different walks of life thriving in their area is amazing. They’re all women who inspire me who I get to work and do events with.
DJ Artistic, my mentor, is also one of my main inspirations. He works so hard and I’m inspired him DJing, how he runs his business, and how he maneuvers and is well respected. As far as other people are concerned, I’m inspired by DJ Battlecat who is also a producer, but his DJing is incredible, then DJ Jazzy Jeff, and the list goes on and on. For those who inspire my sound, Illmatic, Nas, Jay Z, WuTang, and definitely 90s hip hop – when I have the opportunity to play 90s hip hop and R&B, that’s the best because I get to create that nostalgic feeling people get when they listen to that music.
We are so happy to have connected with Dauché! She is doing so many amazing things in the San Diego community sharing her art through music and we couldn’t be more inspired by her! She shared with us her story of finding her journey through DJing by being surrounded by music and learning tricks of the trade through her mentor. With her heart for community and giving back, she reminds us how important it is to invest your time in something you love as well as something that will help build other people up as well.
She has a lot in store in the next few months, with R&B Only, her involvement with the Teen Girl Expo spinning for their luncheon, working with the David Harp Foundation, and a pop up shop called Loud Thoughts, she puts in the work! And because we’re a big fan for what she’s doing in our San Diego community, it’s only fitting to share that she’ll be one of the DJs spinning at our Coffee & Convos x Olukai event on Saturday, January 21st! Be sure to keep up with her and see where she’s sharing her sounds next, because with her radiating smile, she’ll be sharing that same beautiful spirit through her music!