The influence of Black artists and musicians is present throughout all aspects of American culture. Our music continues to set trends on every entertainment platform while making an impact. But when mentioning black musicians, you must also acknowledge those who help drive the culture – DJs.
Throughout American history, Black disc jockeys did more than just spin records. They were influential voices and leaders of their communities for African-American listeners across the country. Not much has changed since time has passed. In 2022 DJs are still using their voices, platforms, and love for music to drive and influence the culture. Whether in clubs, radio stations, or on social media, these DJs create the perfect environment to celebrate black music.
Check out our list of DJs who are driving the culture and making their mark.
DJ P ForReal
New York City native Paul Huston Jr. — known professionally as DJ P ForReal — makes his home in Atlanta and is currently the official DJ on rapper Lil Uzi Vert’s nationwide tour. Huston started DJing when he was seven, but I didn’t take it seriously until he was 13. Before he starts his set, he does his research on the venue and the crowd he might potentially have. DJ P ensures that everyone is having as much fun as possible and pays attention to when the vibe changes. He’s performed at about 400 shows and been on over 200 festival stages bringing the perfect vibes to every location.
DJ Nyla Symone
A Pop and Hip-Hop connoisseur, audience engager, content developer, and one of New York’s youngest disk jockeys, DJ Nyla Symone has her hands in all the pots. A day in her life is spent curating vibes that uplift and inspire people through great music, fly fashion, and intriguing conversation. At 23, Nyla Symone has become the youngest media personality and DJ at Power 105.1, New York’s #1 radio station for Hip-Hop & R&B. Taking notes from Angie Martinez and Charlamagne the God, Nyla is working her way to becoming the hottest DJ/ Host in the tri-state and is demanding the respect she deserves.
Steven “DJ Stevo”
Stevo grew up in the entertainment industry, knowing he wanted a music career. He started in major DC clubs opening up for DJ Quicksilva in 2015, becoming a familiar face in nightlife. A year later, he became a two-time DJ of the Year and landed nine weekly shows. The hustle and a creative approach to crowd control separated him from others and established the “Stevo Way” of DJ’ing. His connection and pulse of the culture lead him to DJ’ing across the world, going on tour with Wale, and landing weekly residencies at different nightclubs in D.C. and Atlanta. Stevo is now the resident DJ at Miami’s hot spot, Victory restaurant.
Little Bacon Bear
Having strong roots in Prince George’s County, Little Bacon Bear can be found on-air on 93.9 WKYS FM throughout the week. Since starting with Radio One in 2017, she’s shown dedication to sharing her platforms with local and major artists. With segments like K.Y.S. Versus and the Crank Session, Bacon’s attention to the thriving D.M.V. music scene is apparent nightly on-air. She’s among the D.M.V.’s most coveted young DJs known for being at the forefront of music, nightlife, and culture. Ubiquitous in D.C.’s entertainment scene, she has spun and hosted for brands like Essence, B.E.T., Nike, and Youtube.
Infamous ATL DJ Infamous is more than just a DJ–he’s an entertainment powerhouse. One of Atlanta’s most sought-after DJs, he’s known worldwide for his mixtape collaborations and tapped by the most prominent promoters to DJ celebrity events at Atlanta’s most popular venues such as Reign Nightclub, Prive Lounge, Compound, and The Velvet Room. Infamous has toured the world and has collaborated on projects with some of urban music’s biggest artists, such as Ludacris, T.I., Jeezy, Kanye West, Jay-Z, 50 Cent, and RickRoss. Today, he tours with Ludacris and goes on tours of his own in addition to being a radio personality and producing and releasing music.
DJ Ferrari Simmons
With time comes wisdom, and with experience comes strength; Ferrari Simmons is the epitome of just that. Affectionately called “Rari,” he has solidified his place in the entertainment industry. Establishing relationships with a wide array of entertainers, most notable personalities, and executives and creating a solid presence in the community has allowed Ferrari to become an industry connector. In 2020 Ferrari was voted the Top 10 Radio DJ. in the country via Radio Facts. His love for music, eye for detail, and drive for success helped secure him the position as Music Director and the prime-time day slot on Streetz 94.5. Ferrari is heard live weekdays, 2 pm-6 pm in Atlanta, Ga. He can also be heard on The Baller Alert Show with Su Solo on BallerAlert.com and iHeart podcast weekly and on D.T.L.R. radio every Saturday.
DJ E Feezy
Miami-based hip-hop DJ E Feezy started his career from scratch, falling in love with the turntables when he was barely a teenager. The Cleveland-born Feezy secured his first gig at 12, spinning under the moniker Mach Six before he made his radio debut at Cleveland’s W.E.N.Z. at 14. After graduating from Alabama A&M and mixing for local Huntsville radio stations like W.E.U.P. and W.H.R.P., he moved to Memphis and then to Louisville, where he became the youngest music director in the country at the time at W.G.Z.B. Opportunities would lead him further south to Miami, where he established several club residencies and began promoting local hip-hop talent.