DJ JTorcher: Cruise Control
Interview By: Tyrone Davis (Editor/Publisher)
Quick recap for those who haven’t seen you in awhile or may not be aware of you. Give us a little background info on yourself.
I’m originally from Indianapolis and have been DJ’ing for over 20 years. Throughout my career, I’ve worked with a lot of artists who ended up becoming well known and/or signed to major record labels. I now travel the world as a DJ on cruise ships and produce music as well.
How did you get into DJ’ing and what made you want to be a DJ vs. a rapper?
I’ve always looked up to DJ Jazzy Jeff and always loved that art form. At one point I started to rap and used to write a lot but I really got pulled into DJ’ing because of the instruments I used to play.
You won an award a few years back. Tell us about that. How did you feel getting it?
Yes, I won the “Midwest Legends Award” in 2011, presented by Nerve DJs. The feeling was indescribable because I was actually at a point where I wanted to quit. That kept me going. I was both surprised and happy to be recognized.
A lot of people that live in slower markets feel like they have to move to get ahead. You relocated a few years back. What made you leave Indianapolis and what is the difference between Indiana and Arizona?
It was time to break the same repetitive cycle and make a move. I needed to take a chance on myself. It is a big difference in a lot of ways. The music itself and the music scene is different. From a business standpoint and the market itself, it’s not as cutthroat and everything is not on top of each other. Out west, DJs are kings and are well respected.
Even though you relocated, the Midwest overall is a great place to be on the entertainment side. What makes the Midwest different than any other coast?
I think the Midwest has the best talent but everyone in the Midwest is stuck on wanting to be the first to blow in their cities or they want to move to ATL. Everybody out this way just does their thing and supports each other.
What exactly is “blending”?
It’s basically “beat matching”, which is a Midwest style. We’ll take an acapella and mix it with it’s original beat and whatever beat we decide to add with it.
Networking is very important in any field where you want to get ahead. Who have been some of the most memorable people you have met so far?
I’ve met so many, it’s hard to list but I would have to say Rocko and Kia Shine. They were the most memorable because they do a lot on the business side as well as rap.
In your opinion, what are some things that would keep an aspiring artist from “making it”?
The #1 thing is worrying about what the next man is doing. Do your thing and just keep grinding. You will get so much further.
Prior to working on the ship, you hadn’t traveled out of the country yet. What have you learned about other cultures, architecture, weather, etc. while abroad?
Once you’ve actually seen the world for yourself vs. what has been shown to you via the media, it gives you a different perspective on a lot.
Out of each country you’ve visited, which has been the most ________ and why?
A: Fun – Bermuda was just, “Party, Party, Party!”
B: Life Changing – Australia it was amazing place to be and the food is amazing
C: Disappointing – Fiji cause they only show you the good and its different then what you see.
Being that you are in other countries playing music, what are you spinning for them?
It’s crazy. The world loves Hip Hop, especially the 1990s and 2000s music.
What is life like on a cruise ship for months at a time? Break down a typical day?
It really depends on the ship and itinerary. Most of the time I have a DJ set in the afternoon at the pool and then maybe one in the main lobby and the nightclub. In between I usually sleep, watch movies or make a few beats. It’s pretty chill during the day. The nightclub is where it gets crazy.
What do you do for fun during these trips when you’re not working?
I make beats, watch TV, play video games or go out in port. It’s just like being at home but the countries change. I’ve been to the actual movies in different countries.
Aside from concerts, parties, and in your case, a cruise ship, is the DJ dead? The internet has seemed to give you guys some problems. What’s your take?
The DJ isn’t dead but it is a lot harder, especially if your are someone who is not established. Also, you have to be able to provide a service or have other skills to go along with DJ’ing.
With that being said, is it important to be multi-talented these days? What else do you do?
Yes, aside from the beats, I own my own clothing line called, “DJ Life” and custom T-shirt service. I also have a DJ service and I even wait tables some times. That’s a paycheck everyday when I’m home.
Who are your Top 5 favorite producers who are also DJs?
In no particular order: DJ Khaled, DJ Mustard, Calvin Harris, Dr. Dre and myself, lol.
I always make jokes about you becoming Isaac from “The Love Boat”. How much longer would you like to do this? Where do you hope to be 5 years from now?
I’m not sure. I’m still checking things off on my bucket list and ultimately, I’ll stay home when I can make more money on land than I do out here.
How can people contact you for business?
They can contact me on social media @Jtorcher
or at www.jtorcher.com.
Any last words?
Don’t let anyone tell you can’t or stand in your way!
I’m also looking for artist to work with and build something together.
Here is a special coupon code for my beat store on www.jtorcher.com for 50% off. Use the code “T4S50OFF”. It will work for all leases and exclusives. Let’s work!