Krip Hop Nation Listens to Deaf DJ's & Deaf Jams


Tiny - Posted on 01 March 2011

Author: 
Leroy Moore/Illn n Chillin

DJ Supalee SPinning

DJ Supalee Spinning

Monday, February 1, 2010;

Krip-Hop Nation & DJ Supalee Listen to Vibrations

When Krip-Hop was first launched we had The Helix Boyz on the radio. At that time The Helix Boyz were one of the first Hip-Hop duos that were and are Deaf in Hip-Hop Also I learned from Fred M. Beam of the Wild Zappers, a Black Deaf dance troupe from D.C., that Deaf people had their own music underground called Deaf Rave in the UK and DIP in the US. From there not being Deaf I continued to let Deaf musicians educate me and I found out here in the USA there are Def Familia Entertainment, Def United Edutainment and many more organizations/groups providing a stage for Deaf musicians including Hip-Hop artists. Through my continued research I found an article on DJ Supalee of Brooklyn, NY. He is a Deaf DJ and his father is also a DJ but not Deaf. I was so interested in his story that I decided to ask if I could interview him. Below is that interview and a song I wrote about his father and him.

1) Krip-Hop Nation – DJ Supalee tell us how did you get into Djing

DJ Supalee - I started out boxing with the influence of my stepfather. My parents were divorced and she was married to him. After a few stints fighting in school and coming home bruised, somehow my father got encouraged to get me into his hobby (djing).

2) Krip-Hop Nation – Knowing that your father is a professional DJ how did he react when you showed interested in Djing

DJ Supalee - Its not like I jumped in and told him "I want to be a dj". He threw some equipment at me and told me to try it, he taught me how to understand sound frequency by showing me how to use a crossover. I still remember it like yesterday, he was frustrated at first cuz I didn't know how to take the bass off the midranges. He improvised by telling me to put my hand on the speaker; if I feel no bass then I'm doing all right. The next step was blending the music and I normally practiced that with my hearing partners. We used make tapes in my bedroom blasting the music real loud. I had like 4cerwin vega subwoofers in my bedroom. Then I would listen to my own tapes and that's how I was able to improve.

3) Krip-Hop Nation – Tell us about Deaf Rave in the US and Deaf artists in Hip-Hop.

DJ Supalee - I've never formally met deaf rave in person, but spoke to them a lot online, we talked about doing something big together to spark it internationally but was never able to get the funding together cuz of the traveling expenses. With a little bit of sponsorship, we would be able to accomplish a lot. I've worked with deaf artist all over the USA: Sean forbes, locofunk, GHE, Helix Boyz, wild zappers, dancers, DJ, singers from all corners of this country. Our biggest struggle is trying to do what we love to do and be paid for it. These are some very talented people and just like me, we can be driven by support of our followers.

4) Krip-Hop Nation – Why did you start your organization, Deaf United Entertainment?

DJ Supalee - First off, let me put it on record that I did not founded D.U.E. I actually joined a group of deaf guys who founded the business in Texas. I've always known that with a group effort, were able to accomplish anything. I saw a group if young motivated deaf people with a dream of providing entertainment to deaf patrons worldwide. I joined and helped pushed the business national. Our first national event was in Las Vegas, then after that we did, New York, DC, Florida, Indiana, St Louis, Texas and so on. I felt that this country needed something for people like myself to get exposed. We needed more role models or at least a symbol to encourage us that there are things out there for people who are deaf, blind, crippled or disabled in any way. We had a great run without a single sponsor. At the end, the cost of a large event has just gotten too high and we had to slow down a little bit.

5) Krip-Hop Nation – Is there a movement of Deaf Hip-Hop artists? If so give us so history.

DJ Supalee – I hosted Supafest back in the year 2000 at Gallaudet University as a move to get myself known. Before that, there were small just deaf house parties. Back then there were no sidekick pagers or blackberries for us to keep in touch. If we wanted to reach another deaf person we would call with a TDD device or meet them at a social gathering to catch up. Victor Medina who founded Locofunk at NTID inspired me. This event was our "Saturday night fever" he showcased dance shows and had some sign songs and I was his DJ. When victor graduated I had dreams to do something of my own because I knew I had something that was rare. I took over and put together SUPAFEST at the most popular deaf college in the world during Homecoming and then followed up with my biggest event at NTID. That was the event that jumps started my solo career and sparked the movement of deaf entertainment. After that, everyone started doing his or her thing. Deaf rappers and more djs came out, more folks started performing and things were great. Then I started hearing about things happening overseas which got me real curious.

6) Krip-Hop Nation – It’s so hard to find disabled woman in Hip-Hop. Can you tell us your experience finding Deaf women that are Djs like DJ Star Baby?

DJ Supalee – Betina Washington a.k.a Dj Starbaby is a native from Chicago. She used to come to my events and watch me dj half the night. She became inspired and wanted to become a dj also. She started off by getting herself some equipments and music. When she put that together she told me she was trying to become a dj. I flew over there to help her learn the ropes and I even djed at an event with her in chicago, When she was ready I hosted "Deaf City" at Fur Nightclub in Dc. she came and did her thing. We had over 3,000 people in that building. She's the first female deaf dj in the world.

7) Krip-Hop Nation – I know there has always been a separation between the Deaf community and the rest of the disabled community, do you think we can come together in music like your organization and Krip-Hop Nation and how?

DJ Supalee - oh yes. Definitely, with deaf people, the only key challenge is understanding music and feeling that flow. I had visions of having hundreds or even thousands of people with disabilities being entertained at a club or some major event. It can happen and it WILL happen.

8) Krip-Hop Nation – What was your view on how the Hip-Hop community and media dealt with Foxy Brown losing and regaining her hearing?

DJ Supalee - Man, when I herd she lost her hearing, I was really trying to reach out to her, to talk to her, you know, let her know what I went through and wonder if she was willing to blend. Foxy Brown and me actually grew up in the same area in Brooklyn. When I herd she got that cochlear implant. I cant say that I wouldn't encourage it because she lost her hearing at a really late stage of her life so it seem more of a move out of desperation. I'm not sure if she would ever be the same. I've never met her so I can’t really say, but I noticed her music hasn't been out there lately. I hope she's reading this and will consider the opportunity to look into what were trying to do. When you loose your ability to do something you're used to, you have to learn to adjust. Even if you do, things wont be the same, at least for most of us.

9) Krip-Hop Nation – If you had a chance to meet with music agent, mainstream Hip-Hop artist or an editor of a Hip-Hop magazine, what would you tell them?

DJ Supalee – I would tell them this. "Instead of spending millions of dollars on a contract for some hot shot new artist that's going to give us the same thing, try putting half of that down on this movement and watch what happens. I'll bet my career on it, you will be impressed."

10) Krip-Hop Nation – What are you and your organization goals in 2010?

DJ Supalee - I have big goals for 2010. I'm hosting a summer bash in nyc. Will provide entertainment for people with disability this fall at south seaport in august and I have a deaf cruise coming up this November. I'm still trying to do that new years eve party in London. I’m also going on a few trips to California. I'm hoping this decade will be one of the biggest positive decades of our generation with so many changes going on. D.U.E is coming to DC in November and I got a feeling that's going to be HOT also. And last but not least, I'm hosting ASL poetry at busboys and poets on the last Friday of every month. This is a place where you can watch people do sign language songs, recite and create poems and even do a short Skit for those who want to write plays. Email me if you like more info on any of these events.

11) Krip-Hop Nation – How can people get in touch with you?

DJ Supalee – best way to reach me is my myspace and facebook page or my email address (djsupalee@aol.com). I check that everyday. Be sure to title your subject line cuz I get a lot of spammers.

12) Krip-Hop Nation – Last words.

DJ Supalee - I just want to tell those who are reading this to invest into our community by subscribing to i.d.e.a.l magazine. You don't need to be deaf to attend a deaf event. If you're disabled in any way, don't allow yourself to become the victim. There are millions of people out there looking for people like you. So come on out and make yourself known.

DJ Dad Deaf Son

Verse 1

Dad mixing son feeling the beat
Small hand in big hand
Both on turntables music fuses 2 generations into 1
ASL & spoken nothing like dad & son

Chorus

DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood
DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood

Verse 2

Older younger
Grooving off each other’s vibes
Flowing bodies music like blood
Pumping through veins like a bass drum

Chorus

DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood
DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood

Bridge

Son took off into Deaf Raves
One hand on the deck other in the air doing da wave
Till death do em apart
DJ Dad Deaf Son always be connected by rhythm in the heart

Keeps em alive
As they kick
A funky mix
At the club every night

Verse 3

Hear or feel it
DJ… DJ…Dad…Dad
Deaf… Deaf… Son… Son…
Same… Same… Blood… Blood…

Chorus

DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood
DJ Dad Deaf Son
Same blood

PNN RADIO

Sign-up for POOR email!