My mom put me in piano lessons when I was 12, and I lasted about 3 sessions before I dropped out. My piano teacher was 93 and her breath smelled terrible. For those of you out there that stuck it out, those skills will come in handy if you decide you want to DJ; however, not required, says Calvin Morrissey, known by his stage name as Bobby Slay.
Bobby’s mom made him play piano too, and he’s now very grateful to understand musical notes and apply them in the music that he layers. Bobby’s love of music and concerts finally motivated him to one day say hey, I’d like to play tunes for crowds. So he bought a controller about 1.5 years ago, and today Bobby has steady gigs around NYC. So, how’d he do it?
As I said, he did a bit of research, and bought a controller. A controller is a DJ set-up, all-in-one platform. So that he could fast track his learning, he also enrolled in a 30 day course. Bobby knew that he was immediately addicted because a 6 hour session felt like 10 minutes to him.
When Bobby said that to me, I thought… wow, I have to find that. That has to be it. I don’t think there’s anything in my life where 6 hours feels like 10 minutes, except for maybe when I watched Season 1 of Homeland.
Bobby holds a deep passion for DJ’ing, of that it is imminently clear. Every morning before work, he wakes up at 7AM to practice, remarking “why wouldn’t you start your day with something you’re passionate about?”
When I asked what his favorite part of DJ’ing is, he said it’s getting people to dance. And I get that. Have you ever played a song at a party and everyone coos in satisfaction? That is a magnificent feeling .. now multiply that by 1,000.
Reading the room is a vital part of DJ’ing, and if you can successfully do that, then you’re on your way to boogie paradise. So if you’re wondering if Bobby has quit his day job and is now DJ’ing full-time, the answer is not yet. But he did have a brief hiatus from the 9-5 where he got to taste what it would feel to spend all day working on what you’re passionate about, and he now knows that that is the end goal, and it’s making him work harder towards it.
Until then, the NYC hustle remains: paychecks with a side of passion.
Check out Bobby's tunes on Soundcloud: