Upcoming local disk jockey (DJ) RayDiz (real name Rayhaan Jassat) is set to represent Harare at the upcoming Global Miller Music Tour in Las Vegas this month. This follows his victory at the national Miller SoundClash competition held at the Grain Lounge Bar and Pariah State last month.
RayDiz will compete at the Global Miller Music Competition fighting to be recognised as the best in the world. He will also be part of the Miller Music Tour running from August 22 to 26 where he will join other DJs from around the world.
Harare News caught up with RayDiz ahead of his trip. Here’s what he had to say:
Who is RayDiz?
RayDiz is a Harare born young man who was raised in Braeside. I began DJ’n about a decade ago in 2004. I started playing at events in the United Kingdom where I was studying at Totton College for my Arts & Design degree. Besides music I am also a graphic and fashion designer. I run my own label – 729 Apparel. I have had the privilege of having artists like (SA rappers) Khuli Chana and Reason wear my designs as well as several local artists like Simba Tagz and Tehn Diamond.
Describe your journey as an artist?
My journey as an artist is still ongoing. Music has always been a massive passion of mine and I feel I am only getting started.
What has been your biggest challenge?
My biggest challenges were faced when I was coming up as an artist. The Zimbabwean music industry is not as diverse as I feel it should be. I struggled to get my name out there and earn a decent wage from music. Another issue I have faced is the eclectic and diverse tastes of Zimbabwean party goers. I always have to adjust my style to ensure I please my audience.
What has been your greatest achievement during the course of your career?
I have had a few achievements in my short career, from the privilege of being the first local DJ to perform at the Big Brother House in South Africa to being the first local DJ to perform at London’s world famous Ministry of Sound. But I think my biggest achievement to date was winning the Miller SoundClash. I have the chance to DJ with some of my idols like Hardwell and Tiesto in Las Vegas.
What prompted you to enter the Miller DJ competition?
I have always prided myself as a battle DJ so when I received the invitation I jumped at the chance.
Tell us about your preparations for and during the competition?
Once I received the rules for the SoundClash competition I spent hours in my room mastering my mixes and sets. I believed I was going to win and I did everything I could to actualise those thoughts. Thankfully they became a reality. During competition days I never took off my headphones and immersed myself into the music.
How do you feel now that you won the sole seat to represent Zimbabwe in Las Vegas, rubbing shoulders with the world’s top performers?
I feel very honoured for this opportunity; this is very big for me. I have been working for years and I finally have the opportunity to take my career to the next level by representing my country on the global stage. Rubbing shoulders with the world’s top performers is a dream come true. I hope to become a DJ on their level someday.
Besides the Miller show what else do you have on your plate music-wise?
Well I am also trying to develop as a performing artist. I just completed the video for my song with O-25 titled She Loving The Crew. I released the song late last year and it has received a lot of love from local radio stations. I am an ambassador for this year’s Shoko Festival. I also have a song with Smiley that I will be dropping soon. Along with that I have rotating residencies at Skyy Bar, Mekka and H2O.
Any plans after LA?
I have a goal to take over Africa within the next 18 months.
How can people access your music?
People looking to access my music can get it via my social media pages or the Soundcloud website. I upload a mix every month to my Soundcloud account.
Any advice for fellow young artists who want to make it?
If you have a dream, follow it. Music in Zimbabwe has not always been a lucrative career choice, but I have managed to find a way to survive and live a fulfilling life.
Support local music and lookout for the new line of 729 Apparel!