In RESPECT. Mag, we make it our main priority to highlight those behind the scenes that truly do push hip-hop and its culture forward. Recently, we’ve come across one talented youngin’ in the game that’s really getting the party started all around the world. You might’ve seen this DJ spinning a few of the hottest shows out here. You might’ve peeped him as the official DJ for SZA‘s CTRL tour or Noname‘s Telephone tour. We had the pleasure of interviewing Finesse Fest, a native from the Northside in Uptown Chicago, IL who is really taking the DJ world by storm. Check out the exclusive conversation below where he talks about being a DJ, routes it took to be where he is, advice for the upcoming DJs and much more.
RESPECT.: How did you get the opportunity to be an opener for Smino and SZA’s tour?
Ravyn Lenae is currently on tour with them; and she gave me the opportunity to open up and showcase my talent to be able to turn up!
RESPECT.: What is your favorite city of the tour so far?
It’s either Toronto or Chicago. The home crowd is always the most lit but Toronto was a close tie.
RESPECT.: What’s your background story behind the name?
My original Dj name was “Professor Finesser” and I got it from the Migos song called “finesser.” Once Kodak Black captioned a post using the name, everyone made their social media name the same thing so I changed it to “Finesse Fest.”
RESPECT.: How did you start DJing? Did it become natural thing or do you practice at clubs?
I originally was a party promoter and around a lot of djs that influenced me who are: Lil’ Dickey’s dj, dj Oreo, and 25th hour. In 2015, I didn’t take it serious and realized that’s what I wanted to do as my career. By throwing my own events and creating sound, I wanted to get my name out more. It was early March of this year, that Ravyn Lenae and Noname picked me to go on as my first show gig.
RESPECT.: What’s the one quote that you live by as a daily reminder?
“CHURCH DON’T STOP.” It means if the deacon passes away, church going to be on Sunday; if the pastor passes away, church is still going to be going on; and so on and so forth. No matter what it is, keep going and strive to get what you want! can’t stop won’t stop.
RESPECT.: Any advice to aspiring DJs chasing their dreams?
You have to appreciate the music. If you are getting it for the money then don’t do it. Any career you do in life you do it for you because it is your passion. Money will get you caught up.
RESPECT.: Name an album that you carry with all the time?
I would say [Future‘s] Monster mixtape. At the time of his career, fans and critics were biting his swag. At that time, he had to change it up his swag. The way Future was aggressive on the mixtape got me wanting to be…