DJ Riz of Crooklyn Clan Puts The Spinz On It!

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Interview By: White Chicks On Rap

WCOR: How did you become a DJ?

I became a dj around 1985. I listened to new york radio and its mixshows (kiss, wbls, wktu) and just knew I wanted to become a dj.

I learned how to actually mix from a neighborhood dj in brooklyn where I grew up.

WCOR: What was it like to be a part of Funkmaster Flex's Flip Squad?

It was a great experience being a member of flex's "flip squad" in the early-mid 90's.

We had the best djs in the city that covered every aspect of djing (radio, clubs, show dj, turntablism, ect.) I learned a lot about the business and made many connections to help me further my career as well as branch out and do different things.

Flex is a legend in this game and I will always respect what he has done for ny radio and as well as making the dj a businessman as well.

WCOR: What are the crowds like in the different countries you have played? How do they view hip hop?

As a traveling dj, every country pretty much loves the music. When I play at various parties in different countries, they are really into what you do when u play.

They know the music and relate well. The energy is for the most part always present. I just love spinning for new crowds.

WCOR: Fifteen years in the music industry and in hop-hop is a great accomplishment. How do you view your success? How do you view your place in the industry?

I've actually been in the biz since 1990 as a working dj. I feel I have accomplished a lot in this game (radio, show dj, battle dj, club dj, producer/remixer, etc.)

I think my personal success is only half as big as the success that my partner sizzahandz and I have had as the "crooklyn clan" which has brought us worldwide notariety for the party breaks and mashups over the last 15 years.

WCOR: NYC is known as place where hip-hop started. What was it like to be in NY when hip-hop started?

Nyc to me is the greatest city in the world. Some of the greatest mc's, dj's, producers, groups, b-boys have come from new york.

Growing up here made me see it all first hand and nothing is a better experience than that.

WCOR: What do you think of the current state of rap? Is there anyone you are excited about or would like to work with?

I think rap goes in cycles. Right now the south stuff is really poppin but people like Kanye, 50, G-Unit, Jay-Z as well as a lot of others are keepin hip hop musically balanced.

I like the variety but to me, hip hop in the late 80's and throughout the 90's was the best but remember, if it weren't for the hip hop pioneers, (too numerous too mention) none of this would be around today.

WCOR: Rap has crossed over into pop and rock. Do you think this is a good mix?

I think the hip hop branching out to pop and rock only makes it more worldy. That's a good thing.

WCOR: You have released singles on vinyl. Vinyl is starting to make a comeback with other artists, what do you think of this new/old trend?

With the digital era upon us, sadly speaking, I don't think vinyl is making a comeback at all. I'm a vintage vinyl head that traveled all over the world to collect vinyl and that can never be replaced at all.

Most djs are on programs such as serato, final scratch, torq, etc. It does make djing a lot more creative and fun, but it allows everyone to have "the music" now as to where we used to love havin a 12" that no one had or a version of a song no one had either.

I still have most of my vinyl but will probably be cuttin down my collection to the records I just really wanna keep (which will probably be a lot, lol).

WCOR: When Nervous Records is written about in the history books, what is the one thing you want people to know about it?

Nervous records is where I first put out party breaks. They were a dope independant label that specalized in party breaks as well as having dope artists like black moon, smiff n wessun, mad lion and others.

Crooklyn Clan really made our name on AV8 records which was the "King" of the party breaks for years, worldwide.
WCOR: When you are written about in the history books, what is the one thing you want people to know about you?

If I ever was to be written in the record books, it would probably be about how Crooklyn Clan became a legendary name as party record/breakbeat/mashup producers and djs.

As for myself, I would just like to be remembered as a dj who was well rounded and respected for the contributions I've made in this game.

Like our man, Riz?? Hit Em' Up On Myspace

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