Regarded as one of the UK’s best Hip Hop DJ’s and personalities, Shortee Blitz is no stranger to public love and industry praise for his knowledge, skill and support of hip hop and its culture. He has been at the head of the DJ game for close on twenty years and has never missed a beat when it comes to elevating his passion for the art of djing to lofty heights. Not bad for a man who started out digging in the crates at illegal London house parties to now spinning to capacity filled nightclubs, private parties and festivals around the world, travelling for most of every year to exotic locations such as Greece, Dubai, Ibiza and of course Australia. Living the DJ dream and making it seem like he aint breaking a sweat is all part of what makes Shortee Blitz one of the most respected, hardworking but above all humble spin doctors in the world.
To know Shortee is to appreciate a man who enjoys what he does for the true passion of what Hip Hop and its message means. To watch this genius on the wheels of steel is a lesson in the art of pure unadulterated DJ pleasure, as he effortlessly blends, beats and scratches music to perfection. The consummate party DJ, Blitz guarantees to take club patrons and music lovers on a journey through the senses, with his innovative and funky sets that appeals to the both the old and new skool hip hop lover. Coupled with his stellar DJ career that has brought copious amounts of travel and adoration from fans the world over, Blitz is also a celebrated radio DJ, holding court on UK radio’s coveted Kiss FM. His nominations and awards speak for themselves as Blitz has been nominated for Best Radio DJ (UMA) and Best DJ (MOBO) in 2007 & 2008 and took out the Best DJ award at the 2003 after being recognized as the UK’s Best Hip Hop DJ and Personality in subsequent years. Adding to that the creation of a multitude of successful cd compilations, mixtapes, remixes and original tracks is testament to the stellar career, that has seen him work alongside many of Hip Hop greatest artists such as: De La Soul & L.L. Cool J to Jay-Z and Nas to name a few. Not hard to see why Blitz has managed to secure himself a consistent and loyal global fan base that never tires of his shows or his style.
As Shortee Blitz sets to visit Australia again for a series of national club gigs this week for a series of club performances across the country, I set about to watch an old friend and mentor set about to do what he does best and entertain the Australian crowd that loves him like a family member that lives abroad. My relationship with Shortee is one that brims with admiration, respect and awe of the lessons he teaches without saying a word. His skill and talent as a king of the decks is second to none and watching him in action leaves you walking away always learning another level to the art of true djing. To the man that inspired me to step behind the 1s & 2s and begin my own DJ journey, who helped christen me with my DJ name and who remains a constant source of real, I say thank you. Thank you for your consistency, your passion and your constant bar raising, making DJ’s the world over take accountability for what we bring to the element of hip hop as a whole. Welcome home to Australia Mr Blitz, its great to have you back!
Hey Shortee, great to have you have back in Australia – when you going to become a resident here? We don’t like it when you leave ;o(
Hey Ms Henny!! It’s ALWAYS good to be back in Oz, it’s now become my home from home. I actually have Fam out here!! Great weather, great friends and music lovers!! I have to cure my spider phobia before I come live in your city…those dudes be on STEROIDS!!! Seriously, they’re so big, I can see facial features…
How has the DJ lifestyle been treating you of late? Every time I check out your Facebook page you are djing in Dubai, then Morocco, then Ibiza then back to London …..tough gig you got ;o) How does all that travel affect you on a mental / physical level if at all?
DJing is my day job and I treat it as such for the most part. Have to be on time, which I learned the hard way earlier on in my career. Gotta be where & when you say you’re gonna be. It IS the best job in the world! I travel the world to play music…nothing better than that. You control people’s moods and emotions with your selection. The money’s good, as I get to feed my family from this, but keeping a crowd happy is the ultimate goal. Gotta look after your health, I’m learning this the hard way too.. But I’m on it! Mentally, it’s peaceful for me as I’m a bit of a loner, so I can make music on the go, or clear my mind or answer interview questions..;o)
Now for those that don’t know you, you have been djing since djing was born really and you have elevated the game every year with your mixtape /compilation cd’s, Kiss FM Radio and world class DJ shows that have made you an international phenomenon. What made you want to become a DJ and how long ago did your journey start? Where was your first gig?
You’re making me sound old Ms Henny!!! But I have been in the game for a minute. This year is my 19th year on commercial radio, and I love my job. But I’ve been djing since 1990. My first gigs were illegal house parties around the South London area when I was part of sound system called ‘Class Act’. We used to find an empty house, pay the neighbours a fee so they wouldn’t call the police, tape bin bags over the windows, bring in a sound system and rock out until Sunday afternoon! Or until the cops stopped it. I made the switch to clubs soon after as the DTI started seizing equipment and soon after that, seizing DJ’s records…that was NEVER gonna happen to me.
Why hip hop Shortee ? What is it about this music genre that attracted you and keeps you grounded?
It’s the music and culture that I identified with the most as a young’un. Seeing and hearing Hip Hop for the 1st time, there was NOTHING on this planet that could hold my attention for that long. I tried it ALL. I could beat box a little. Couldn’t rhyme or do graffiti for shit! I could Pop a little, but nothing spesh. My B-Boying-TERRIBLE!! But I was always a fan of the music I spent every last pound on records just as a fan of the music, so I kinda fell into being a dj. It worked out well…I keep grounded by knowing exactly who I am…my friends from way back are still my friends, no yes men in my circle. Plus, I play records for a living, I’m not saving lives here..
What’s the secret to your consistency and longevity as a DJ? How have you managed to stay true to yourself and creativity of a true turnatablist ?
Being a music lover first and foremost. Committed to quality only. Not falling for any bullshit. End of.
Your thoughts on the current position Hip Hop plays in the music world today as opposed to say the era of Biggie & Tupac? Positive change or change in direction?
Hip Hop will always be around in some shape or form, I just think there needs to be a balance of what’s pumped out there. And I think that’s the part DJ’s like myself, Mr Thing, MK Harry Love etc. etc. play out here…The best of mainstream and underground music.
The artist / song / DJ that inspired you to DJ and why?
Inspiration to DJ?………Cash Money & Jazzy Jeff (50% each). They still blow my mind to this day!
As a DJ what do you think your sole mission is in this journey called hip hop?
Shine a light on the best music no matter what.
What do you love about Australia and performing for Aussie hip hop fans?
I love the willingness of the people of Oz to have a bloody good time, generally, you guys are very friendly and up for accepting great music. A DJ’s dream.
What are your current projects you are working on right now? Any mixtape albums in the works?
My production project entitled ‘Unafraid To Fall’ is in the works right now, is a definite focus of mine. I started this project 3 years ago, but with music production, you have to really dedicate a lot of time to the craft, ESPECIALLY if you want to be taken seriously and not disrespect the culture. You will see this project this year.
What would you say your mission statement or motto in life would be?
It’s nice to be important, but more important to be nice.
For more information on Shortee Blitz:
Multi award winning DJ/Radio Presenter. Music Producer. Blues & Soul columnist. Blah blah..
Kissfmuk.com/hiphopshow – Ask about me…
DJ Shortee Blitz Australian Tour Dates:
Always Hip Hop,