THE REBEL FOSTER INTERVIEW
What's your story?
I’m originally from Chester Pennsylvania, 20 mins outside of Philly. I was an artsy kid along with my siblings. We were in a performing arts program since we were kids - learning music, acting, and dance. I played the tenor saxophone from 13-16, and started djing when I was 16 after I got kicked out of marching band for fighting. More so trying to figure out myself musically, I joined a program called The Noize, a community and music program based at Swarthmore College, where I learned radio operation and audio engineering. I was raised in a musical family. Both my siblings are musicians as well as myself, I just liked djing more haha.
Spent the early days my dj career doing dive bars, college parties & hookah spots, getting used to securing residencies. Learning the ins and outs of the dj life. Sticking with djing really worked for me, even though it gets hard, and you deal with a lot of bullshit like undercutting, gatekeeping, and being overlooked, djing got me opening for artists like Matthew Law, Earthgang, Dj Aktive and recently working with Jazmine Sullivan.
I was fortunate to be looked at by Mr Sonny James and started hosting Uglybass Unzipped On Dash Radio's LOUD station with him and Dj Leanwitit. Special shout out to Guns Garcia too - she offered a few guest spots to break me into the Fishtown scene. That’s big sis. I’m a huge believer in paying your dues and being patient. When it’s your time you’ll know and be happy about it.
What does the local music community mean to you?
Honestly if you asked me 4 years ago, I would say I couldn't give two shits. Sometimes being in the field for as long as I have you get a little bitter and defensive due to how other people do you wrong.
However, since I’ve been spinning in Philly for the last 2 years, I’ve seen so many talented people that should be supported and loved. There’s a new wave of Djs and artist who are more aware of the issues in the past. For myself, I’ve been going to all types of parties for the past 4 years from downtown clubs, to underground wares house rager jawns, soulful house jawns, queer jawns and even the theme jawns. Philly is my favorite dj city by far. The issue I see is everyone out for self or their crew when I feel like the enemies are these spots that don’t care about our artists. I guess it’s normal though, we all here to get on or paid.
My professional background is in community work. Because I love djs and artists period, I’m working on using my platform to create opportunities for people. I host an open deck happy hour for djs to come out, whether expert or novice and practice or try out their sets for future gigs, called “Beers & Bangers” at the Saint Lazarus Bar.
Also started a new monthly called “WCW” inspired by Guns Garcia. It’s to support female djs in the city - because us dudes done had the torch for so long, women need that torch too especially when they’re more than deserving of it.
Where do you find inspiration when creating a new mix?
It’s when I check out a new scene of djs, I’m always inspired by how they can control a crowd with a genre of music I’m not use to playing regularly.
I put out a couple volumes of disco funk type mixes inspired by Thursday night groove (Dj Waters and Leon Xavier) and my OG Del
That funk/house shit is spiritual.
What are some of your favorite types of events to spin?
I love guest sets lol. It’s a huge opportunity to inspire other djs I play with and to get inspired by them, and also to show off a lil. Nevertheless, skill doesn’t determine my worth; I just love to share energy with the homies. I really love doing dance battles.
The dance community can be the biggest army a dj can have, I think djs lost sight of that, they’re so worried about clout they forgot the reason why Djs exist. To make people dance.
I encourage other djs to do dance battles if they want to be inspired, and also if they want to extend their fan base with solid folks. I love the dance community.
Do you have any mixes released? If so, tell us about your most recent, or your favorite, mix or playlist you've created.
I have some dope mixes I’ve done over the last couple of years, most recent is my Golden Boy Vol 1&2 mix I put out on SoundCloud. Also have a bunch of hour long mixes on Uglybass Unzipped - you can find on apple podcast and SoundCloud.
Do you have any upcoming events coming up we can look forward to?
My New Party is called “FLEX” at the Barbary Sept 7th
Also doing a dope ass Back to Back with Dj Royale on Sept 28th at Warehouse On Watts hosted by Dirty south Joe
Who do you think is Next Up in our community right now?
Be on the lookout for D is for Darius, Dj Love, Dj Swvnk, Dj stardust. Cousin mike, Dj Dommis.
What's next for you?
The goal is to travel for more big DJ gigs. create more open platforms to kill gate-keeping in the artist community, and to progress. Progression and honing my craft is everything to me.