RS: With twenty-eight years as a DJ, where do you see dance music going in the US?
WH: Hard to say. It's evolved from all real instruments to primarily electronic. It's been broken down into categories that even I have a hard time describing. I imagine it will go in the same direction of the audiences' tastes du jour. The good news is that tastes will always vary so there will always be a market for whatever styles are out there.
RS: How do you describe your sound as a DJ?
WH: I play for my crowd so it varies from gig to gig. I never play all of one format because, to me, it's ALL dance music. I won't limit myself to one style because, in talking to my audiences from coast to coast, I've found that they appreciate variety. I'm fortunate and grateful to have the years of experience and knowledge to play ANY type of format which makes it easy for me to mix it up, no pun intended!
RS: Do you think dance music is too segmented?
WH: If you mean are there too many styles of music out there, then I would have to say yes. It's very limiting to both the audience AND the DJ. I can't tell you how many DJ's tell me that they'd LOVE to play music outside of the mold in which they've been placed but are afraid it will affect their reputation. VERY limiting and no allowance for growth. Sad.
RS: What advice do you have for DJs out there?
WH: You MUST MUST MUST have a passion in your heart for the music. And NEVER NEVER NEVER do it just for the money. Only a select few get wealthy from the job. I'm not one of them. My passion for the music ALONE has kept me doing it as long as i have. The feeling you get from creating a room full of people screaming with their hands in the air is better than sex. For real.
RS: Why are you deciding to give up DJing?
WH: I'm not giving up DJ'ing. I'm taking my name out of the hat for non-benefit circuit events. When I first sent out "the letter" announcing my retirement, I said I would not be in the running for anymore circuit parties. Since then, I've gotten tons of feedback from friends, people in my industry and people from my dance floor. The general concensus has been that I made a rash decision and that I should never limit my possibilites. At the same time, I still feel very passionate about my initial reasons for writing the letter. One reason, among many, is the fact that circuit parties started as fund raisers for AIDS and many parties today clearly are not being held for that reason. So, for now, I'd rather limit my DJ'ing to fundraising events, circuit or not, occasional club gigs and house parties. The rest of my time will be spent finding a profession that will afford me a way to survive in this world a bit more comfortably.
RS: You're a female DJ playing in a gay men's world. Why did you choose that route?
WH: Women don't have the appreciation for my art like men do. That and I've always considered myself to be a gay man trapped in a lesbian's body.
RS: How does playing a party for women differ from playing a party for men?
WH: A DJ in a womens bar is, for the most part, a human jukebox. Women tend to like top 40 hits and LOTS of retro music. Men, for the most part, like to be taken on a musical journey. It's like night and day. The women that like my style can be found dancing with the boys!