SAN DIEGO -- Besides being a genuinely nice guy, DJ Will Z is a popular local DJ who can be heard spinning at nightclubs across Southern California.
Hailing from St. Cloud, Minn., "Will Z" gets his DJ name from his hard to pronounce last name: Zakrajshek.
Refusing to give up his age, Will Z says he is "old enough to legally DJ" (although we do know that he has plenty, plenty of years ahead of him). He's also taken by a loving partner.
Read more about DJ Will Z below:
Where can people find you working?
Rich’s, Spin, Bourbon Street, Numbers, in Long Beach at Executive Suites Night Club, and Splash in San Jose.
When did you start spinning, and why?
I started spinning in March 2008 at The Flame when DJ Nikno asked me if I would be interested in him showing me how to DJ. I said "of course" and started to open for him on Friday Nights at The Flame. Once I found I had an ear for mixing I just stuck with it and it grew very rapidly from there.
Vinyl or CDs? Why?
Neither! I do all digital now because it is a lot easier to mix music videos if I kept it all digital. I started on CDs but soon moved over.
What type of music do you spin?
Top 40/hip-hop/EDM mostly with music videos too. I also love a lot of the EDM/dance mixes of rock songs lately.
What type of music will you NOT spin?
Nothing really. I use to say country but after doing the Hillcrest Hoe Down and throwing in some country beats to my set. I guess I will DJ almost anything now.
What is the most bizarre song request you have received?
The original mix of “Taylor Swift’s – Trouble.” I got asked at 12:30 am on a Friday night and I looked at the guy like he was crazy. Then said "no way, go ask the DJ in the back room!" Haha.
What song do people request the most?
I honestly don’t get a lot of requests anymore. But I would have to say the "Harlem Shake" and "Wobble."
Do you adjust your music to fit the crowd? How?
YES! Any good DJ does. If I notice I am playing something that is starting to clear the floor I just mix into another song. Or go by requests if there are any.
What is the funniest thing you have seen on the dance floor?
Last Halloween there was a guy in a Banana outfit so I played “Big Banana” and let him jump in the DJ booth and dance with me.
What is the most scandalous thing you have witnessed while spinning?
Drug deals and possible sex going down. But the most disgusting thing that has happened was a few Fridays back someone I swear “crapped” his pants in from the DJ booth and I was almost ready to vomit for about two songs! Bad bottom!
Which venue or party was your favorite?
I really enjoy all the venues I spin at, so my favorite party would have to be Hillcrest Cityfest. I had a blast last year DJing it and hope I get the chance again.
What do you love most about being a DJ?
The music and the people. I love being able to make a connection with people on my dance floor just through beats. Plus I have some of the greatest fans around the world already!
What advice would you give someone who wants to get into your profession?
DON’T GIVE UP! I have to say there has been a few times in the last five years of DJing that I have just wanted to throw in the towel and have had some great DJ friends tell me no way in hell I should. Get ready to work for free, and just don’t stop practicing how to mix. Don’t let yourself become an “iTunes DJ” aka don’t mix just change songs. I have to say I will walk out of a bar if that’s the type of DJ there.
What song best describes you and why?
"Drunk Girls In The Club" by Jump Smokers ft Jermaine Durpri because it's seriously my life and I quote: “Every city every club every spot I go." Plus the beat just keeps me shaking my booty! It’s my repeat song on iTunes right now.
DJ Will Z has two ways to find him online. Check out his website HERE or check his free mobile app "DJ WILL Z - Mobile" - available in both the Android and Apple markets. The app has over 40 mixes available, plus the "Z Pass," which can be used at many venues that Will Z performs in for free or discounted cover and more.
Top: Will Z DJ'ing at Rich's in drag for the "Divas in Drag" party. Credit: Cali Griebel.
Middle: Will Z DJ'ing at Rich's. Credit: Mel Marcelo.
Bottom: Will Z DJ'ing at Rich's. Credit Cali Griebel.
If you would like to nominate a DJ, bartender, dancer or other local community member to be profiled, please email Jim Winsor at firstname.lastname@example.org.