According to Desmond “DJ DDT” Travis, Detroit’s music scene is still very much alive and still has an influence on R&B and Hip Hop today. When DJ DDT was asked what comes to mind when you hear the words “Detroit’s music scene” he said, “What comes to mind for me is soul. Soul music is still very prevalent in Detroit.” Soul music it is. Detroit is known for its famous soulful name “Motown”.
Detroit received its famous nickname from the alias “Motor City”. Once Motown Records was established in January of 1959, and later filled itself with a talent pool of soul music, Detroit birthed its name “Motown”. “I think Motown is and will be extremely influential in music around the country. I think what’s happening today is that the influence is less in today’s R&B and Hip Hop scene but more prominent in classic R&B as well as soul,” said DJ DDT.
Classic R&B is no stranger to the heart of Motown. Detroit has bred classic artist such as William “Smoky” Robinson, Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, the Temptations and many more. There is a history of talent in Detroit and present in Motown today. If A& R for a record company wanted to find talent in Motown today -hitting Detroit’s music scene is a must. “I’d still be in the clubs, the karaoke spots, open mics and showcases. Detroit is not lacking in talent at all. We have tons of Jazz musicians, R&B soul singers, Hip Hop emcees, street rappers and underground Hip Hop rap artists, “said DJ DDT. Lets’ not forget Detroit’s very own Hip Hop artist, Big Sean.
“The underground scene in Detroit is an incredible world. You have rappers like Moe Dirdee dominating the scene, incredible lyricists like Mr. Wrong aka Bareda, talented artists like Du Tyme, MarvWon, Fatt Father, 87, groups like Street Justice, Cold Men Young, P.H.E.A.R and Crown Nation. The great thing about Detroit’s underground artists and producers is that they have more of a fan base outside of Michigan. I think that’s incredible! On the soul music side, all the artists I named earlier and more are doing great. Instead of saying underground, I’d say grassroots,” said DJ DDT. Those grassroots artists he mentioned are Elzhi, Black Milk and World Famous Matix. All the artists mentioned were homegrown and fed by Motown.
Motown’s very own, DJ DDT, is a part of that soulful talent pool as well. DJ DDT does a lot of mix engineering for different artists. He mainly works out of the Mix Factory One Studio located in Detroit’s metropolitan area. His work does not stop within the walls of Motown. He also has a compilation album with the Las Vegas based Frontline Entertainment Media Group. The album is scheduled to be released soon. “Oh I almost forgot! I’m still DJ’ing at different events and venues. I’ve been a DJ almost all my life, can’t stop.” He won’t stop and Detroit’s heart keeps beating to the rhythmic soul.
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