Growing up, I had a love for music that most people could not understand. If I was not eating, sleeping or engaging in some activity, I was busy humming and drumming to some notes. I had an ear for music and recognized the top musicians from an early age. By the time I completed high school, I knew that I was going into music, one way or another. I finished my BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Music Technology, and from there, I ventured into deejaying at gigs.
I’m that kid who had that older sibling that everyone considered cool. Growing up under my brother Arnold’s wing had its perks. He was good at almost everything from sports to music to arts. The interesting thing was that he also did well academically so yes, the bar was set pretty high for me as a kid. I loved his mixes and would often sneak into his room to listen to them when he was not around. It was during one such time that he caught me and instead of getting furious at me, he let me in on how he made them. We started slow, and I saved up money to buy the necessary things. A few speakers, turntables, channel mixers, headphones and mixing software at hand, I was set to make my mixes. He held my hand throughout the way, and though he opted to go into law, he lay the foundation for my career. And did I mention that he’s my best fan now?
"Right after high school, there was a lot of pressure to get my life right. Everyone had an opinion of what I should do, and I took some time off to think about my future. I knew that it had to be my way, else I would spend my life following someone else’s dream. I did get accepted into a good college, but I turned down the offer at the time. Usually, when I was down, I would find peace by playing some songs and thinking of fresh ways I could create a mix. That’s when it occurred to me. ‘I should do what I love!’ I made the decision, and I have never looked back. I know that there are people who frown upon this mantra, but I could not have it any other way. Here I am today, happier than I have ever been and the future is looking just as bright as it did when I made the decision."
"For me, it has to be that moment when I created a lousy mix for my brother. I could see him trying to keep his face straight and fight back the laughter. Though my first trial was not all that good, I couldn’t help but feel happy. It was the first time in a long while that I had done something willingly. Not to compete with my siblings, not to please my parents or teachers, this was for me. And I knew that I wanted to have this feeling forever, and of course get better at it. I was eight at the time, how time flies!"
"I was at a gig that I had booked during my first year in college. Some of my friends had come out to support me, and I knew that an old pal (Arnold) was bringing his kid brother to see me perform. Towards the end of the show, he and Miller came up to the decks, and Miller asked if he could take over for the few remaining minutes. It was one of my first gigs, and I knew that I was taking a risk, but I let him play as Arnold vouched for him. And I’m glad I did. He turned out to be amazing!"
After I played with Davis at the gig, we kept in touch, and I attended more of his concerts. He was much better than I was, and I was still in that phase where I needed direction in my life. I got into college to pursue the course he was taking as I could already see how amazing his skills were. He got to a point where he would ask me to come on board for a gig now and then. Towards the end of my studies, we realized that we had so much in common when it came to where we wanted our careers to go. We held some serious talks upon this realization, and we decided to come up with a company. After saving up and using the equipment we individually had, we were ready to start booking events. And the naming part was easy. We are both Jacks and music flows in our blood: Jack Beats!