You probably know DJ Roland Belmares from White Party Miami, or Alegria in New York City, or One Mighty Party in Orlando, or perhaps from his international gigs from Amsterdam to Hong Kong, or from one of his many mixed CDs from Centaur Entertainment, including Fortitude Weekend, One Mighty Weekend, or Global Groove: Thrill. From his handsome good looks, to his signature Hi-NRG sounds blended with tribal and Latin rhythms, if you were not already a fan, be prepared to become one.
We took a moment to sit down with Belmares to learn more about one of our favorite DJs. Here is what he had to say …
Probably the question you are asked the most, what do you think is hot in the clubs this week and why?
Madonna’s new single, “Turn Up the Radio” – Why? It’s Madonna.
What is your favorite thing about being a DJ?
My favorite thing about being a DJ is watching the reactions to the music I’m playing. I think as a DJ you have a sense of what will work, but there is nothing like that live reaction. It’s what keeps me going till the wee hours.
How did you get your start?
I actually started in high school. I joined student council just so I could DJ the high school dances. But it wasn’t till I set foot in my first gay club that I really understood what DJ’ing could be. I started making my own mixed tapes (yes…tapes!) for my workouts and for friends. Then my best friend had me submit one to a new club opening in Austin and I was hired as a bar back/backup DJ. But as fate would have it, the night of the grand opening the head DJ got a better offer at his home bar and my bar back days were over before they started.
Tell us about one of your favorite moments from traveling around the world to DJ.
If I had to pick one, it would have to be playing in Bangkok my first time for Song Kran. It was my first time in the country and I wasn’t sure what to expect. The promoters were amazing and took care of almost every detail. They just made me feel so welcome so far away from home. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the crowd, but the guys came out and packed the event! I hadn’t seen the energy from that big of a crowd since the mid-‘90s in the States when Circuit Parties were still mega events. It was one of those moments that just blew me away and reminded me why I fell in love with DJ’ing all over again. I’ve been back twice since and am looking forward to my next event there (hopefully next year).
What has been the song of the summer?
The song so far this summer has been “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jaspen. I have to admit I fought this song at first but a buddy I know did a bootleg mix that kicked it up a notch and made it more my style. The next track that seems to be picking up steam this summer is Scissor Sisters’ “Let’s Have a Kiki.” Though I’m sure Madonna’s new track, “Turn Up the Radio,” will also be big now.
Who is your favorite artist and favorite remixer and why?
My favorite remixer is Gustavo Scorpio. His style couldn’t be more like my style as a DJ. He keeps the energy high in his mixes, and though the electro genre seems to reign in mainstream dance, his mixes are always on the Latin/tribal house side. My favorite artists? That’s tougher as the scene is constantly changing. I love Lady GaGa’s creativity and artistry or Adele’s haunting vocals, but in the end I’d have to say my all-time favorite artist is Whitney Houston. She’s been in my sets since the first day I started DJ’ing and I can’t imagine the dance scene without her touch.
Any funny tales from the road to relate to us?
Too many to mention here…and probably…well, I’ll leave that to your imagination.
What songs are on the tops of your playlist?
I would say these, but in no particular order.
1. Timebomb – Kylie Minogue (Steven Redant & Phil Romano Mix)
2. Let’s Have a KiKi – Scissor Sisters (Tribal Bootleg Mix)
3. (Drop Dead) Beautiful – Britney Spears (Edson Pride Mixes)
4. Sex Is in the Heel – Cyndi Lauper (Danny Verde Mixes)
5. Chicky Boom! – Pauly & Jackinsky ft Michael G
6. Mas Que Nada – Richard Grey and Nari & Milani
7. Turn Up the Radio – Madonna (Offer Nissim Mix)
8. Long Day – Inaya Day Allstars ft Crystal Waters (Chris Sammarco Crystal Days Chi Tek Dub Mix)
9. Dark Side – Kelly Clarkson (Gustavo Scorpio Mix)
10. Never Close Our Eyes – Adam Lambert (Digital Dog Mix)
Where will you be spinning in the coming weeks?
Here are my confirmed upcoming dates, but I am always adding more gigs, so check out my website.
SOUTHERN DECADANCE @ OZ – New Orleans, LA – 08/31/2012
SPLASH DANCE @ AUSTIN MUSIC HALL – Austin, TX – 09/01/2012
GAY DAYS LAS VEGAS TROPICANA – Las Vegas, NV – 09/07/2012
HERETIC – Atlanta, GA – 09/08/2012
DALLAS PRIDE @ The BRICK – Dallas, TX – 09/15/2012
JUNGLE CLUB – Atlanta, GA – 12/29/2012
Do you have any music you can share with your fans?
Sure, you can listen to one of my podcasts at http://djrolandbelmares.podomatic.com.
You can also buy my Centaur mixed CDs through Amazon or from iTunes at: http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/roland-belmares/id262175782.
How can your fans best keep up with you?
Please visit me at one of these links.