I have personally known Sushiman for over 10 years. I would always see him with TP Lords at all the clubs. He seemed like the best helper around. It took a few years for him to talk with me, other than saying hello and goodbye, and after that we became friends. About two years ago it was nice to see Sushiman come out from behind the shadow to take the spotlight on his own as a DJ in South Florida. In two short years he became a South Florida favorite and I am sure before long he will be traveling all over to spread his music love. It was nice to sit down with Sushiman right before he is about to celebrate his birthday week for this Hotspots exclusive interview.
How did you get started in the club world?
I went to Voodoo Lounge on a Sunday because my friend wanted me to find drag queens to perform at a private party. I was introduced to Glitz Glamour and after a while she brought me back stage where I met TP Lords, Poizon Ivy, Lola Lush, Daisy Deadpetals and Danny Villar. I began a friendship with TP at Gay Days 2002 when I saw TP at the hotel and we hung out and we became close friends. Since I worked at Galanga, TP gave me the name of Sushiman. I then started following TP everywhere and I started having a love affair with music. After many years I began working for Danny at Voodoo Lounge and my club life began.
When did you decide you wanted to be a DJ?
As I said earlier I started going to the clubs with TP and started to love the music. There came a time where I would find the songs for TP to perform and after a while she told me I should be a DJ. The only problem was I did not have the skills, but thanks to DJ Miik and DJ T-Pro and Sean David I not only was taught the skills, but given a location to start my dream career.
What was your first residency?
My first residency was Johnny’s in Fort Lauderdale and then Johnny’s Miami quickly followed. TP got me my second residency at Twist where I spin every Tuesday. I also spin at Azucar every Thursday for Drag Wars, as well as periodically at Palace, Discotekka, Coliseum and The Manor.
What has been your favorite gig?
So far I have had three favorite gigs. The first was 4th of July weekend at Palace. It was a Sunday and the place was packed, spilling on to the streets. I had never spun for such a large crowd at that time and it was inspiring. The second was Stonewall Pride, thanks to my friend Corrie Boyd, and the third was just a few weeks ago for New Year’s Eve where I spun at Twist from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. It was a long set but it went by quick because the club was packed all the way up to 7 a.m.
What is the party you want to DJ at the most? (Your ultimate DJ gig)
I’ve been a huge supporter of Care Resource and White Party Week. I helped put together a showcase of performances by South Florida’s best drag queens at the Casino at the White Party in Vizcaya in 2010 and got to really see how the entire event played out. I would love to be the headliner DJ at the White Party one day. It would mean so much to me to give to the community I love.
What separates you from other DJs?
My name and my style. Every DJ has their own personality and that manifests into their music. So, DJ Sushiman is all me! What I feel coming from inside of me plays into my music and I love seeing how people react and dance to it. I’m not only a house DJ. I’m an open format DJ too.
Other than DJing, what do you like to do for fun?
I love my friends; they are like family to me. I love to spend time with them, kiki a little, go out, have fun, just be silly together and be there for each other…make each other laugh and give out good energy. Movies, theme parks, clubs, cooking, shopping, anything!
Describe Sushiman in 3 words?
Sickening beats down!
What does the future hold for Sushiman?
I don’t know! I’m just going with what the universe brings me. I work with some amazing people already, and they’ve introduced me to other amazing people. I just want to do what makes me happy, what I love doing, and if playing sickening beats will get me to be a world-class DJ, then so be it! But I’ll never stop being Sushiman, I will always be myself no matter what. My mama taught me right and I know she’s still with me everywhere I go!
DJ Sushiman will be celebrating his birthday all week long. Look for parties at Azucar, Coliseum, Discotekka, Palace and Twist (alphabetically).