Music News

Head Spins: DJ D-Up

djdupinmd.jpgAnybody who's ever heard a track by Chuck Brown and the Soul Searchers knows the deep power of go-go, that mighty blend of pure funk and raw soul that could only come from the streets of D.C. It's a heady mix of down-low and way-up-on-high that brings to mind nothing so much as the party of your life.

So it stands to damn good reason that DJ D-Up calls what he does, simply, "party music." After all, the cat was born in our nation's capitol. Better yet, his pops was a DJ too, back in the proverbial day. Which means D-Up's had that throwdown sound ground into him from the cradle to the streets.

Thank Zeus our first president's namesake city doesn't have the juice

of the M.I.A., 'cause otherwise D-Up might not be here bringing all our

party people to life. Dig it: As a teen, D-Up would sneak into clubs

and catch what who-knows-who was pushing. Then he'd go home to his

basement and push it further, farther, and deeper.

Once he got

to college at UVA, he turned those skills into a residency at Soccer

House, the frat-like hangout of the team to which he belonged. Thing

about it is, D-Up found himself better suited to the turntables than

the field, so he started slipping back across the Potomac and into the


Before long every hotspot in D.C. ended up having him

spin: Play Lounge, Saki, Josephine's, Club Five, Andalu, Fly Lounge,

Kstreet, 1223, Eyebar, and Tattoo among them. Eventually D-Up ran out

of dance floors to conquer and headed on down South.

Quick cut

to now: Saturdays at the Delano hotel's infamous Rose Bar, where the

parade of wildlife is a colorful as an early 20th century promenade on

Easter Sunday. Sure, there are a few tourists in shorts, as well as the

odd cross-causeway interloper. But for some reason even they turn

almost hip when they fall under the sway of D-Up's head-spinning. Like

he says, it's party music, so you don't need instructions to get with

it. It does help, though to have an open mind and an open soul.


again, it's not hard to open up to the Jungle Brothers crossed with

Common, or The Pharcyde's "Passing Me By" running into Pitbull's "Whoop

T Whoop." Maybe that's why Mokai has also begun putting D-Up on the

tables once a month or so, and why swank spots such as the Shore Club

and Bella Rose have had him handle the action as well. Sometimes it

pays to go where go-go has gone, and where all good parties end up --

with a DJ named D-Up.

DJ D-Up's Current Top Five:

1. "Universal Mind Control," Common
2. "Paranoid," Kanye West
3. "Whoop T Whoop," Pitbull
4. "Greenlight," John Legend feat. Andre 3000
5. "Listen Up," EPMD

Saturdays at the Rose Bar at the Delano, Miami Beach.