Sunday, June 16, 2024

FAST FIVE: Bryant Wilson gets the party started

Staff Writer | May 18, 2024 1:00 AM

Meet Bryant Wilson, a local DJ, trivia host and emcee with Ruby Frog Entertainment.

He just celebrated his 38th birthday and was born and raised in North Idaho.

1) How long have you been a DJ and what got you into the biz?

I have been a DJ for about 12 years. While I was in college getting my teaching degree, I started attending Tuesday night karaoke at the Iron Horse and happened to become friendly with the karaoke host. After a few months as a karaoke regular, he asked if I wanted to work for him and become a DJ, and I thought that it sounded like a blast and welcomed the opportunity. My career really started taking off as a DJ about the time I graduated from college, so I decided to stick with the DJ thing for a while to see how far it would go. Things must have gone pretty well, because I'm still doing it!

2) What joy do you get from helping people celebrate some of the biggest moments of their lives?

All I've ever wanted to do in life is to make an impact and be a help to people somehow. I know that sounds cheesy, but it's true. Teaching and working with kids still has a place in my heart, and I very well may end up revisiting that someday, but I receive so much joy from creating memorable moments and setting the tone for a couple's big day. My goal as a wedding DJ is to help make things go as smoothly as possible, so that the newlyweds and their families and friends can sit back and truly enjoy the day without having to sweat the details. Being surrounded by a group's happiness and appreciation, especially knowing that you are directly involved in it, is incredibly rewarding.

3) What are a few of your favorite songs to play at events and why?

Honestly, it's situational. Every wedding, party, and event is unique, and as a DJ, you get to tailor your playlists and performance to suit the crowd's tastes and preferences. It allows for a lot of creativity and improvisation. One of my favorite experiences during an event is hearing people react positively to what I'm playing. I take delight in experiencing that moment when folks connect the dots as to what the next song is, after the first few starting notes, and then they cheer and celebrate with those around them. Furthermore, when I play a song and the entire dance floor starts singing along at the top of their lungs, I can't help but smile from ear to ear. I love that feeling.

4) What is something people would be surprised to know about you?

As a side gig, I host my own channel, BryBad, on a website called Twitch, and I love entertaining and chatting with people all over the world. I often "speedrun" video games, which means you play a game from start to finish as fast as you can, and I have held a number of world records over the years. As of this writing, I hold 12 world records, but I've been involved with and have held many more! I'm a big nerd, and I'm totally OK with that. Additionally, I love taking part in local charities and fundraisers. I'm sure I don't have the space to talk about them all in major detail, but I'd like to shout out H.E.L.P. (Help Every Little Paw), Bartender's Ball, Bras on Dudes, Inland NW Step Up For Down Syndrome Walk and Inland Northwest SIDS/SUID Foundation, just to name a few. These are some great places to start, but I encourage anyone and everyone to get involved in the community and find a cause that you can support. Even if it's only a few Saturdays a year where you donate a few hours of your time, it's so worth it and you will make such a difference!

5) What are a few myths about the DJing industry you can dispel for us, or perhaps something you would like people to know about the work you do?

One of the most common misconceptions is that DJing is an easy job. While it may seem like just playing music, being a skilled DJ requires a deep understanding and knowledge of music (including genres and artists that you personally dislike), technical proficiency with equipment, crowd management skills and the ability to read a room and adapt accordingly. This ties into another myth, in that many people believe that DJs simply press play on a pre-made playlist and let it run. In reality, a good DJ adjusts their playlist on the fly, observing their surroundings and responding to the energy of the crowd. Lastly, some people think that DJs are interchangeable and perform the same way. In truth, DJs have their own unique styles, preferences and specialties. Some may specialize in specific genres or have a signature mixing style that sets them apart, while others might be better at coordinating an event and interacting with the crowd. When selecting your DJ, you should think about the things that are the most important to you and make sure that these desires and expectations are made clear from the start. This can help put your mind at ease, will assist the DJ in providing their services and will start you off in the right direction for your event.