Dale “Deej” Lafayette began his lifelong exploration of adult contemporary music in the 1960s as a kid living in the East Oakland projects, collecting and listening to James Brown on King Records and any Motown LPs and 45s he could get his hands on. Radio broadcasts soon inspired him to include the likes of Elvis Presley, Wilson Picket, The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Joe Tex and many more.

In those early years, while developing a variety of artistic skills, Deej continued to add 8-tracks and cassette tapes as well as more vinyl to his growing collection, embracing Jimi Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane, Cream, Three Dog Night, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Janis Joplin, The Moody Blues, Sly & The Family Stone and Yes, among others. Throughout the 1970s, he pursued a variety of well-known music styles, as well as emerging genres.

“I became a kind of ‘at home’ DJ, and found that I could enjoy a wide variety of music in a single set – playing Miles Davis and Return To Forever right next to The Zombies and Led Zeppelin with a little Funkadelic and Sugarhill Gang sprinkled in. What a ride!”

To make money with his love of the creative process, Deej opened Signs & Graphics in 1980, a small art studio next to Berkeley’s People’s Park, and his work could soon be found all over the SF Bay Area. He expanded focus from 1988-1991, helping friend and accomplished jazz musician Art Maxwell create the Tonal Gravity Records label, and working on projects like graphic marketing and set design for the world premier of John Kaye‘s “Cherry Terry” at Theatre 6470 in Hollywood, and a series of illustrations for Ellen Sebastian‘s stage production of “Face” at SF’s Theatre Artaud, among others.

Deej followed this with his one-man art show, “Kozmik Thang, Explorations in Synergistic Art” – a hit at local Bay Area art galleries, cafes and coffee houses. During these exhibitions, he was approached to manage, and eventually take over, a northern California club scene newspaper, Karaoke USA. Deej re-tooled the newspaper and went national. The result was the award-winning quarterly music trade magazine Karaoke & DJ USA – whose growing staff of editors and contributors included noted author, music authority, DJ and karaoke virtuoso, Ben Fong-Torres, and music journalist/DJ Eric Arnold.

After five years of endless deadlines, traveling across the U.S. as a sponsor and speaker at music and pro audio industry events, and getting very little sleep, Deej took a needed break from publishing in 1998. This to indulge his lifelong musical aspirations and cultivate a career as a popular Bay Area DJ and entertainer — regularly booking gigs at some of the most sought-after parties, events and venues in Northern California.

“My DJ style became one of flexibility and creative unpredictability, but always with a focus on keeping toes tapping and bodies on the dance floor. I love old school. If the crowd was mature, I’d go with a lot of period classics, with a few rare tracks and a current hit or two thrown in. If it was a younger gathering, who knows? A lot of mixing it up with a variety of edm, current and classic hits, obscure jazz, funk and hip-hop, and creative segues. Gotta love it!”

Deej recently partnered with legendary recording engineer Paul Woycheshin (The Beach Boys, Jose Feliciano, Tower of Power) to launch East Bay Mobile Recording – which will offer mobile sound, video, entertainment and recording services, along with an all new in-house studio. “I’ll be integrating my Pioneer XDJ-R1 Digital DJ Workstation into our operations, providing live on-location entertainment services together with complete sound, video and recording production.”

Pioneer XDJ-R1 Performance Demo Video

Today, when not busy with AME websites primarily for the music industry and fellow DJs and musicians, or EBMR business, Deej spends most of his time with his family, walking the dog and creating mix tracks at his home studio in Northern California.


Website: DaleLafayette.com
Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/dale-lafayette
Facebook: facebook.com/DJDaleLafayette
Twitter: twitter.com/DaleLafayette