Head Spins: DJ Affect

South Florida's busiest head-spinner.

One gets the impression that if there were eight days in a week, DJ Affect would be spinning each and every one of 'em. Hell, it's a bet he'd be spinning every day of the week if there were 10 or 12 or 20 — that's how driven the cat is. When you're already spinning seven out of seven, what's a few more anyway?

Yep, you read correctly. DJ Affect is in effect seven days a week, and one of those, Friday, is out of town: at Pangaea in Austin. Locally he's everywhere from The Forge on Sundays, where he has held the tables at Soul Kitchen for three rad years, to Privé on Saturdays (as well as Tuesdays), for the weekly throwdown known as Upgrade.

His story sings along like a song. Laid up in a wheelchair at age 12 from a sports injury, the kid named Ari Kalimi did what a lot of homebound youngsters do — he watched a ton of movies. Chief among them was Juice. If you recall correctly (and you better), Ernest Dickerson's 1992 ghetto classic not only features Tupac and cameos from the likes of Queen Latifah, EPMD, Special Ed, Dr. Dre, Fab Five Freddy, and Treach, but also clicks with some kick-ass DJ battles.

So kicking were the face-offs, in fact, that our boy Ari decided right then and there to get with the spin. He started out small: a $10 house party here, a $10 house party there, until eventually he had enough loot for his folks to see he was serious about the endeavor. Then, one night at the now-defunct Cream on South Beach, the then-15-year-old reborn DJ Affect begged his way into taking the spot of a no-show spinner. In short, he blew the roof off the ol' hot spot.

The rest, as they say, is residency — and drive-bys. There were spots at Chaos alongside Funkmaster Flex and DJ Clue, at Cream with the Beatnuts, at Billboard Live for Jay-Z, the odd nod at Cameo.... The list is as relentless as the DJ himself. Through Louis Oliver's Forge Sundays, he has even hooked up with sports stars such as the Grizzlies' Antoine Walker, the Browns' Braylon Edwards, and, of course, D-Wade and Shaq. The last two continue to fly in Affect for their party soundtracks, no matter where those parties may be.

But this DJ wouldn't be doing like he's doing if what he did weren't 100 percent spot-on spin-cycling. Affect says he's "more across-the-board than open-format," and if his mix-and-mash dash is any indication, that's across a very big board. Freestyle such as Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam's "I Wonder If I Take You Home" might swing seamlessly into Stevie Wonder's "Do I Do." A new backbeat gets added Fleetwood Mac's driving "Rhiannon;" a little Human League bounces off Luke. And just as Affect is not afraid to get "Closer" to Ne-Yo, he is brave and bold enough to beat When in Rome's "The Promise" with some kind of gangsta swagger.

Which all kind of makes this Miami cat someone to be reckoned with. And now that Affect has teamed with the Grammy Kids and started remix and production work, there's no question his profile is only going to grow. I just want to know how he's going to find anymore time in the week.

DJ Affect's current top five:

1. "Day N Nite (Crookers Remix)," Kid Cudi

2. "Heartless," Kanye West

3. "Wonderwall," Oasis

4. "Paper Planes," M.I.A.

5. "Pop Champagne," Ron Browz

 
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