NY, United States
Witness DJ Finesse’s artistry on the turntables, hear his work in a blockbuster film or experience his meld of musical selections alongside celebrity clientele. The Brooklyn-born, Queens-raised record spinner exhibits his talents on a wealth of platforms, all with the same skill and flair that his moniker exemplifies. With more than 15 years solidifying his brand in the entertainment industry, Finesse’s reputation speaks for itself.
As a Puerto Rican kid raised in a tight-knit family, music was the soundtrack to his life. His mother had a passion for Spanish boleros, his sister grooved to ‘80s pop records and his father, whose musical palette was widespread, served as a drummer with a local Latin band. Before Finesse put his hand on two turntables, he laid eyes on his dad’s equipment, which kickstarted his appreciation for the many aspects of producing quality sounds. His father’s inspiration and the gift of a DJ setup fostered his creative energy.
Fifteen years old marked a significant milestone for Finesse. Armed with his first Technic 1200 – just a single turntable at the time – he began traveling the road to DJ credibility. An avid sports fan, he parted with a hefty baseball card collection to score a second turntable. Practice makes perfect and with the right equipment, Finesse was on his way to following in the footsteps of lauded mixers that influenced his abilities -- DJ Premier, Kid Capri, Red Alert, Funkmaster Flex, Stretch Armstrong and John Robinson, among them.
Since scoring his first New York City gig at Club Expo years ago, DJ Finesse has come a long way. Many of Manhattan’s hotspots have since shut their doors, but during their prime, he captivated crowds with his soundscape. From hip-hop to house, Finesse played tunes during residencies at The Tunnel, Crobar, Spa, Pangaea, Gustovino’s, One and Mansion. Clubgoers at venues like Juliet, Tenjune, Home and M2 have also been privy to his talents. He currently showcases his turntable techniques at New York City nightclubs Amnesia, Gunbar and Crimson, where he holds residencies, in addition to spinning monthly at Providence in the Tropicana Hotel in Atlantic City.
On a larger scale, he’s rocked the house at Madison Square Garden, The Silverdome, Miami Arena, The Superdome, The Alamodome, Texas Stadium, The Target Center and The Continental Airlines Arena. In 2002, he landed Cancun gigs (The City, Bulldog and Fat Tuesdays) for both spring and summer breaks – which continue yearly -- and since 2003, holidays like Memorial and Labor Day weekends have brought him to Las Vegas, where he’s mixed records at LAX, Foundation Room and more.
Party rockers have undoubtedly experienced his quality mixing, but so have Hollywood’s elite and the entertainment industry’s frontrunners. Finesse has earned headlining DJ credits at shows for Rihanna, LMFAO, 50 Cent and T.I., among others. With a history of spinning events like ‘N Sync’s MTV Awards after-party and MTV’s “Millennium Bash,” there’s more than one solid reason why he’s chosen over his competitors: precision, originality and versatility.
His resume includes performing at the Bud Bowl party with Snoop Dogg for Super Bowl XLII, was featured in the hip-hop documentary “The Freshest Kidz” and on the MTV LP compilation Masters of the 1 & 2: History's Greatest DJs and since 2010 serves as DJ Premier’s resident substitute on Premier's Sirius XM radio show "Live From Headqcourterz,".
Some of his most respected work to date comes from a collaboration with rapper Ghostface Killah of Wu-Tang Clan fame. Blending artists’ records is second nature for DJ Finesse, but so is crafting original records, which he’s done for the rhymer. In April 2008, Finesse produced Ghostface’s “Slept on Tony," a song featured in Paramount Pictures’ blockbuster movie Ironman. The track was also featured on Ghostface's Greatest Hits album. Two years prior, in 2006, another successful project with Ghostface earned him placement on the rapper’s More Fish LP: he performed the scratches featured on “You Know I’m No Good,” which featured celebrated singer Amy Winehouse.
A true definition of a creative New Yorker, DJ Finesse’s passion lies in delivering quality music to eager listeners. His collective talents, from turntablism to production, will come to fruition on his debut solo album, which he’s currently crafting. His name stems from having skill in handling a difficult situation -- after all, only a few can master the art of the mix – but it’s artful management of his technique that truly defines what he’s about.