The Rocks Off 100: DJ Rockwell, Booth Pimp and Party-Rocker
Photos by Marco Torres
DJ Rockwell is one Houston's most versatile and talented DJs, and one of the many assets of the Booth Pimps DJ collective. His ability to rock any party to the fullest with Top 40 to hip-hop to anything in between, this DJ certainly lives up to his name.
Who? A native of New Mexico, Rockwell has been living in Houston for seven years now and considers Houston his home just as much as New Mexico. "I have two older sisters that influenced me musically growing up, and they both had very diverse tastes in music" he explains.
"I was drawn to hip-hop and reggae mostly," he explains. "I came up heavy in the underground hip-hop scene in New Mexico, which is a lot bigger than people may think. All of my friends were either B-boys, graffiti writers or DJs. I was drawn into DJing in the early '90s and have never looked back.
"I started at house parties, then started opening up for hip-hop concerts, eventually ending up on KISS 97.3, the top rated hip-hop and R&B station in Albuquerque," Rockwell continues. "I was later transferred to their sister station PARTY 104.9/93.3 in Houston."
Mas Musica! featuring La Gusana Ciega, Porter, Siddhartha
TicketsSun., Oct. 2, 6:00pm
Nothing But Thieves presented by Ones To Watch
TicketsSun., Oct. 2, 7:00pm
Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats
TicketsMon., Oct. 3, 7:00pm
THALIA - Latina Love Tour
TicketsMon., Oct. 3, 8:00pm
TicketsTue., Oct. 4, 7:00pm
Home Base: "Houston is my home base and is where I DJ most of the time," he says. "I still make it out to New Mexico, but Houston Is definitely home."
Why Do You Stay In Houston? "Houston is a dope city I have always felt welcome here and have made so many good friends," crows Rockwell. "Back in 2009 when the radio station flipped, I could have left... but something told me to stay here. It was one of the best decisions I've ever made. I feel at home here and every year that passes I love this city that much more."
DJ Rockwell has many fans across the city.
Good War Story: "Well, not sure if this is a war story but it's something I've dealt with for a while," Rockwell explains. "I started as a very hardcore hip-hop DJ. I guess you could have called me a 'purist,' so going from the underground side to the mainstream-radio side was a little tough.
"I got called a sellout plenty of times, but I never saw it that way," he adds. "I always saw it as progression."
Music Scene Pet Peeve: "I feel people's attention spans are so short these days," Rockwell says. "They move from one genre to the next just to seem cool. I really could care less, if it sounds good and I like it, I'll play it."
Five Records You Can't Live Without:
"Damn!" Rockwell says. "There are so many more!
Best Show Ever: "It has to be the 2011 Redbull Thre3style competition here in Houston," recalls Rockwell. "It was good to see that many people come out and support a DJ competition and actually be into it.
"I had so much support from so many people that night, it really made me feel like I've lived here my whole life," he says. "I'm still so thankful to everyone that came out to support and made it possible for me to win. Special thanks to DJ Remix for basically being my coach during the entire process."
Next Show/Project You're Promoting: Rockwell says he's constantly working on new shows and projects with the Booth Pimps, and urges readers stay updated by following them on Twitter (@BoothPimps).
"I'm working on getting more into the production and remixing side of DJing along with putting out more mixes on a regular basis," he says. "I'm always up to throwing some parties with my DJ homies, so be on the look out for that. My club schedule is constantly, changing so add me on Facebook."
See who else has joined The Rocks Off 100 this year on the next page.
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