DJ profile: Break DJ Lobito

The Deep Crates Cartel main man tells it like it is


The clip above is footage from a global b-boy competition in Holland, all music by Break DJ Lobito.

DJ name(s): Break DJ Lobito
Real name: James De Valera
Age: 31
Nationality: Spanish
How long in Dubai: Six years

Introduce yourself in the length of a Tweet.
Break DJ Lobito is a leading supporter of vinyl culture, turntablism, breakin (breakdance) and aerosol art (graffiti) in the Middle East region. He was recently rated in the top five DJs of his style worldwide.
What brought you to Dubai?
Well I studied Arabic at SOAS (University of London), and my family used to live in the emirates before I was born so I was always going to end up somewhere in the region, and Dubai was the logical fit.
Where and when can we hear you spin?
Quite a few places at the minute! I have an eclectic style so for funk, soul and hip-hop I recommend Deep Crates every Thursday at Casa Latina, Ibis Al Barsha hotel – it gets busy after midnight. If you like reggae check out Drop Dread once a month at the same venue, we recently hosted reggae legend Horace Andy. Once a month you can also catch me at Boombox at the Music Room for pure non-commercial hip-hop. For more Latin breaks and eclectic sounds I play at the No.5 Terrace at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in DIFC every week from October, the ladies night on Wednesday is great and there is an art night starting there soon too.

Describe your DJ sound in five words?
Doesn’t drink from the mainstream.

Now describe your personality in five words?
I do not suffer fools.

What do you think of the Dubai music scene?
Neolithic but evolving. Still in a bling phase.

Tell us three of your biggest musical influences.
Break DJ Leacy, Coldcut, Q-Bert.

Now tell us one guilty pleasure.
I never feel guilty about pleasure!

What is your greatest achievement in life or music?
Reaching instructor level in Jeet Kune Do/Kali would be one in life, and in music probably being recognised as one of the top DJs in the world in my style.

If the world was going to end in the next five minutes, what tune would you put on?
Air – ‘Dead Bodies’.

If your home was on fire, what one physical object (no people or pets) would you save?
I’m glad you said no people or pets because it saves me from the guilt of admitting I would still save my Sesame Street portable vinyl record player even if there were people or pets in the house…

Best Dubai memory behind the decks?
Countless mind-blowing moments never captured on camera at Deep Crates, sometimes its better that way… DJing in front of 37,000 people in Abu Dhabi has to be up there as well…

...worst Dubai memory behind the decks?
I wouldn’t say worst but most challenging would be djing on a boat party when a mini-hurricane decided to come along sending vinyl and slipmats flying everywhere (all somehow caught mid-air by Frezidante, the man’s a ninja!) and having to keep djing using only a laptop…

If I could warm up for any DJ in the world, it would be...
Instead of warming up, I’d love to jam with Q-Bert, hearing him scratch over some of my breaks and beats would be killer!

Anything else to tell Time Out’s readers?
Music is music, it’s subjective but it’s a lot deeper than house and commercial so-called hip-hop and R&B, so keep your ears open, listen to something new for a change and don’t trust the radio to introduce you to cool music!
Also try and resist the urge to make requests, if you find yourself requesting songs every time you go out, go down to the shops and buy yourself some DJ gear and throw your own parties instead of bothering us!

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