Award-Winning Record Breaker “DJ Malcolm Xavier” Reveals Secrets On Advancing As A DJ/Producer
At Social Blackbook, we are blessed with having access to really cool people. One of those people is “Professional Ghost” DJ Malcolm Xavier. He’s a well-known DJ out of the DMV (Slang for the Washington DC Metro area. [DC, Maryland, Virgina]), who has broke records like “Crew” by Goldlink, “Privacy” by Cardi B, “Plug Walk” by Rich The Kid (featuring Kendrick Lamar) and many more.
He is now going back to his roots and taking that next step as a Music Producer.
His next project is with up and coming artist Ikey and DMV’s own Trey from UCB, who has been touring with DC legend, Wale. The banger they are breaking is called “Go outside”, that will be released on all major platforms sometime in April. I just heard it, IT SLAPS. Trust me.
Thanks to PR specialist and industry thought leader, Darrell Smith, Founder of We Are The Throne, I was able to get a few questions answered by DJ Malcolm Xavier about how to advance as a DJ/Producer.
With this interview, I am going to do something different because I asked questions we all want to know as music lovers.
As I read each answer, I am going to interpret what I took away from it. Try to do the same for yourself and don’t read my responses as a bias overshadowing from my opinions. Here we go.
QUESTION: What influenced you to jump on the tables?
ANSWER: What originally influenced me was really an accident. I was in college at the time and threw a party where two DJs that I booked weren’t doing too hot. They were great skill-wise, but they didn’t have the songs people wanted to hear. I had the songs, so they threw Serato on my laptop and told me to finish the party jokingly. I didn’t take DJing seriously until years later out of college; by then I had been a recording engineer, producer, and even a rapper at one point. DJing was the next logical progression of learning music from all perspectives and a more direct way of interacting with people and music.
TAKEAWAY: Everything isn’t always planned, so be present in the moment. Make the most of it.
How did you go about your connections for your access to drop exclusive songs (w/o giving up the sauce of course)
God really. A lot of the time the people giving me the songs are my genuine friends, way before I was ever DJing. “Crew” for example, came from DJ Marauder (Goldlink’s official DJ), who I went to high school with. We had a multi-media class together and were cool ever since. It just so happened that our lives aligned with that record almost a decade later. So it isn’t a secret sauce or formula, a lot of my connections are just people I probably already knew for years.
TAKEAWAY: Relationships are important. Don’t burn relationships unnecessarily.
Sidebar: Crew was so DOPE! ha
What do you mean by saying you’re a professional ghost?
It’s a joke that started in college. I could be everywhere and nowhere at the same time. I would be at every event, party, gathering, but I wasn’t trying to be seen. I didn’t always announce myself or make a big entrance. I would just pop up, and people would be like “Yo, when did you get here?” Or the next day “You were there? I didn’t even realize.”
TAKEAWAY: Know how to move. Sometimes the loudest person in the room is the smallest. You can have a meaningful presence in many ways. Study the room and get the most out of the experience.
What would you say contributed to you having a trained ear for instant hit records?
The only thing that has contributed was trial and error. Like that party, I was talking about where the DJs put Serato on my computer. While I had no skill as a DJ, I could instantly understand, there were records that people wanted and ones they didn’t want. And over the years, again being in parties, but not being “in the party”, just watching how people reacted to certain songs more than others. Even in my own tastes from listening to music at home, I started to break down elements of why certain songs hit me and why certain ones didn’t. It’s really a scientific study for me.
TAKEAWAY: That’s exactly the point from the previous response. When you get to understand the culture you’re in you can then use that knowledge to progress yourself and the people around you.
One thing most people don’t know about you that if they knew their level of respect would be even greater?
I mean if they care about sports, I was pretty decent at basketball. I stopped playing in 10th grade because I wanted to be a normal kid, but before then I won a national championship, placed 4th at the AAU Junior Olympic invitational, tons of regional championships, etc. I’m from the same region as guys like Kevin Durant and Michael Beasley and understood I was good but those guys were great and figured I probably should go another away.
TAKEAWAY: Another win for being aware. Know yourself before you try to be someone else. You’ll then perfect yourself and hone your true skillset. It seems like he’s a master at implementing his researched knowledge.
What is next for Mr. X?
Two main things I would say are up next for me. Locally, I want to start jumping out and working with more artists on the production side to get our area up to speed, finally, with the rest of the country, musically. And nationally, when it comes to DJing, playing more areas and clubs more frequently. Especially, the ones I don’t get to touch often to show them what DJs from the DMV can do. We take nightlife and DJing extremely seriously here. Anyone who’s ever partied here knows that. But now its time for the world to see.
TAKEAWAY: I’ve been fascinated with the idea of micro-influencers are the real influencers of popular culture. Their voices are much bigger than the microcosm that their haters don’t want to see them graduate from. This sounds like this is a graduation to the big leagues to me.
Remember to look out for that record by Ikey and Trey.