DJ Kuro, better known as Ashkan Karimloo, a fourth-year film and media studies and sociology double major, won Associated Students Program Board’s Battle of the DJs competition last Wednesday, Feb. 4.
What does winning battle of the DJs mean to you?
It’s awesome being able to play at Extravaganza, and it’s led to more things where more people have offered me gigs and stuff like that. It’s also cool recognition for the other organizations I’m associated with, because once the word spreads that I won Battle of the DJs, it brings a bigger crowd to them.
What do you think separated you from the other contestants at Battle of the DJs?
Everyone played well and is really good at what they do. But, I guess some of it is some selection, because I tried to mix the type of music that would play on the radio with the type of music that would play in IV or downtown. To me, they’re both completely different vibes, so since I was able to mix them both, I was able to bring something to the table that no one else was. Also, the guest judge was Andre Power from Soulection, who I’ve been listening to since my freshman year of college, so he’s been a big influence on me, and the music I was playing might have been more tailored to what he is more interested in.
What got you into DJing?
When I was a freshman, I noticed that the music in IV was pretty repetitive. Me and my roommate were into different types of music, we wanted to pretty much change what was being played, so sophomore year, my roommate bought a mini controller—the same one I actually use today. Since he was able to make the investment, I was able to start messing around with it. I would start playing at my house, and then my friends’ houses, and people were actually getting really into it.
Where else can you be seen playing now?
I’m on KSCB [91.9 FM] every Saturday from 4 to 6 PM. I’m also playing at Wildcat Lounge in downtown Santa Barbara every Thursday night for College Night from 11:30 PM to 12:30 AM. I’m also opening for Slow Magic on Feb. 26 at the Goodland Hotel in Goleta.
What advice do you have for others that want to become a DJ?
Broaden your horizons. Don’t let a DJ be your main influence. Don’t define yourself by one genre or particular style. It’s always good to get a little of the best of everything so that way you can synthesize it into something cool, new, and unique.
Karimloo is also a contributing writer for TBL.