I usually ask the DJs I interview who their favorite DJ is. Well, DJ Scotty Rox is definitely on the top of my favorite list, both musically and personality wise. Rox is a vastly sought-out New York DJ, both in the city as well as Fire Island. Having won the Glammy award for the best DJ for the past three years, and with a story to tell, I was able to catch up with him during his busy schedule for a quick chat.
DJ Rox can be seen Mondays for the Shequida show in fire island, Wednesdays at the Sherry Vine show at Industry, Thursdays at the Shequida show at Hardware, Fridays at Boxers Chelsea, Saturdays at Hardware and Sundays at Monster with Bob the Drag Queen.
So do you spin on Fire Island?
Yes, I do. I’ll be doing Mondays, “The Shequida Show,” at the Ice Palace, and the Tuesday dance party as well. I’ve been there for three seasons.
What made you decide to become a DJ?
Actually, it’s funny, it kind of randomly fell into my life. I was always inspired by music growing up, because my dad was a mechanic. He used to always have his boys out in the garage helping him, and he used to play all this amazing music. We used to go on road trips, and he would make these mixtapes on our trips to like Yellowstone Park or wherever we were going that year. I think I just acquired the love for music from my dad. I studied it all through high school and junior high. I was in choir and all the plays. Then I was bartending here in NYC. One night the manager was like, “The DJ didn’t show up. I know you studied music, so just go home and get your CDs, come back and just play music.” I said, “My gosh, I don’t know how to mix.” She said, “I don’t care, just make sure there’s no silence.” I was like, “OK, cool.” So I went home, got my CDs and I ended up playing music that night and fell in love with it, and decided that I wanted to be a DJ. So I took my tax return that year and went down to Fortune Street and 9th Ave. and took a course there, and I put demos together. My first gig was Splash in the basement at John Blair Fridays. I was playing pop music in the basement. Once I hit Splash my name hit, and I started to get all the calls. I didn’t always really want to be a DJ, but I’m very grateful that it fell into my life the way it did and that God gave me this opportunity, and here I am.
How long have you been DJing?
For about 10 years now.
How old are you?
I’m 34. I moved here in 1999. All these people that I get to work with now, back in the day, I used to wish I could meet them, like Lady Bunny and Johnny Dynell, and now I get to work with them, and I have their cell phone numbers, and they’re texting and calling me. It’s just very surreal for me, and I’m really grateful for this opportunity.
Do you have a favorite DJ?
There are so many, but if I had to choose one, Johnny Dynell has been my mentor or like a role model. He helped me a lot. I get to work with him at the Penthouse party at the Copacabana.
What do you like best about DJing?
The reward of seeing people that come to the club and escape the harsh realities of their day-to-day life. I love the fact that they come to escape the realities and I’m able to help then with that.
Do you have a boyfriend?
No, I’m single.
Is there anything else you want to talk about?
I mean, most people know, but I’ve been sober from alcohol for a while. Halfway through my career I hit rock bottom and lost everything and pretty much had to start from square one and rebuild my whole career after that.
Yeah. I quit drinking, and it was kind of like—Shequida was my savior. I had all these people who I thought were my friends, but when I hit rock bottom, she was the one who was there for me. She helped me realize that I needed to get my shit together, and I just cut it out of my life completely. So I haven’t had a cocktail in like four years. I built everything up and then I lost everything, because New York can swallow you up really quickly if you’re not careful. There are so many things that can take you down really easily, especially nightlife—all the amenities and the DJs with drugs and the alcohol. You know what I mean.
Where are you from?
Colorado, originally. I’m a country boy. I moved here in ’99, and in 2011 I quit drinking.
I’m going to write this because maybe it will help somebody.
Yeah. If anyone needs something from me, they can reach out if they hear my story. It’s just nice to know that even if you make a mistake and hit rock bottom, you still can build everything back up.