The term ‘DJ’ has many meanings but as the term disc jockey probably originated from the person who played vinyl records on the radio; one uncomplimentary definition suggested it was “for those on the radio who fill the time between songs with nonsense chatter that is irrelevant or the weather.” Of course there are a myriad of other definitions including Dinner Jacket, Dear John (a break up letter), Don Juan, Dust Jacket, Davey Jones (locker) or even District Judge.
The Urban Dictionary goes into other more risqué meanings, some of which we can’t repeat. To a DJ: “What do you do?” “I’m a musician–I’s a DJ” (ibid) “You’re not a musician, you’re a music thief–you’re a record player player!!!” (Henry Rollins) In more recent times a DJ has been transformed into a real entertainer. Initially blending recorded music in harmony and adding a scratching effect into songs using two turntables and a mixer at parties, the modern DJ is now a ‘Digital Jockey.’ The days of bumper stickers demanding ‘music from a band, not canned’ are well and truly over.
The modern DJ is a skilled manipulator who mixes music from multiple sources and produces a continuous sense of feeling and rhythm and quality sound. No longer from vinyl or Compact Discs but with USB digital storage being a best friend. The distinction between musician and DJ has now become blurred, particularly when the synthesizer, keyboard, drum machine, sequencer and sampler have become the instruments of choice in many musical styles, including on stage. The modern DJ may also make use of such digital means of manipulation in their form of entertainment. Those who claim to have DJ status but only replay tracks without being ‘hands on’ with their own interpretations are regarded with some distain from those who are real performers. Typically professional DJs have a pseudonym; the initials DJ followed by a nickname. Our introduction to this world was from ‘DJ Smiley’ AKA Uthaiwan (Ammy) Wongwan.
The name Smiley is for obvious reasons (from the owner of Q Bar, BKK) and the smile is very genuine and infectious. Apart from the Q Bar, DJ Smiley has been featured at Lebua and Distil Cocktail Bar at State Tower Bangkok for around 7 years and has been performing since 2002. For the past 3 months DJ Smiley has been resident DJ at ‘EAST’ Rooftop Bar & Lounge on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights. It’s a great combination of sophisticated sounds to match ambience of this new venue on the Hua Hin scene and to accompany the feature cocktails on offer. You may find a live band there on other nights.
‘Deep House’ is the music genre which is DJ Smiley’s main influence and really suits the late night scene. Its jazz-funk with touches of soul has the necessary elements for a hip, but not hippy audience. It has a smooth, stylish, and chic demeanor which can be infused to suit the tastes of a particular audience. Deep, House is certainly not heavy metal or 60’s rock ‘n’ roll. However the weekly commute from Bangkok, where DJ Smiley has other performance bookings, is becoming a grind. We would suggest that other Hua Hin venues wanting to introduce this ‘Deep House’ sound could entice her to become Hua Hin’s resident DJ. Where: EAST Rooftop Bar & Lounge, G Hua Hin Resort & Mall Open: 5 PM to 2 AM Phone: 099 389 8675 Other Information: www.easthuahin.com www.facebook.com/smiley.bkk.3