PUBS and bars are the city's splurge scene. These places are the best spots for people who work dusk till dawn and the perfect hideout for social life and unwinding.
Although most people go to bars for the drinks and the company, they're also in for the music. And in dance and night clubs, pubs or bars, music is not there without its disc jockeys or better known as DJs.
You may have heard of the Banaag family of DJs: Cocoy, RB and Kyle, also known as Cagayan de Oro's DJ Royalties, and there's probably no one in the disc jockey industry who didn't know of DJ Mikael Grey, one of the top and most sought-after radio DJ in the city and who also earned the moniker "Rick Dee of the Philippines."
As a city that produces several skilled artists, albeit not yet that famous or recognized, Cagayan de Oro has more talented DJs who managed to pull a string of partygoers with their vibes and cool beats.
Just like everyone else, 29-year-old Bryan Grace Galarroza, known in the disc jockey industry as DJ Janza, built his careers from his dream and love and dedication to music. It has been his ambition to become a DJ when he was 15 and still under the tutelage of his father, who also played music back then. At the age of 19, he began his career as a professional DJ.
In 2011, he worked as a spinner at one of the prestigious FM radio stations in Cagayan de Oro City, My Only Radio (MOR).
However, Bryan shared, disc jockeying was not the type of career he expected to venture. As such, he worked as an assistant to the project engineers in Cagayan de Oro.
"Ang pag DJ is late na nako na discover nga gusto gyud kaayo nako," Bryan said.
In 2014, Janza won first place in the Mix Master competition hosted by MOR.
Janza usually plays Hip-hop, Twerks, RnB, House music, among others.
He said partygoers feeling alive in the bustling music is one of the reasons why he keeps on doing his passion.
"Dili nimo ma explain ang feeling nga kanang na happy sila samot na og imohang music ang gi play," Janza said.
He added that he wants to meet international artists and produce more music. He also plans to put up his own bar in the future.
The Tiny Spinner
Disc jockeying does not only involve randomly creating playlists and playing music to a crowd of people looking for a good time, it also entails keen ears for music and an ouch of spinning skills.
Twenty-four-year-old John Riey Paulin, also known as DJ Tiny, started pumping up the jam with his skills spinning turntable since 2010 at the young age of 16, while he was still attending college with a degree Hotel Restaurant Management (HRM) in his town in Initao.
He started producing music at the age of 18.
Tiny said that even when he was little, he already knew that his career path will always be into music because he loves to play and mixing it.
"Ever since man gyud bata pako is music lover nako tapos mao nadayun to didto nag sugod, nag practice ko unsaon pag mix og music," Tiny said.
In 2011, Tiny got his job at MOR, worked as music editor and events spinner, and in 2014 he began his job at Pulse Live as a full time DJ. He also won the MOR Mix Master competition in the same year.
Aside from being a DJ, Tiny put up business, such as recording studio and music studio in Initao.
Tiny, just like other DJs also received constructive criticisms from other professionals and artists. But instead of fighting back, he remained humble and motivated to practice and do better in his career.
He emphasized that despite of his ups and downs in his career, he has to stand up and continue to live his life, adding that self-discipline should be the 'bridge' between goals and achievement.
"Like daghan ups and downs pero kailangan I achieve ang dapat e achieve. Self-discipine lang dapat ang bridge," he said.
When asked on who he look up as a DJ, Tiny said his inspiration are mostly international artists or disc jockey like Zedd, Dimitri Vegas, Afrojack among others.
Tiny plays House music, Hip-Hop, Remix Love Song and Electro house-primetime, among others.
The Mixer Hobbyist
Mixing music was just a hobby, Kane Angelo Arcenas, also known as DJ Kane, shared, saying that his love for his music began when he was 12 years old.
"DJ mn akong papa sauna hangtud sa na cope up nako. Nag eskwela ko tapos wala nako nabantayan na niabot ni nga opportunity sa akoa," Kane said.
While he was attending his degree in Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering at Cagayan de Oro College (COC), Kane said he had to stop and do some soul searching.
It was not until in 2016 that Pulse Live offered him an opportunity to work with them as a full time DJ that Kane decided to stop attending school and pursue his dream in music.
One of the skilled and passionate DJs in Cagayan de Oro, Kane plays Twerk, House and Electronic Dance Music, Hip-Hop and House music, among others.
And just like the aforementioned DJs, Kane also won in a competition, getting the second spot on the MOR Mix DJ competition.
"Naa sa akong plans ang mag himo og akong own nga bar. Pero for now, mag produce sako og more music," Kane said.
Some started to consider themselves not just as DJ's but also artists.
Alex Damao or DJ Spiderman is not just a DJ but also considers himself as an artist.
Has been in the industry for 20 years, Alex began his professional career as a DJ when he was 22 years old and left school to follow his heart that beats in love and passion for music.
Before he took his full time job as DJ at Pulse, Alex had been a radio jock at Wild Zee FM for four years.
Being a professional disc jockey, according to Alex, is not just toting a laptop filled with music, software and a mixing table to modify the sound live. It means producing your own music.
"A DJ actually does much more," Alex said.
Just like most of the DJ's, Alex also wants to put up his own club in the future.
When asked for advise for aspiring DJs, Alex, who plans to put up his own club someday, said that you just have to make sure that you really are interested to be a DJ.
"If gusto gyud ka mag DJ, first is make sure nga interesado gyud ka sa pg DJ," he said.
DJs Janza, Tiny, Kane and Spiderman are among the full time disc jockeys in Pulse Live Club which operates from Mondays to Sundays.
Gladys Gaccion Opitz, owner of the pulse club, for her part, said she is glad to have their loyalty and dedication to work. Her husband Heiko, also a professional DJ, said that he's grateful for the attitude and respect they show not only to their co-employees but also to the customers as well.
Pulse Live Club will be celebrating its 12th anniversary this Friday, May 31.