In our mission to support the creative community, Hustlegrade will be posting a #CreativeOfTheWeek featuring creatives of all types! If you know someone who is or if YOU are an important creative force or entrepreneur in the community, nominate them by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
This week’s #CreativeOfTheWeek is Yobi Yobz; a multifaceted, multitalented individual who also happens to be a very important part of the Hustlegrade family!
Yobz holds us down at basically every event we curate and was recently officially brought on to our Hustlegrade team as Cultivator! From providing vibes to designing logos, Yobz does a lot of dope things, so let’s get to it!
Hustlegrade: How old are you? And where are you from?
Yobi Yobz: Ha, I should let y’all guess and laugh at the responses because no one can ever get that number right. I’m Twenty7/Twenty2, actually Twenty7 but most people think I’m Twenty2. And that’s perfectly fine with me. It’s probably because I hold the power of the youth in my sets. And I’m from the outskirts of Houston; Friendswood, Texas
HG: Who’s your favorite rapper of all time
Yobz: Kanye West, hands down. He changed the way I thought about music, College Dropout was sooooo inspiring. He was so hungry, so soulful, so passionate, that’s how I feel about my art and my creativity. Can’t nobody tell me I’m not dope. That’s the best confidence to have in yourself.
HG: Drums or flats?
Yobz: I love me some flats. I’d order all flats if they’d let me, EVERYTIME
HG: Does ketchup go in the pantry or the fridge?
Yobz: Good question. I think it really depends, I like my ketchup cold but I don’t mind it room temperature. I actually grew up with it being in the pantry.
HG: If you had to give yourself a title, what would it be?
Yobz: Lord of the vibez, duh haha, come take it if you dare.
HG: In one sentence, what would you say that you do?
Yobz: I’m a creative genius. I know a lot of peoplel are gonna be like ehh, but I am and it is what it is. I feel like that describes me as a whole.
HG: How and/or why did you start DJing?
Yobz: When I started it was on accident; I kinda got thrown into the fire. I was at a party that I wasn’t even supposed to be at and had to fill in for my friend’s pops who went on an extended bathroom break. Shit was amazing, it just happened to work. I didn’t know anything about mixing or anything I just knew what to play. I had a limited selection of music but I made it jump.
I started taking it more seriously when I got to high school and have been collecting music since ‘06. Now I continue to DJ because honestly, it’s my therapy. And it can be therapeutic for anyone who comes out and catches a vibe. I love to have fun and if I can make you forget about all the bullshit in your life and just have fun, for just that moment, that’s what I live for. Through music I am able to create a whole vibe, and be able to send people on a musical journey. I take sound selecting and mixing very serious, I know what songs are hot and I know to an extent how crowds are going to react when they hear certain songs; whether it’s their first time hearing it or they’re hearing it for the 30th time
HG: What's your favorite kind of music to play?
Yobz: I love all types of music, my favorite literally depends on the day. Typically I’ll make myself focus on one certain genre to find new stuff or catch something older that I don’t have in my arsenal. But I love hype, turnt up energy type of music though, that’s my favorite kind of vibe to set. That would include trap rap, house music, and Top 40’s, to name just a few. Anything that will make you dance is my favorite type of music to play.
HG: You like when people make requests or nah?
Yobz: Uhhhhh haha... Not really, I mean I’ll take them into consideration for sure but whoever booked me for the event trusts me enough to hold down the vibes so, you should too. Trust the process. I’ll probably end up playing the song you wanted to hear anyway and chances are the request doesn’t mix well with what’s going on at the moment.
HG: What genre(s) of music would you like to get more familiar with?
Yobz: There are actually a couple of genres I wanna get more familiar with! I’m open to any guidance from anyone who is knowledgeable about the Island Vibes and the Latin music; I dove in already but right now I just know what sounds good. I feel like I’m starting to be asked to do a lot more than before, it’s a challenge and I love me a good challenge. Not many DJs are as versatile as I am, so why not work to keep that up? I have been DJing at Alley Kat on Thursday nights and am under strict no rap rules which forces me to keep the energy up through other vibes, it’s dope. That kind of thing makes me a better DJ, I feel like.
HG: What other passions do you have?
Yobz: Ha, I have a couple! Obviously music is a big influence on my being, so besides DJing I produce music too. I also have a passion for and currently do video editing and design. I design things from tees and kicks to logos and abstract art pieces, not a lot of people know that actually. It’s pretty cool, like my ace in the hole. I have a very strict eye for detail. And to me it’s like, yeah I do this music and you’ll find out I do visuals if you ask the right questions.
HG: Who are some of your favorite Houston artists?
This question feels like a set up! Nah for real because it’s always someone who gets left off and you gotta be like “ah fam you know it’s all love” over and over. Haha no but it really is but hopefully I do this right...
Wes Blanco, Retro Kash, Dice Soho, WhyJae/Lil Rarri, Tim Woods, Billy Racxx, LunitikNovae OG Shyne and Noie J, Wolfe de Mchls, Izzar Thomas, OG Chess, Enzo VVS (he not from the H but I met him here grinding, his shit slaps), Dylan Cohl, Rizzo Rizzo, Sauce Walka, Squalla, Tobe Nwigwe, Ronny Kash... I know there’s more but if you don’t know who those cats are, they are definitely worth the spin. We got a lot going on in the city and people tend to look over us but it’s here, from where y’all got y’all swag.
HG: What organizations or brands are you are affiliated with?
Yobz: Ummm brands or “cliques”?! Because that’s such a touchy subject too! Especially being from Houston where cliques matter. And is it me or is it controversial as f*ck in this interview?! But I tend to stay away from “cliques” or should I say joining them. It’s hard to be your own person when someone is worried about if they are going to shine as bright as you. I love working with people that are genuine, we don’t need to be in competition with me. We can save that for what it is.
But I’m affiliated with a few brands Hustlegrade is one. I’m not toooooo sure this is how I got the interview, butttt I’m pretty sure this is how this interview came about, but it’s all good. I like what they bring to the table because there are a lot of music platforms that are biased as fuck and a lot of true talent won’t get displayed unless they are on your pay roll. I know that they have a live open show every last Sunday of the month that any artist can submit to and have a chance to perform in front of a live audience, with a live drummer and me spinning! So you know issa good time.
Blank Studios is coming soon with different dope designs and lifestyle pieces I’m excited to be a part of that as well.
I also DJ for a few of the artist that I mentioned before and I’m officially affiliated with Rizzo Rizzo, Ronny Kash, Retro Kash, Wes Blanco.
I’m always looking to collaborate and build, that’s they way of the world. Networking is key. So if you tryna build let’s build!
HG: Anything else you'd like people to know?
Yobz: Uhhhh yea I have a dope ass podcast that airs every Wednesday morning at 9 am. Y’all should definitely check it out @TheUpperRoooom dope music and topics for daze. And the on air personalities are charismatic and has a different flavor that what your used to. We next! (Listen to The Upper Roooom here.)
For the record, we wanted to feature Yobz before we brought him on the team and NO our questions were not controversial! Ha.
But seriously, huge shoutout to Yobz, his work ethic and commitment to his craft are admirable. Make sure you check him out and book him for any event you want to be super dope.