There are so many people involved in how music gets listened to. You have the artists and the songwriters who collaborate on the lyrics and the sound of a song. Then you have your producers who help facilitate the songwriting sessions and give notes on what could be done. Then there’s the audio engineer who make sure that the song sounds great. Then there’s the band who plays the instruments. Then there’s the label. The whole distribution chain. A part of that distribution chain are DJs. You often hear them on the radio making banter with their co-hosts or the audience the slowly queues up the song that he’s going to play.
In the era where most people listened to music through the radio, DJs were an integral part of that. Aside from taking in requests from the listeners, they also share their own tastes through the music that the play in their timeslot. Sometimes on a long drive, I would just let the radio play. In a world where it’s so easy to find the music you want through either YouTube or Spotify, there are moments where I just turn on the radio and let somebody else play the music for me. It’s a thing I enjoy doing.
Wayne Williams is somebody who spent most of his life being a DJ in Chicago. Sometimes DJs are the tastemakers in a community. If a lot of people go to a club, they listen to the songs that a DJ like Wayne would play them. Sometimes the tracks that they play will get stuck in their heads and they will do all it takes to know what that song it. Exposing people to different types of music is something that a DJ does. Wayne brought music from underground clubs into to a larger audience. People seem to enjoy the breadth of music that he plays that he became in demand.
Somehow the demand from the general audience lead to Wayne starting a small collective formerly known as The Chosen Few Disco Corp. where he invited a bunch of other DJs to play music during parties and other events. From that emerged house music. Eventually Wayne started working for a record label that was focused on house music called Trax Records. He recorded a track under the name Dr. Derelict called “Undercover.”
That whole thing lead him to become one of the people in charge of A&R at Jive Records’ Chicago studio. Unsurprsingly, Wayne was also great at that whole deal. He was involved in the careers of Mr. Lee and even with the then-Fresh Prince Will Smith. It’s insane how much music played a big role in his life. It made so much sense that he was the person that handled the artists and repertoire arm of a record label. That part of the label is in charge with finding new artists and overseeing the creative careers of the artists in their label.
After spending time at Jive Records, he went to become the vice president of A&R at RCA Records. Despite having that big of a job at record label, he still finds time to host a set every now and then. I think you can never really forget your first love. His DJing skills is what got him to where he is today. A lot of people have seen the contributions that he made for the music scene in Chicago. In 2012, he and the rest of the Chosen Few DJs were recognized for their contribution to Chicago house music.
There isn’t really much else regarding DJ Wayne’s career after that. At this point, he has earned himself a net worth of about $5,000,000. He still keeps up with the music scene even now. I think you can never really away who DJ Wayne is. At the core, he’s a person who to share good music to the people that he’s around. And he can do that by curation a setlist that he will play at a party or at a club. Sometimes you just need one person to help you discover music. He mentions in an interview that his parents were the ones who introduced him to music.