Regarded as one of Washington DC’s best disc jockeys, DJ Alizay's life story is propelled by his love for the two turntables.
Turtntablist blood runs thick and deep through DJ Alizay’s family lineage, as his father and seven uncles all practiced the art in New York City during the 1980s. Inspired by his family, he began to fully own his craft at the tender age of 12. Growing up in Hyattsville, MD, he differed from his peers who preferred go-go to hip-hop. While his peers were listening to the funky sounds of Backyard Band, Rare Essence, and Northeast Groovers, Alizay was fascinated by A Tribe Called Quest, Nas, and Outkast. Despite his apprehension, Alizay continued to perfect his skills.
After graduating from high school in 1998, his popularity gained from DJing local parties earned him spots on Howard University's campus radio show and the University of Maryland's 88.1 radio station.
The following year, DJ Alizay secured a position with Radio One's 93.9 WKYS in Washington, D.C. At 19 years old, he became the youngest DJ on the radio and broadcasted live from reputable establishments D.C. like Dream (before it became Love Nightclub) and DC Live. In addition to breaking records on the radio, in the clubs, and becoming recognized as D.C.’s most notable DJ, he began to dabble in the music industry.
In 2004, D.C. rapper Wale approached Alizay at The Mall at Prince Georges. After listening to Wale’s music, he recognized his potential for stardom. This began his career in A&R, and he began managing Wale in 2005 through his company, Capitolville Entertainment. Through this venture, he was able to get Wale’s music onto the radio, alerting the nation to the talent present in the D.C. area.
After gaining notoriety, they were blessed with the opportunity to join the Rock the Bells tour in 2008. What’s more, Alizay and Wale gained international experience by traveling to Australia for the Good Vibrations Music Festival. While touring together from the United States to the United Kingdom, they supplied sold out overseas venues with true hip-hop. DJ Alizay has continued to take his craft global, spinning at the Mix Show Power Summits, where he’s a three-time “Mix show DJ of the Year” nominee in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. What’s more, he’s appeared at the BET Jazz Festival in Turks and Caicos.
As a DJ who predates the digital era, his knowledge of what will rock a crowd matched with his careful selections make him an elite choice for a broad range of events and clients. In April 2012, he spun at President Obama’s first fundraiser for his second term in office, and later performed at a couple of private events for the Democratic National Convention. From playing music for the President to teaching LivingSocial classes with Biz Markie, DJ Alizay remains one of the most respected DJs in hip-hop history and has no intention of relenting. DJ Alizay’s love for music is something he believes should be shared with everyone, and he remains driven by his passion for hip-hop culture and the community. What’s more exciting is that he’s just getting started.
But regardless of what the future holds, don’t think he’ll change. He asserts that no matter how much fame he attains, he’ll “always be ‘Isaiah’ first.”