DJ Beverly Skillz
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DJ Beverly Skillz

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The best kept secret in music

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// Beverly Skillz //

Let me start out by saying that I wish every city had a Beverly Skillz. I had such an amazing time when I went to see her spin at Handsome Willy's.

She mixes only the best of old school, indie, and mainstream hip hop, along with the funk and soul classics. Her music makes you wanna jump up and start dancing. No. Really. Every city should have a Beverly Skillz.

What an amazingly pleasant Southern accent with an air of humor- her "Last Night A DJ Saved My Life" t-shirt caught my eye, and I wondered if people really understand how much DJs can change the lives of others.

The atmosphere was set off right as I walked in the door with some Atmosphere. Coincidence, possibly. I think she may have saw me walk through the door, and you can tell I'm from Minnesota with my long and loud ooooohhhhhs. I was immediately redirected to her impeccable talent. Not only was her record selection on point, but she was very impressive with her beat juggling. Word on the streets is that she started spinnin in '05 and only seven months after she began she went on to the finals in a battle she entered, wiping out several guys in her path. True school turntable terrorist.

The best thing about Skillz is that you can tell she loves what she does! It radiates from her. It is not just a job that she does to make bills. That may be a part of it, but it is the added bonus for her. I could bet money that she practices all the time in her house, possibly even forgets to eat sometimes because she is so wrapped up in her passion for DJn.

Being a woman in Hip Hop can be a challenge, but not one that Skills isn't up to tackle.
It does help when those around you support what you do and you have a award-winning mentor, Tony Skratchere. She rises to the occasion, which was noticed by the collective, femaleswitfunk.com. This collective was founded with the "mission of getting more ladies involved in the 'Art of Turntablism.' " She is in the midst of amazing talent such as DJ Kuttin Kandi, Annalyze, Tyra from Saigon & Killa Jewel. I have no doubt that she will continue rising to the occasion, and in fact, exceed everyone's expectations.

There have been several challenges since Katrina. One being getting people through the door at Handsome Willy's. If you are a promoter, musician or artist, you know what I mean. Handsome Willy's was really hard to find for us outts-towners but that didn't stop us. Ya'll must go out and support local music or your favorite DJ, in NOLA or in your hometown. You never know, they might need to save your life someday.

If you are feeling what any of these talented individuals are doing, tell them. Nothing compares to a good old fashioned compliment or thank you for doing what you do- Keeping the Hip Hop alive.

It's nice to know that people hear you and are feelin what you do.


For more information about Beverly Skills, visit www.myspace.com/beverlyskillz
or www.femaleswitfunk.com

Tata for now.
Peace and Inspiration,
B FRESH of B FRESH Photography - Myspace


nterview with NOLA Hip Hop Revival Project 10.24.07

So... I heard you can spit 16 bars off the top of your head? I heard you write lyrics like you breathe air? But can you get on a pair of 1200's and rock the crowd without saying a word? I bet I know someone who can, check out my interview with Ms. Beverly Skillz

D~Funk't: First off how did the Scratch Battle go?

Beverly Skillz: It went very well. I was encouraged to see how many people came out to support a true hip hop event. Tony Skratchere and I are looking forward to doing more events like these in the future. I've had some people contact me about doing a beat battle/production battle. Sounds like a good time to me.

DFX: What made you want to be a dj in the first place?

BS: Well, when my brother was in college he was a trance dj. That was cool, but I didn't really get into that. I avoided the whole rave scene for the most part. In 2001 I saw the X-Ecutioners live on stage at the Varsity in Baton Rouge. That show changed the way I saw deejays. I was seeing turntablism for the first time. They were using the turntable as a musical instrument. In 2002 I met Tony Skratchere in Lafayette. He was knee deep in that shit. He exposed me to underground hip hop, and the four elements. His crew, the Mad Cajunz, were throwing monthly hip hop jams at Bucknuttys Skate Park. After about a year I decided to get up on the decks. Around this time I met dj Lady Fingaz, and she encouraged me to step up. I knew I could be just as good as the boys, so I practiced a lot. The Mad Cajunz were mainly into battling at that time, and that's what I was exposed to the most. And my first appearance as a dj was at the Dillard University Battle hosted by Mike Swift in the spring of 2003. Tony Skratchere won that battle. I went on to battle in the Guitar Center battles and in DMC in Birmingham, Alabama. I knew that as a female dj, people would think that I was just a gimmick, which a lot of female dj's are, so I knew I needed to develop the skills to back it up.

DFX: In your own words, define Hip-Hop and what it means to you.

BS: Hip Hop is just one genre of music to me. (As well as a lifestyle…) But having said that, it defines a large portion of my life. Before I even became a dj, I was so immersed in hip hop anyway, that is just became natural for me to focus my energies there.

DFX: What MC's have you spun for in the past?

BS: I've never been anyone's official dj, but I have sat in with Swell, Impulss, Khansep, Soapboxx….I'm leaving some out, but it's been a while. I played with a band for a few months. That wasn't as fun as I thought it was going to be.

DFX: Before all this talk about Rappers, before their time, the DJ was the star of the show. Do you think things are getting better as far as people coming to a show to see a DJ, and what can be done to get more focus on up-and-coming DJ's out there?

BS: I'd like to see more rappers use the dj for more than just starting their beat. Give me a break, anybody can do that. If the rapper gives the dj some time to cut it up, then people would be more exposed to what a dj can do. I hate going to a show to see an MC and seeing the dj do nothing. Why is he even there? To back you up on the mic? Then, pull his ass out from behind the decks and get him up there with you and stop making him pose as a dj. What the fuck? Maybe some MC's don't realize the value of having some scratching in their music…I don't know.

DFX: What inspires you to keep going on?

BS: Knowing that my skills could get a lot better. I have a good skill set, but in terms of being the best, I have a long way to go. I also want to get into production. And I need, for the love of God, to finally finally release a mixtape. It's coming soon. I swear.

DFX: Who are the 5 most influential DJ's to you?

BS: Female: DJ Lady Fingaz (style & production), DJ Annalyze (dope ass cuts & mixing), DJ Shortee (professionalism, a pioneer & versatility) Tyra from Saigon (next level shit), DJ Killa Jewel (I learned chirp-flares from watching hers)
Male: Tony Skratchere (everything), D-Styles (style), X-Ecutioners (the whole package), Q-bert (pioneer), Derive (style, dope ass cuts), & Enfoe (next level shit).

DFX: If someone wanting to get into the art of DJ'ing what is the biggest piece of advice you could give them?

BS: Get up with other people who are doing it. And if you can't buy some DVD's. I recommend DJ Shortee's series. And practice. It really does help. Don't be afraid to come out to our sessions. You really do learn a lot at these. It really helps to see things up close. Also, once you start getting gets, learn to read the crowd and learn to keep them on the dance floor, it's so much fun.

DFX: What's in your CD player right now?

BS: None of my cd players work, and some dickhead stole my I-pod…..but I do have a shabby lil I-pod shuffle. Right now I'm really feeling the Bangfest mix by LudCHRIST. (myspace.com/worshipludachrist) and I - Myspace


Discography

The First Lady Mixtape 2004
Skillz is Bangin- The Mix 2007

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Deejay Beverly Skillz Bio

From the depths of the dirty dirty Beverly Skillz (formerly known as dj deIZM) has become a rising force in turntablism. She is a battle dj, party rocker, remixer, & soul searcher. She has accomplished so much in such a short amount of time. From the first time she placed her fingers on fader in late 2004, she knew it wouldn't take long for her to become a force to be reckoned with. She entered her first battle at the Guitar Center in New Orleans in May of 2005 (just 7 months of experience behind her). She was up against five other guys in the prelims. And she blew them all away and took first place. In the finals she had some formidable competition and took third. Against the advice of some, she jumped head on into the biggest dj competition in the country (and beyond): DMC. She battled in the American Battleground in Birmingham, AL. She and her two crew members Tony Skratchere and Antixs drove 7 hours to the competition. She battled against twelve other djs and tied for third with Sol Kontrol (but the judges gave it to him- well deserved). Not expecting to place as high as she did, Beverly Skillz continued to perfect her cutz, composition, and bad ass juggles for 2006. In May of 2006 she competed in the Krackernuttz Pepsi Throwdown in Houston, Texas. She beat out three other djs to advance to the finals, yet again. Make no mistake, she will not stop until she has a major title under her belt (and then she still won't stop!). Considering she is already advancing to the finals in all of her battles, it's only a matter of time before she becomes a nationally known name in dj battles... But the battle scene is not the only forum she excels in. This bitch can rock a party!! She blends electro, bmore, old school, indie, & mainstream hip hop, funk, soul, and disco into a party you'll never forget. And with a unique touch of killer cutz, aggressive mixing, and unique composition, it's a party you'll won't soon forget! She has played all over the south, and will soon be rockin it coast to coast. She has performed along side Black Sheep, Afro-Ra, Inspectah Deck, Planet Asia, Josh Martinez, Sleep, Know One, The Able Chris, Impluss, Truth Universal, Carl Cox, and Tittsworth just to name a few. She has held down a popular weekly in Lafayette, Louisiana from August of 2005 till May 2006. Moving to New Orleans in August of 2006, she quickly established two popular weeklys along side her crew member Tony Skratchere. She is quickly becoming the most sought after female dj in the south. It's easy to see Beverly Skillz is becoming an unstoppable force. Expect great things from her in the future when she will venture in production, promotion, and possibly her own business. A graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, she holds a degree in Architectural Design. Also a talented graphic designer & sketch book graffiti writer, her life has become infused in all the elements of hip hop. She has also done live cutz for many Louisiana MC's. She is also a featured dj on the top female turntablist site: femaleswitfunk.com where she stands alongside other incredible ladies such as Shortee, Tyra from Saigon, Annalyze, & Killa Jewel just to name a few. Be on the look out for this hip hoper!! Coming to a city near you!