Today we’d like to introduce you to Joe Rivera.
Joe, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Being a grandson to a professional dancer and a nightclub singer, music is in my blood. Growing up in south Los Angeles (Compton) there was not much for us to do during the summer breaks. I was lucky enough to have a group of friends in the neighborhood that loved to break dance and listen to music. I purchased a music mixer from a friend of mine and borrowed two turntables, one from my grandmother and the other from my Uncle Jesse and began mixing records and recording mixes for friends and family. The first party I performed at was for a 5th grade graduation in 1986. My friend and I kept everyone dancing for 2 hours straight. We only made $20 dollars that day but that was quite a bit of change for two 13-year-old kids from the hood. I was hooked! My dad got me the gigs and I performed them. From anniversaries to corporate celebrations, I was living my dream of performing and entertaining others. After attending a Las Vegas DJ Conference in 1995, my eyes were opened to the possibilities of stepping up my performance skills. Shortly after my first conference, I partnered with someone and created my first professional DJ Company in 1996. We created so many memorable events for our clients.
They truly enjoyed how we engaged their guests. In 2005, my partner and I parted ways.
In 2007, I began a partnership with a child hood friend from the old neighborhood. We consulted night clubs and performed at private events. This only lasted 2-3 years, because our visions of the future were not aligned.
In 2011, after a hiatus from being a DJ/ MC, I met a great friend who asked what I was passionate about, so I began talking about the emotion I felt while entertaining wedding and corporate clients. She asked why I stopped and said I was afraid of failing.
She told me not to stop doing what you are passionate about. I started ClassyFun DJ Entertainment in 2011, which is now Incorporated in California. This great friend became my wife and helps me with the day to day operations.
I now attend 2-3 training workshops and professional conferences per year to keep me abreast on wedding entertainment trends and ways to increase my skills and talents.
Along the way I became a certified coach which allows me the privilege to coach other DJ businesses in becoming profitable.
ClassyFun DJ Entertainment also partners with a few organizations such as Take Back the Neighborhood to empower inner city youth. “Love what you do & Do what you love.”
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I struggled with partners who took advantage of my kindness. There were always naysayers and negative people who did not believe you can make a living doing what you love. There were club promoters that were selfish and only took care of themselves and not the patrons or the DJ who created the environment to dance and get thirsty.
Capital was tough. Whenever you launch something new, building momentum was always difficult and challenging, but it allowed me get it down to a science.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
Everyone has a story.
Couples have a love story. Companies have a mission and a motto.
How a story is shared can make a profound impact on the result of any celebration.
For couples, it creates the context for each special moment of the day to be anticipated by their family and friends.
For corporations, it brings intimacy into the space we are celebrating in. Everyone from board members to the janitorial staff are on the same page of fun.
A celebration is a personal experience, which is why we believe entertainment should be as well.
We love learning about our clients and their celebration day to build a soundtrack that is both inspiring and accomplishes the ambience they are wanting to create. We also use lighting and prerecorded love letters to accomplish this. We usually meet and learn about our clients while enjoying a drink or cup of coffee.
What sets us apart is the way we direct, inform and guide our client’s day. Being the Master of Ceremonies for an event requires much preparation and knowledge. This is why getting to know our clients is an important part of our process. When the guests of honor are asked if we are a family friend, this makes us smile to know that we accomplished our goal in delivering the most personalized service during the most personal day of our client’s lives.
What were you like growing up?
Growing up, I loved entertaining with my cousins. We would use my mother’s clothes line (that thing to dry clothes before dryers) as a backdrop to our stage and lip synced to songs and performed dance routines. With the neighborhood friends, I loved playing baseball in the street and football at the elementary school across the street. I loved sneaking into movies with friends and playing video games on Atari. I really loved roller coasters at Magic Mountain and Knott’s Berry Farm and looked forward to every opportunity to go.
I was very comfortable with people I knew, but with those I did not know too well, I was very quiet and shy, which did not help my DJ business early on.
- Website: www.classyfun.com
- Phone: 949-478-4386
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/classyfun/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ClassyFunDjMc/
- Other: https://www.weddingwire.com/biz/classyfun-dj-entertainment-cypress/4c4a3d22cc7d30c9.html
Kevin Lee Studio