Being a DJ
After a semester at a junior college, Brian Buonassissi left school to become a DJ, a subtly smart choice given that music is so good for your health. He got his start working as an apprentice for a DJ manufacturer marketing manager. Within a year of his apprenticeship, he was DJ-ing in nightclubs in California.
Over time, he was booking night clubs across the United States, specifically landing private events in New York where he relocated to work full-time in 2011 as DJ Brian B. Officially he’s been in the business for 21 years. When he started, he was earning $25,000 to $30,000 per year and now earns over $150,000 per year.His advice on making it as a DJ? Know your financial basics, practice the craft, market yourself (but make sure you have the skills to back yourself up).
With an open approach to his work, Buonassissi incorporates retro classics, pop hits, hip-hop, rock, reggae and house into the rotation. He interacts with the crowd through creative programming, which, to him means figuring out the vibe and adjusting as needed.Other than DJ-ing for the love of music, Buonassissi lives for the moments he creates through his work. Often working weddings, Brian is charged with being the soundtrack to some of the most tender experiences in a person’s life.
For one particular wedding, he found out that the father of the bride had stage four cancer and the event had to be rescheduled because she wanted her dad to walk her down the aisle. ‘In some cases, you’re bringing family members back together,’ he says, ‘and for some, it may be the last time they share a moment with certain folks.’ Salary: According to PayScale.com, a DJ’s salary can range from $19,885 to $236,718. Suggested skills: marketing, social media, music industry knowledge, creativity, software proficiency