The Many Faces of
Mario ” DJ CHONZ” Rodriguez
With April fast approaching, I had a chance to sit with our ‘Xtraordinary’ person of the month, DJ Chonz (also known as Mario), over crepes to ask him a little about what all he is known for and what he currently has in his sights for 2017 …
DJ Chonz has been a longstanding member of the Denver music community, to receiving a proclamation for “Hip Hop Week” from the City and County of Denver with his brother, Fienz Rodriguez. For 15 years, he was a resident DJ/Personality for KS107.5 where he was often rated #1, according to Nielsen Arbitron ratings in Denver.
Mario has been working closely for the past four years with the University of Colorado Denver campus to organize a scholarship focused on the music arts. The CU Denver Summer Music Industry Program is designed to offer high school students a view into what it actually takes to be a musician in the world today. The program offers four areas of emphasis … performance, songwriting, recording arts and music business. The scholarship, which is known as the DJ Chonz Scholarship, is focused on helping students that might not ever have this chance to attend this school. They would then be given the ultimate gift towards their future. The CU ‘In the City’ campaign allows him this amazing chance to help out others to get them moving towards their future.
As I took a sip of water, I asked him what one of his favorite memories were of some of the previous scholarship recipients and he said that overall, his most favorite would have been the very first kid to receive his scholarship for a couple of reasons.
The kid turned his life around when he got this chance, threw away all the bad that was holding him back and really focused on the music.
Truly touched that his goal was reached, he looks back on this moment and wishes that he could help to influence many more than just the few he reaches through the campus at CU. Possessing such a drive and talent, Mario is meant to touch many peoples’ lives and influence them with musical direction.
Fundraisers keep his dreams on path, raising money to fund the scholarship so he is able to continue to help others in their quest for a better life.
If you would like to donate, Scholarship Donations
Continuing on with the morning chat, I noticed a hat he was wearing and prompted him to tell me more. The hat said ‘Blend The DJ Institute’…. Knowing of one located in Las Vegas, I asked if he could tell me more about it. Chonz replied that he would be teaming up with them when they expand to Denver soon. Lending his experience to the students via a few selective classes, Chonz is extremely excited for this new adventure.
A first of its kind, Blend the DJ Institute was started in 2014 by a group of local veteran DJs and offers classes anywhere from beginning – advanced for DJing and music production. Offering traditional turntable vinyl to CDJ and midis and having an institute like this here in Denver is major news! The school will be making its way to Aurora, CO this coming April 1st, 2017, so if you ever wanted to learn from some of the best DJs out there, now is your time to sign up.
Given all this new information, I of course, am extremely excited for this DJ Institute to open as well!! Things have expanded greatly for Chonz. He has gone on to create bigger and better things and even creating a website for people to locate local talented DJs to make life easier on the person looking for talent. The website www.denverbestdjs.com holds all of Denver’s best DJs all in one spot. It allows you to choose the DJ based on what genre you are looking for to allow you the best fit for your event, and thus takes all the guess work out of it for you. If only all things could be that easy!
Wrapping up our brunch, I give him thanks for coming out and for all that he does with our community. Always reaching for the stars, yet remaining humble at the same time and helping others with his generous nature.
Was there any question why we would choose him as our Xtraordinary person?
If you would like more information on where to find DJ Chonz
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Photos by Teddy G / Xposer Photography