JATEEN Bhana who is affectionately known as DJ Jay-B to his fans, is quickly becoming one of Port Elizabeth’s movers and shakers in the music industry.
But his creative abilities are not limited to only DJing. Jay-B illustrates how much hard work goes into transforming one’s self into a recognisable brand in Port Elizabeth.
This “proudly Port Elizabethan” was raised in Malabar and has been exposed to music from a young age – mostly due to the influence of his brothers, Vimo and Miles.
Bhana elaborates that his “household was musically inclined, with my one of my older brothers playing the guitar and my eldest brother also being a DJ [DJ Vimo]”.
With these positive influences in his life, seemingly, he had no choice but to follow suit. Bhana candidly recalls that he used to sneak into Vimo’s room and work on mixing music in order to sharpen his skills.
One of his first jobs was playing for the school cafeteria radio station at the age of 15, until he turned 18, and was able to branch out and play at nightclubs.
This opportunity opened doors for him to play at festivals and other numerous big stage events. One of the highlights of his career was playing along-side some of his heroes in house music including Tom Novy, Roland Clark, Fatboy Slim and Kasakade during the 2010 World Cup festivities.
Another unforgettable experience was jetting off to Malawi to play at the Elev8 Festival. Bhana manages, produces and is part of a band called Down By Law.
He plays all the music and DJs in their live shows. The band is comprised of vocalist, Tiffany Oostuizen and saxophonist, Joash Soobramoney.
Bhana’s business acumen is not limited to music as he also owns a footwear business in Pier 14 called Fashion King.
Bhana observes that “the industry is undoubtedly oversaturated because everybody wants to be a DJ – as equipment and music have become easier and cheaper to obtain”.
He suggests that if one wants to be noticeable, they should stray away from the conventional methods. He expands that one could incorporate elements of live music and create an act rather than just DJing. This can be done with new Midi controllers, loopstations and other gadgets if one is unable to access musical instruments.
Jay-B is definitely a name to look out for, as he shows no signs of slowing down.