Derrick Jones, better known as DJ D-Nice, sought to bring melodic relief to the masses with his recent Instagram Live session. Dubbed “#ClubQuarantine,” the venue was packed cyber wall to cyber wall with figures like former First Lady Michelle Obama, Mary J. Blige, Diddy, Rihanna, Democratic presidential candidates Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, Oprah Winfrey, Missy Elliott, Jennifer Lopez, John Legend and many more.
While the event gained traction online, DJ D-Nice tells Gayle King of CBS This Morning that it began as something light and fun for his friends. “I realized that outside of missing my family, the other most important thing to me was the crowd, DJing for people,” he said. At four o’clock in the morning, he made the decision to host a gathering which he assumed would’ve just been his friends on Instagram. “The next day I hooked up the turntables and then I noticed the crowd started to grow.”
The moment he knew he had something legendary on his Serato was when Mrs. Obama graced the virtual party with her presence. After placing a previous phone call, the famed DJ (who’s been a staple in the DJ community since the 80s), said Mrs. Obama’s appearance was a pleasant surprise. “It’s not like I haven’t DJ-ed for her before, I just froze up,” he said. “I was like ‘I don’t know what to play,’ and then the music faded and I was like ‘Oh, I know what she loves. She loves Beyonce. Let’s play that.’”
Given music’s healing energy, DJ D-Nice said he wants these experiences to provide some hope in this time of uncertainty. “I wanted people to feel good,” he shared. “I wanted their spirits to be lifted through music, just one song at a time.” The man of many hats has thrown a virtual party nearly every day since local governments have asked communities to socially distance. While this doesn’t exclude going to the grocery store, pharmacy, or fulfill other essential business needs, it’s being stressed that communities should remain in-doors or work from home as much as possible to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
DJ D-Nice said he’s going to keep it going for as long as it’s a necessity for virtual partygoers. The doors open once again at 6 p.m. EST on Monday (March 23).