D-Nice — a true hip-hop multi-hyphenate who’s worked as a DJ, producer, rapper and photographer — told Noah that the idea began when he decided to beat the boredom of self-isolation by firing up Instagram Live for the first time, playing some songs and sharing old stories with friends. One friend, DJ Clark Kent, encouraged D-Nice to actually start DJing over IG live, so he launched his Homeschoolin’ party last week and quickly saw the viewership skyrocket. His Saturday event drew more than 100,000 viewers, including celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Drake, Oprah and Michelle Obama.
“I froze up for a bit,” D-Nice admitted when he saw the former First Lady log in. “Even though I DJ’d for Michelle and the former president, it was still kind of surreal. I’m used to being in their world, and now they’re in my world; they came over to see what I was up to.”
D-Nice added that the sets he’s spun for Homeschoolin’ have been very different from those he’d play in a club because there’s no live audience to react and cater to. Everything, he said, has been from the heart, and he expects to keep following that lead once social distancing ends.
“I think that this is going to become the norm,” he said. “Other DJs have called me to say, like, ‘Dude, you reminded me of what it felt like to actually just play music that you love.’ So I think people are going to start incorporating that into their sets. And I think people were in that IG Live to hear me play and to experience it, and the fact that they were engaged — I played nine hours in there! — it was just fun.”
At the end of the interview, D-Nice said his next IG Live DJ set — which starts today, March 25th, at 6:30 p.m. ET — will be a partnership with Michelle Obama’s When We All Vote organization. “They came up with an idea to throw a ‘Couch Party,’ where we can galvanize people to register to vote,” D-Nice said. “It’s a party with a purpose.”