My club days might be behind me - for the most part - but I still like to listen to some of the top hits that get everyone at the club on their feet dancing. So many of those hits come from iconic DJs, and I was reminded of one of my favorite ones the other day when I came across an Instagram post for an upcoming Steve Aoki show. Steve and I go way back to my Power of Broke days, when I was sitting with talented success stories who had no monetary resources to get them to the top in their industries. My interview with Steve was centered around the specific moments that drove him to becoming the cake throwing DJ we see on social media, or in person if we’re lucky, and I knew I had to share this conversation with everyone who thinks that a lack of limitless money is what’s holding them back from achieving their goals. Check out this candid discussion for the eye-opening look at how being broke is actually your best asset.
Even if I’m not going to clubs every weekend like I used to, I still like to listen to some of the best DJs whose music makes the club experience a great night, and one of those DJs is Steve Aoki. I’ve known Steve for a while now, and it was amazing for me to come across an Instagram post the other day calling out an upcoming show he has & knowing that he’s still out there doing what he loves. The post actually reminded me of an interview I had with him a few years back that was centered around the specific moments that drove him to becoming the cake throwing DJ we see on social media, or in person if we’re lucky, and I knew I had to share this conversation with everyone who thinks that a lack of limitless money is what’s holding them back from achieving their goals.
Check out this all new episode for:
- The struggles Steve faced as he initially tried to pursue his music goals
- The scrappy ways Steve built a name for himself without any help from his father, creator of Benihana
- The origin story behind Steve’s iconic cake throwing at his shows
- An eye-opening look at how being broke is actually your best asset - and why Steve thinks he would have never achieved this level of success if he had been provided with funding from family
Who is Steve Aoki?
Steve Aoki is an extremely talented and fully self-made DJ, entrepreneur, and producer. And to top it off, he’s also one of the most humble people I’ve had the pleasure of sitting with.
Despite growing up the son of the founder of Benihana, Steve never expected or demanded handouts from his father, and his father was equally adamant that Steve carve out his own name for himself. While attending UC Santa Barbara, Steve was producing his own records and hosting underground concerts out of his student housing. He was so committed to music and production that he managed to build his own record level in his early 20s, called Dim Mak-a.
One of his first big breaks came in March 2010 in the form of a collaboration with Black Eyed Peas singer will.i.am. The song I’m in the House was a hit in both the US and UK, and just 2 years later he was the highest grossing dance artist in North America from tours.
As his music career was taking off, Steve also focused his attention heavily on philanthropy, going so far as to found the Steve Aoki Charitable Fund, which raises money for global humanitarian relief organizations and medical research. He’s won multiple awards for both music and his charity work, which proves that no matter how successful you become, you can always extend a hand to those in need.
Steve’s story is a perfect example of the power of broke and how a lack of money forces you to take creative risks (with high payouts). Listeners, be ready to walk away feeling ready to roll up your sleeves and crush your goals!
Listen on Spotify or Apple Podcasts
Catch the full episode on Apple Podcasts here: https://dj.daymondjohn.com/aoki
Catch the full episode on Spotify here: https://dj.daymondjohn.com/steve
Catch the full episode on iHeart here: https://dj.daymondjohn.com/steve-aoki
Host: Daymond John
Producers: Beau Dozier & Shanelle Collins; Ted Kingsbery, Chauncey Bell, & Taryn Loftus