Seems like everyone these days wants to be a DJ, rapper, or marketing director of a hot new audio-streaming service. Too autobiographical? Probably. Regardless, whether you’re the next Virgil Abloh or Vashtie, having a fine-tuned radar for upcoming talent in your field will only keep your head that much more in the game. At the intersection of tech, media and music, there’s a new player: DJ TGUT .
TGUT performing alongside Raekwon of Wu-Tang Clan
Hand Me The Aux Fam:
Today he’s a touring turntablist, producer for artists like Curren$y or Casey Veggies, and Marketing Director at Audiomack — an online platform for both artists and fans that curates and ranks the newest hip-hop, electronic, and dancehall music in realtime.
Artists, whether they’re rappers, singers or DJs, can upload their music to the platform and have it instantly available to share, while fans have access to charts and playlists with the most current street-jams, often months before they make their way to any nearby radio station, playlist, or aux cord. So hand me the aux, cause I have Audiomack. ‘Pyro’ from Serato is fire too.
WHEN YO FRIENDS GIVE YOU THE AUX CORD pic.twitter.com/4ByRIIH7TK
— ♚ (@Fvnxy) September 15, 2014
Shots fired at other streaming services? No. Audiomack complements the giants of streaming. With over 5.5 million downloads on their mobile app, fans and artists use Audiomack to keep an eye out for the tracks you’ll be playlisting when they’re up on Spotify or Apple Music. And listen, I know we all had a bitter breakup with Soundcloud (it was so good, then it was so bad.) Eight-second previews? Are you shitting me? Let Audiomack heal that wound and nestle your eyes. Upload your work and know that it’ll still be online the following day.
With TGUT’s help, Audiomack co-founders Dave Macli and Dave Ponte created a monster that’s part platform, part product and entirely dope. In 2014 they saw a spike in traffic, with accounts being created by legends like Chance The Rapper, Young Thug and Future. Drake even uploaded IYRTITL to Audiomack after Soundcloud took the tape down.
Stepping into Audiomack’s SoHo office is a streetwear daydream: a large single room with a startup office on the right and a bumpin’ recording studio on the left. The fridge in its lounge enclave is stocked with La Croix and its studio computer is stocked with the freshest sounds — glancing out of their towering windows onto noisy Broadway makes it clear that all fresh SoHo clothing stores are dressing you for the same activity: chasing your dreams in the heart of NYC.
So, where does TGUT come into play? When artists like Madeintyo or Rich The Kid make their press runs through NYC, they often stop by AudiomackStudios to kick back and catch their breath from the corporate hustle of the city. Here, T greets them with a solo cup of their favorite drink, so they can relax and play some music. If the vibes are right, he’ll even collaborate with the artist on an original track. When it’s time to release the records, guess what platform is waiting right there to blow them up? Awesome facility aside, Audiomack separates itself from other streaming services with their humanity. They’re homies you can chill with.
When he’s not producing content for Audiomack and DJBooth, TGUT (born Taylor Guttenberg) uses the studio as a home for his musical collective: Doperoots. The collective is managed by young professional Clayton Barmore and consists of his longtime friend and roommate TJ Mizell, who’s currently A$AP Ferg’s tour DJ, DJ Rhetorik, Logic’s tour DJ, and Lenny Emery, who’s DJed for everyone from Usher to OT Genesis. On any given night you can find the studio cranking out heat until the wee hours of the morning.
From left to right: Nico Cruz (mgmt) Jesse Mizell (mgmt), TGUT, Clayton Barmore (CEO), TJ Mizell (Doperoots artist)
When he met his labelmate and best friend TJ Mizell in the adolescent jungle of eighth grade gym class, they instantly clicked over a mutual love of music. At 16, TJ was drumming in a post-hardcore band and TGUT had just received his first set of turntables as a birthday gift. The two spent their high school summers honing their craft at Scratch Academy — TJ’s dad’s DJ school. Plot twist: TJ’s dad is the late DJ Jam Master Jay, Run DMC’s DJ.
With only a passion for scratching, TGUT pursued DJing for the sake of the craft. It wasn’t until he began DJing at Old Dominion University did he realize the power at his fingertips. DJing ODU’s biggest parties four nights a week got him a gig as the official tour DJ for Hi-Rez. With the tour beginning the day after graduation, he felt #blessed.
One tour turned into a string. Before T knew it, he was spinning for Los, Cory Gunz, Emilio Rojas and the Peach Panther himself, Riff Raff. After a summer of touring, he packed up from VA and moved to Brooklyn to continue the pursuit of his dreams.
On a whim, Taylor DM’d one of his favorite blogs, DJBooth . Their team respected his wealth of DJ experience, and he respected their influential platform, so they met. After having his horizons expanded by an eye-opening trip to SXSW, he knew there was a future in music — so he wrote up a marketing plan for DJBooth as a job proposal. Fast forward a couple of months later and he is the Marketing Director at DJBooth, along with their sister site Audiomack.
These days the Doperoots family uses AudiomackStudios to track both today’s rap stars like A$AP Ferg and tomorrow’s rap stars like your lanky cousin. Rather than booking recording sessions as their main income stream, the Audiomack team uses the studio to empower up-and-coming artists with free studio time, and to create content like “Bless The Booth,” which catalogs rappers who come freestyle in their studio. With this support network behind him, TGUT’s been able to produce records for Casey Veggies, Slim Thug, Kirko Bangz and many more.
TGUT and RCA recording artist Tinashe
Moral of the story? Create a dope team and play hard.