Written by Pauline Hunt
NZ Born of Samoan descent
Where to start. My name is Pauline Hunt and I’m a proud Samoan. Oh, I’m also a DJ.
Yes, I’m an actual Disc Jockey who uses turntables to spin music on and also go by the name of DJ eMerge. I guess when anyone is thinking of a DJ, they also imagine a male behind a pair of turntables or CDJ’s. Such a rare thing to see a female behind them, but believe it or not, the trend is growing and I love seeing more female DJ’s.
My strong passion for music begins at 5 years old when I got to star in my first musical production where I was a singing Christmas Tree LOL. Since then, it has continued to grow without slowing down. Growing up, I learnt how to play the keyboard, the recorder as well as trying to improve my voice. High school came along and I took music as a subject, with singing as my main instrument. At that age, I was writing and I really wanted to produce my own songs where I would try to be the next Alicia Keys. I finished high school and went on to study at Uni. Unfortunately, music didn’t follow me there..instead I ended up studying Social Science at AUT. But music was never far from my thoughts..and my heart, where it had a special place.
Being of legal age to hit the nightlife, I discovered clubbing and of course, dancing goes in hand with music, so off I went. To be able to enjoy moving my feet and shaking my hips to some of my favourite beats, while enjoying myself with good company and alcoholic drinks flowing in my system. I would always lose myself while I was out. I loved it. I felt I could escape the real world.
While home on a (rare) Saturday night, I found a show on C4 at the time and I thought it was the best thing EVER! Someone was DJ’ing in my own home..but with video clips!! I was so impressed as I had never seen anything like it before at the time. The man behind the video clips was Peter James. The music selection was on point! From then on, I never missed a show.
I then found out he had his own show on Mai FM. Again..music selection was SO good! My cousin and I ended up following his music selection to the clubs and it was from there that I knew, that DJ’ing was something I wanted to do. My cousin and I would go to the clubs that he was usually DJ’ing at, just because we knew the music would be awesome and we were guaranteed a good night. After watching him and several other DJ’s, learning how to use turntables became more and more interesting and something that I really wanted to learn. I ended up becoming good friends with Peter and his brother Frankee..who was also a DJ, and I would try to teach myself in my head while watching them LOL.
I ended up taking a short DJ course at MAINZ where I was taught by Chaz Anae (who was a great tutor) and from there, I knew DJ’ing was a passion that was going to stay in my life. One night while Peter and Frankee were setting up for one of their nights at Bacio Bar that was on K-Rd, I jumped on the turntables and started ‘mucking’ around. They ended up asking me if I would be interested in playing the opening set for them from 10-12am..and of course, I said yes! I started DJ’ing regularly every week..in a club even! They helped get my foot in the door, and I will always be grateful to them for giving me that opportunity.
They also gave me my first turntable for my birthday one year and eventually..I managed to save money to get my own setup where I could practice everyday at home.
So that’s my story. That was about 7-8 years ago and I’m still DJ’ing today. I don’t DJ in the clubs as much as I used to anymore..mainly private gigs now. I normally play hip hop/rnb and old school..but am quite open to other genres. I’m not complaining though, as I love being able to set the mood for the night ahead as well as help make sure that everyone has an awesome night.
I don’t consider myself special just because I’m a female in a male dominated industry. If anything, I prefer for my skills and talent to be the centre of attention rather than what gender I am. I do get reactions from time to time from people though, when they realise that I can actually mix and hold my own when it comes to DJ’ing. I’ve still got a long way to go however and I’m still learning and practicing every day. I still have a day job as DJ’ing is only part time..for now. Also..DJ gear is not cheap LOL.
I’m grateful for every opportunity I get and am always appreciative.
To my sisters who are thinking about having a career in DJ’ing OR music for that matter..never give up. I never imagined myself getting to the place where I am today but I’m here. Still expressing my passion in music. And age ain’t even a number as it’s never too late to follow your heart. I’m looking forward to what lies ahead. And I’m also excited for myself when it comes to my career in music. Never did I think that I would end up DJ’ing..and yet here I am. I still love DJ’ing as much as when I first started. That’s not going to change anytime soon.
My name is Pauline Hunt also known as DJ eMerge. And I am a proud Samoan Female DJ.