Record Breakin’ with DJ Springer & DJ Fergie
Written By: Ashley Nguyen
Every Batman has his Robin and in those stories the duo always comes out on top. Larnelle Haynes and Mikhail Ferguson seem to have had a rhythm embedded in them from a young age. Growing up in the Burroughs of New York City when real Hip Hop was at its peak, access to inspiration was around every corner. Hip hop ran through their veins just as much as their West Indian Roots. Now known as DJ Springer and DJ Fergie, they have become a unique hybrid team on the DJ Scene. With an intelligent marketing scheme, a positive outlook and a fantastically energetic show, the duo has created a world of sound. Whether it’s Miami’s Power 96, South Beach’s biggest nightclubs or on the shores of Jamaica—these boys are making noise.
EDGE: Where did the names DJ Springer and DJ Fergie come from?
Springer: I come from a DJ Sound called King Tribes in Brooklyn. DJ Springer was a nickname that was given to me while I was in New York. Basically I’m always causing commotion at parties. Not negative, I just always get a “stir up” and entertain a crowd like a host. I treat it like a TV show but speak through music.
Fergie: My father was a DJ. He used to play in a Sound called Overproof. And I remember he was called Fadda Fergie. I hated the name “Young Fergie” and “Fergie Jr.”. Finally I said call me DJ Fergie. The name “ Fergie “ comes from my last name, Ferguson.
EDGE: Who or what has influenced your style?
Fergie: My dad. 100%.
Springer: It’s a mixture of 3 things. It’s based from me living in New York, growing up with Funk Master Flex and also the DJ’s in Jamaica like Renaissance and Tony Matterhorn. They all played with a level of class. Those DJ’s are the ones that influenced my style. At the end of the day nothing under the sun is new, it’s how you rise and go down.
EDGE: Why did you choose to work as a duo rather than individually?
Springer: Mainly because there’s not many who do it. The rule that stands out is that “Two heads are better than one”. We’re able to think faster and we bring more attraction that way. There are people that will like my style and people that will like his style.
EDGE: What other countries have you spun in and what place was your favorite?
Both: Jamaica or St. Martin.
EDGE: Was DJing always your ultimate goal or just a step to something greater?
Springer: I never set a standard for my ultimate goal. I like my ultimate goals to be—left open. But it is definitely the core of where I always wanted to be.
Fergie: DJing is the means to all of my goals. I went to school for aviation and I want to own a house with an airport behind it. DJing is my way to get there. At the end of the day whether I get into production or event planning and management, DJing is the main foundation for all of it. When all else fails and everything else goes away, DJing will always be there.
EDGE: How has power 96 in Miami impacted your career?
Fergie: It allowed us to reach different target markets that we weren’t touching before at a faster rate.
Springer: It gets you noticed more because you are representing a brand that has been around for so long and it is very community based. With that cosign and being part of that team, people embrace you a lot differently, more than ANY other station.
EDGE: Describe your typical week schedule.
Fergie: We’re out meeting somebody. Trying to network. Planning for our future shows. We are thinking of what marketing strategies we are we going to do, what events are happening this coming weekend, what events are we going to target? If we set up a mini tour: this city or that city? At all times there’s a focus on how we plan on moving forward.
Springer: Out every night, regardless if we’re DJing or not. Friday we start at Opium or Madhouse, that party has been around for over 10 years. Saturdays, we hop around. Sunday is day, again, that we go out. It really helps our career. And the other days we’re on the radio Monday through Thursday and Saturday Night.
EDGE: Do you two ever butt heads?
Fergie: We are always together. We always butt heads but at the end of the day, no homo, n***a, I love you. I’ma work it out whatever happens. It’s like any relationship.
Springer: Yeah I mean it is like any relationship. If you have the time, the common goal and the passion for it, there will always be conflicts. Not everybody handles all issues the same and we all have disagreements. But we have an agreement, since not everybody handles situations the same, this is my line of scrimmage and this is where I don’t cross that line and you don’t cross this line. We aren’t perfect, we understand that. We just keep moving. A lot of times people let butting heads become a problem. Just keep going.
EDGE: With all of the nightlife that can seemingly become a blur, lack of sleep and other projects, how do you keep up with fresh content and consistent excitement for every set?
Springer: We treat it like a job. We get up early every morning. We come home at 4 or 5am but still wake up as if it’s a nine to five to plan our marketing strategies.
EDGE: Best advice for future DJs?
Fergie: My advice is, number one: if you think there’s money in it you’re right but you’re also wrong. Money comes to those who love it but the money will come later on down the line. Number two: stay loyal to it. Loyalty is a huge part in your success. I mean loyalty like old school mentality worth. Not loyal for a day. Not loyal for a couple weeks—loyal for a lifetime.
Springer: To add to that, you have to study your craft before you take it there. Don’t just love the entertainment aspect of it. Look up the history, do your homework. In school I never used to like doing homework but now I am forced to do it through music. Learn about those who have been through it and what they have done so you know what it takes to be great. There is a method if you do your homework.
EDGE: Our best show was…?
Springer: The Best of the Best 2008 in Bicentennial park in Miami. It was our first time being in front of that big of a crowd of people.
Fergie: We went there with the intentions of only networking and talk to a couple artists and getting a couple drops. One of the guys asked us if we had our stuff and if we were ready to go. It was like “ wow, right place right time” and we got our time to shine. Not only did we shine, we OUTSHINED to the point we’ve done that show ever since.
EDGE: The ONE song that always gets everyone going, no matter how old it is…
Springer: Montell Jordan.
Fergie: (Laughs ) That’s the exact one I was going to say, “This Is How We Do It”. No matter where you are, what country or what culture.
EDGE: What are three random facts about you that the average fan wouldn’t know?
1) I Match to the “ T ”
2) I’m a real quiet person. I am the total opposite of when I DJ. I’m a shy person.
3) I’m half Japanese.
1) I’m a nerd. I love school, I’m really into studying flash cards all of that. I went to school for aviation. That pilot side of me is a whole ‘nother animal and big super nerd.
2) I cant play basketball for shit. But I could beat ya’ ass in volleyball.
3) Moments where I may be nervous you’d never know.
EDGE: The craziest thing a fan has ever done….?
Springer: Googled my number and called me everyday. No, no, no wait wait and a girl squeezed up in the back of the car for two hours and waited for me to be done DJing.
Fergie: There was this girl and I who went to school together in 06’. She said that she worked for this magazine company and wanted to interview me and all of this … come to the house and do a photo shoot and interview and all of that. She had the camera there and all the interview questions written out, everything. A couple months went by, I never heard nothing. A year went by I never saw the magazine. Then about 3 months ago I saw her again and she admitted that she had a super big crush on me and just wanted to talk to me. I wasn’t mad but I felt stupid. I found it funny.
Photos by: Kibwe Maono