Walt White, owner of the Global DJ Academy, has turned his dream of sharing electronic music with the world into a daily reality. White founded the Global DJ Academy in Denver to become a hub for aspiring DJs and music fanatics to learn, create, and inspire. The Global DJ Academy is a state-of-the-art, 2500-square-meter learning facility with two music production studios, a soundproof recording booth and a classroom with six workstations, all of which are equipped with the most innovative DJ technology available today. They offer both basic courses and more professional production courses, private lessons, and even fun “Learn to DJ” birthday parties.

White has gone through many different paths on his way to becoming the owner and creator of the Global DJ Academy. From computer programming to speed skating to Olympic coaching, White is a man of many talents. And next Sunday, on the first date of the 303 Magazine Summer Pool Party Series, DJ Walt White will share his passion for electronic music with pool party fans ready to come down. The busy DJ took the time to chat with me about EDM, DJing, the academy, and the future of electronic music.

303: You’ve had a pretty colorful career. Your parents were musicians, you graduated in computer programming and then became a racing cyclist and world number one speed skater. Then you’ve decided to become a DJ and now you own the DJ Academy. How did these roads lead to where you are now?

Well, I grew up in an environment of amazing musical talent. My mother is one of the best oboe teachers in the world. My father’s marching bands have won many championships. And they’re both accomplished professional classical musicians, so teaching and performing music is a part of my life.

My dad was also an accomplished skater and trainer, and we even owned a skating center for a while … so skating was a big part of my life too. After I had started a family, I could no longer keep the time invested in cycling and switched to the trainer at the Olympic base and to personal training. So teaching has always been my strength.

My college degree is in Computer Info Systems and I’ve always had the ability to work with computers…. So, for me, electronic dance music, which is most commonly produced and performed on computers, was a natural progression. I was introduced to EDM by a friend and it just clicked for me. I followed it with 100% effort and performed within the year. I had big problems figuring out how to hang up on my own and I was really disappointed with the lack of resources to teach EDM performance. So this is where the academy comes in.

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303: You fell in love with electronic music decades ago, what does it mean to you that it has become such an integral part of music today?

It’s a great honor to work with these great shows and great artists. I learn more every year and I get this

I have the privilege of passing this knowledge on to my students. It’s a real win-win situation.

303: Your company was named Westwords Best of Denver in 2013. How exciting was that title for your intellectual child?

Well, winning the best of Denver in Westword wasn’t so much because I was better than everyone else. I really am the only person in town who offers this type of education at this level. The price was for a breakthrough with a new frontier in music education. It was therefore a great honor to be recognized for this achievement. I have been working on this project for about 5 years and am positioning myself in the industry. It’s great to see how it all finally comes together.

1903303: How different is the transition from DJing to DJing others?

If you want to stay on the ball as a teacher, you have to perform well. The music and technology we use changes so quickly that you really need to be “in it to win it”. I bring my students into my performances and have them observe and sometimes even perform with me … so performing and teaching really go hand in hand for me.

303: With that in mind, how do you still find the time to hang up while you still find the time to teach?

I’ve cut my gigs a lot so I have time for my family and school. But I still manage to hang up a night or two a week instead of the five or six that I used to do.

303: Where do you see electronic music (industry / genres / market / trends)?

I think DJs will eventually have no genre boundaries, DJ equipment will be universally compatible and wireless, and hopefully in my lifetime I’ll see software advances to the point where the user just tells the computer what they want, and the software will adapt and optimize it automatically. So we don’t have to spend years working on a cumbersome audio software package.

303 Magazine: You’re hosting the FIRST pool party for 303 magazine in the summer series, have you ever been to one?

This is my first year throwing this party and it’s also the first year for the DJ academy and all of my students. We are also doing the second level which will be all DJ Academy students all day. I’ve heard from all of my friends that the party last year was excellent. I’ve run a lot of 303 Magazine parties and events and they are always top notch. I hope this one is the best so far.

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