DJ AYO VIP is taking Greensboro by storm
Featured photo by Joe Scarborough
By: Angelica Grady
DJ AYO VIP aka Vallinda Persaud is taking over Greensboro’s nightlife scene little by little while turning the heads of partygoers all over the city. Persaud is a 28-year-old DJ, singer, and rapper who was originally born in Toronto, Canada. Since she’s had the opportunity to move around, so she has experience with diverse cultures and party scenes throughout the North American region.
Persaud got her start DJing as a student at the East Carolina University student radio station, WZMB 91.3 in May 2010. She has been a DJ ever since, but DJing wasn’t her first passion. Persaud is originally a singer and rapper, and DJing was something that she fell into by accident. Over time, she learned that nobody gets paid to rap but plenty of DJs that get paid to play music. “So why not kill two birds with one stone?”
Since then, Persaud has lived and played events in Miami, Atlanta, Charlotte and now Greensboro. Persaud feels something that sets her apart as a DJ is that she is self-made and multitalented. Not only does Persaud make her own music, but she also shoots and edits her own video content, and does canvas art, which is displayed in the Center for Visual Arts in Greensboro. Her infectious and high-energy while on stage draws the crowd in, and she said her love, passion, and knowledge of music alone is the fuel that drives her. Persaud reminisces on her most significant accomplishment up to date as DJ, which was DJing at Moogfest where she opened up for Pete Rock and Ali Shaheed Muhammad (DJ from A Tribe Called Quest).
“Brings tears to my eyes still,” Persaud said of her Moogfest set. “Most humbling experience I have ever had and my biggest DJ career opportunity to date for sure.”
Persaud said she never imagined she would have the opportunity to play with those hip-hop legends, and that her set was amazing and the crowd was giving her great energy.
“Some were dancing, but what’s more weird is most people were just standing and staring like they were amazed,” she said. “Folks treated me like a celebrity afterward and wanted pics. I didn’t have the heart to tell them that I wasn’t somebody famous.”
As for the future, Persaud’s ultimate goal for her career as a DJ would be to play large festivals overseas and earn recognition for producing her original music, similar to what “Diplo has done with Major Lazer or DJ Khaled.” Persaud wants to share the love she has for music and to share “that natural high” music gives her with others.
“Music is a universal tool, a universal language and I want to use my platform to create unity and spread love and open up peoples’ minds to other cultures,” she said.
Be on the lookout for DJ AYO VIP playing every Saturday night at The W on Elm Street and her “Dancehall Hip-Hop Bashment Party” Friday on Aug. 17 at the Artists Bloc, located at 1020 W. Gate City Blvd.