triad dj profile
DJ handle: Just my name, Jason Perlmutter.
What I play: Funk and soul, mostly. Sometimes rock and gospel.
Upcoming shows: July 23 at the Crossroads event at SECCA. Jonathan Kirby will be DJing as well — we plan to spin all North Carolina music — and a reunited Odyssey 5 will be performing, along with Ronnie Levels & his Genius Band and the Dynamites featuring Charles Walker. SECCA asked Jonathan, a chief contributor to my Carolina Soul website, about the possibility of a collaborative event focusing on soul music and Winston-Salem music history. Jonathan put former members of Winston-Salem’s Odyssey 5, who made an album back in the ’70s, in touch with current Greensboro soul outfit Ronnie Levels & his Genius Band. In addition, Jonathan and I have curated a display of Winston- Salem soul albums that will hang at the museum for the event.
Got in the game: I became a DJ in January 2000 when I joined the staff of WXYC 89.3 FM, the student-run radio station of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It was the second semester of my freshman year.
Why I do it: I had never thought about DJing per se, but I liked music, and WXYC was known as a good place for learning about all kinds, from all around the world. Turned out that playing records to people was fun, too.
First pro gig: I can’t remember exactly, but it probably came in 2001 or 2002. Sometime back then, I started playing at the Solid! soul dance party, which was founded by Mark Weddington, AKA DJ Marco, and held at various venues in Chapel Hill, Durham and Raleigh for a number of years.
My style: I’ve never picked up any technical skills like beat matching or scratching.
I play songs in their entirety and focus on feeling out a track-by-track flow that makes sense.
Signature mix: My favorite mixes were these homemade compilations of forgotten North Carolina gospel and downtempo rock ‘n’ roll 45s that I made for friends as holiday gifts on two occasions a few years back. Since we’re talking about Winston-Salem, I’ll mention that one of these mixes had a killer 1970s gospel cut by a local outfit called the Salem-Naires.
Favorite albums: Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On”
My gear: Two turntables, a mixer and sometimes a microphone.
Website: Carolina Soul, a music history site, and Paradise of Bachelors, the online home of a record label that I co-own with my friend Brendan Greaves.
I’d like to add: These days I’m focusing more on collecting than on DJing; I’m having a good time picking up oddball 45s of all styles of music on North and South Carolina labels of the past. If any fellow collectors are reading this column, I’d love to hear from them.