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DJ IZ: Are Degrees Worth It?

DJ IZ: The myths around degrees certifying you in the music industry, film industry. It’s a myth that continues to carry on somehow. And honestly, I’ve never hired anybody that’s had a degree in engineering or music or any…or what have you. I find that those are the most tainted folks. Those are the folks that you can’t get them to understand the environment of off the script, the feeling. This has nothing to do with technical. This is emotion. It’s what I equivocate to taking the book away from a string player and saying, “Man, let’s just play from what we feel now.” And that look of deer in the headlights and being lost. And the only thing that certifies you in these arenas of creativity is the real world. Being in a real session, being on a real film set, being in a real radio broadcasting room. There’s your degree. If you can mike a kit, you can load up a pro-tool session, you can get tones. The difference between a verse, a B-section, and a hook as an engineer, there’s your degree. To me, if I bring a guy who has this to validate him, he’s poison to me. That is…

Interviewer: That being a degree?

DJ IZ: Yeah. He’s poison to my creativity. I want the guy who, “Oh cool, he’s on that? Okay, cool. Oh, he’s…” “Yeah. See if he’s available.” It’s never, “Berkeley? Oh yeah, send him in.” Nah.

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