Economics and statistics degree holder wins DJ of the Year in Groove Awards 2016


Raphael Nyamu, better known by his stage name DJ Ruff, bagged the DJ of the Year trophy in Groove Awards 2016.

Groove Awards gala was held at the Safaricom Indoor Arena in Kasarani, Nairobi on Wednesday, June 1.

DJ Ruff was pooled alongside veteran disc jockeys Mo, Krowbar, Sadic, Gee Gee and Tabz the Head Girl.

The Kirinyaga-born artist spent time with eDaily Wednesday evening when he revealed a lot about his win, education and future plans.

The last born in a family of four describes the feeling of triumph as great.

“I feel great. It is an amazing experience. That says everything is possible. The DJs I was nominated alongside are seasoned entertainers. Nonetheless, guys still voted for me.”

EDAILY: Did you expect to win?

DJ RUFF: I was 70 percent sure I would win.  My strategy of winning is connection with the audience. I don’t let fame get into my head. Close to 300 friends of mine wanted to come to the event with branded T-Shirts to show their support.

The moment I know you are interested in what I do, I will send you mixes every week on WhatsApp. Right now I send mixes to over 5000 people. God called me to facilitate the salvation of these people. I wasn’t called to become a superstar.

EDAILY: Who is your mentor?

DJ RUFF: DJ Krowbar. The reason I look up to him is because he is almost a complete package – he is a family man. Though I am not one, but the way he balances deejaying and family, I am left in admiration.

I don’t know anyone who has handled that better than him. Krowbar has helped me to make decisions on serious issues such as pricing for events.

EDAILY: What is your message to your competitors whom you floored in Groove Awards 2016?

DJ RUFF: My message to DJs Sadic, Mo, Krowbar, Gee Gee and Tabz is: we are soldiers of the same war. The competition is positive and it unites us in fighting a common enemy – Satan.

This does not necessarily certify me as the best – but it is just an appreciation. It doesn’t mean my competitors are not working. Most of them have bigger platforms than I do.

EDAILY: How many years of experience do you have as a DJ?

DJ RUFF: I trained deejaying in 2007 and DJ Mo was my classmate. When DJ Mo was completing his second month, I was in my first month.

People think my success is an event, no. I have been deejaying for ten years with breaks in between when I joined university to pursue a bachelor’s degree in economics and statistics at the University of Nairobi.

EDAILY: Is deejaying paying?

DJ RUFF: Deejaying pays. I have no reason to do an 8am to 5pm job. Though there are friends of mine who do the 8am to 5pm kind of job and receive good salaries. But the kind of money most university graduates are receiving is a joke. If you are living in Nairobi, what is KSh20, 000 or KSh30, 000? Honestly, I wouldn’t price that for one event.

EDAILY: Going into the future, what should we expect from you?

DJ RUFF: More events and more projects that include: radio shows, television shows, songs, reaching out to children at orphanages.

I rap too. I have actually recorded a song with JFAM called Kingdom Choir. The song is available on YouTube.

EDAILY: Are you planning to further your education?

DJ RUFF: I will be willing to pursue a master’s degree or a second bachelor’s degree if I find a field that is really relevant to what I am doing; perhaps a course in entertainment business.

I don’t think it is wise to chase after very many degrees for the sake of piling up documents in your house.

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