Mr. Eaton on His Addiction to DJing and How He Bombs Around Town in "The Jambulance"
DJ Mr. Eaton
Corey Eaton is a fairly straightforward guy. He doesn't rock a clever or overly pretentious DJ moniker and tends not to put on any airs about himself or his chosen profession. The 35-year-old -- who maintains weekly residencies at several of the Valley's Dos Gringos locations, as well as Fat Tuesdays in Tempe -- simply enjoys the thrill of being behind a pair of turntables spinning up crowd-pleasing hits for flocks of clubgoers.
This past Monday, Eaton worked the biggest gig of his 11-year DJing career when he performed at the Sixth Street New Year's Eve Block Party in Tempe for more than 3,000 souls. It was pure bliss for the selector as he got to drop Top 40 hits and watched the crowd get its groove on - including eight-year-old b-boy wunderkind - as 2012 drew to a close. We recently spoke with Eaton about the experience, as well as his unabashed passion for DJing and his pimped-out ride, a flashy Honda Element he's dubbed "The Jambulance."
Name: Corey James Eaton
AKA: DJ Mr. Eaton
Everything. For me, when people come see my shows, there's nothing I can't spin. I don't stick to one genre. There's a lot of DJs out there and I respect them all but people come out to my shows expecting to hear everything. From Too $hort to Tupac, from R. Kelly to Flo Rida, to Skrillex to Guns 'n' Roses. It depends on my crowd.
Current gigs: Monday nights at Dos Gringos in Tempe, Tuesday nights at Jersey's in Chandler, Wednesday nights at Fat Tuesdays in Tempe, and Fridays at Dos Gringos in Chandler. Also the occasional one-off and pick-up shows.
What's your mantra when it comes to DJing?
What I do, I'm kind of a party DJ. I read my crowd really well, what I tell people who ask me what do I spin, and I say there's nothing I can't spin. I'll throw in some country if I have to. It just depends on my crowd, because my crowd is my passion, my crowd is my soul, my crowd is the reason why I DJ. I'm not the kind of DJ that flat out says, "I'm not gonna play that for you." That's why I've been doing this for 10 years, I just tripped and fell into it. I Just have this passion for music. It's even tattooed on my body for a reason. I love all types of music and I adapt to my crowd.
What are your best skills?
My mic skills. When I got into this business and met my business partner, I started as a hype man. I had a cordless microphone and was the host. When people came in I took care of them, make sure they got drinks, got the music they liked, got a seat, and had a great time. And lo and behold, I eventually became a DJ and kept going and going with my mic skills. My partner was a DJ and a hype man. He taught me what he knew, then he retired and I took it from there. I just learned from all my DJ friends, picked up my skills, and have been going ever since. My heart and soul is the mic: Hyping up the crowd, having a good time, and keeping the energy going. I just want to make sure that everyone is having fun, no matter where I'm at or what I'm doing.
Describe your tattoos.
I got two music notes on both sides of my arms. My headphones are literally tattooed on my right arm. I'm getting ready to get half-sleeves done with a turntable and needle going into my vein, because DJing is my drug. If I don't DJ for four days, I don't know what to do with myself. I just went back to Kansas for the holiday and I got to DJ there. I've DJ'd in Maui. I've DJ'd in the Virgin Islands. If I go on vacation I need my tables. It's my life, it's my heart, and it's my soul. Entertaining is my world.