DJ Prosper lives to entertain an audience and looks to inspire every time he takes to the stage. When you’re waiting between periods at a Sens game, y
He fell in love with music at the young age of 4 and has put together an illustrious career along the way. Even though he’s the Sens DJ during intermissions, DJ Prosper grew up a fan of the Montreal Canadiens in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s.
From working with his wife in their hip-hop group, to his clothing line, DJ Prosper has many projects to keep him busy. Prosper is the host of the Canadian Gospel radio show Power House Radio, where he gets to express his faith, something that means a lot to him.
We caught up with DJ Prosper to chat about splitting time between Ottawa and Montreal growing up, his journey to music and what projects he’s working on next.
You were born in Montreal; how much time did you spend there growing up?
I spent my entire childhood in Montreal. I moved to Ottawa in grade 6 for high school, then moved back to Montreal for my 2 years of college at Vanier, doing music with my then rap group, Technical Sense and playing Football.
Now you live in Ottawa, what are some of the differences you’ve noticed between the two cities?
First off, Montreal is a predominantly French city with a sense of community and support on its own, without looking for accolades from other provinces. The summers in Montreal are way more exciting; There are different activities and restaurants downtown and in old Montreal. Ottawa has way more opportunities to offer in terms of jobs with a high level to get into the government. Ottawa is a calmer city and family-oriented field, less risky and more conservative, but it’s changing. Ottawa Bluesfest outshines any of the Montreal festivals.
What influenced you to get into the music industry, and who are some musicians that inspired you?
Music has been in my DNA since I was 4 years old; Elvis Presley was my superhero (More the young actor Elvis movies version). I’ll never forget the day my older cousin brought me to his basement and showed me the Michael Jackson – Beat It video. It changed my life.
Fast forward to my High School’s first talent show; Feeling the reaction and energy of the crowd on stage with my group, Technical Sense, I never looked back. Some other musicians that truly influenced me as far as studying stage presence, charisma and crowd motivation were the Fugees and Busta Rhymes.
Then, what I call the golden era of Hip Hop (the 90s) was a huge era that inspired me.
You’re the Ottawa Senators DJ during intermissions; how do you enjoy that, and did you grow up a Senators or Canadiens fan?
Having the opportunity to spread love and unity amongst 15+ thousand fans every night is undeniable. It never gets redundant seeing the arena packed, getting up and dancing, having a good time with a smile on their faces waving their cell phone lights in the air.
Honestly, I grew up a Montreal Canadiens fan and experienced them win the Stanley Cup led by then-rookie Patrick Roy. The way we’ve witnessed the city partying after advancing to the Stanley Cup Final last year, multiply that by 10 when they won in ‘86. The team was stacked with all-stars and legends from Guy Lafleur, Larry Robinson, Claude Lemieux, Bob Gainey, Shayne Corson, Guy Carbonneau and more. The quality of players that the franchise would recruit was nonstop. Then it started crumbling slowly when the ex-players started getting into executive positions and made wrong decisions starting with Mario Tremblay, in my opinion, ha-ha.
You’ve been working in the music industry for over 20 years as a hype man for Ashanti, co-founding your hip-hop group GPM with your wife and as a DJ; what are some of your favourite memories or experiences over the years?
My favourite memories always go back to being on stage, travelling and changing people’s lives, hearing their testimonies after experiencing one of my concerts. From constantly rehearsing to perfecting a performance concept, I love seeing the crowd’s reaction after bringing it to life.
A couple of years ago, I got a request from a young man for me to DJ at his wedding. He expressed that I was the first-ever concert he had gone to, and it would mean the world to him for me to DJ at his wedding. Not only did it make me feel old, but it confirmed that I was doing the right thing and making an impact.
Faith is something you bring up a lot, and you host “Power House Radio” on CHRI 91.1. Why is this so important to you?
I don’t shy away regarding my faith because it’s a significant source of substance for survival after all the challenges I’ve gone through in my life, especially in these unprecedented times that we are living in. If it weren’t for faith, I wouldn’t be the seasoned man I am today and maybe would not even be here. My motto is to inspire, motivate, show love to everyone and change people’s lives for the better.
You started a clothing line called “Prosper 22” with shoes, hockey jerseys and hats. Where did the idea for this come from?
That idea came when things suddenly slowed down for me at the beginning of the pandemic. I had so many new opportunities that were happening south of the border. When everything was cancelled, I had to recalibrate and tap into what I always wanted to do, which was succeed in my passion for music, entertainment and fashion. Music was out, entertainment was out with no events, allowing me to get into fashion branding.
What projects are you currently working on?
I’m currently working on releasing my upcoming EP called Arena Anthems, which I can’t wait for the world to hear. I launched my new podcast called “Live, Love & Prosper.”
With the buzz of my P22 premium sneakers and the “P” hats, I’m about to start working on designing my second shoe drop and expanding the PROSPER BRAND.
I’m working on an OTT (Over The Top streaming service network) called Lift TV with content to inspire, motivate and uplift your days. I’m also starting a music label and more.
What advice would you give to anyone looking to get into the music industry?
Make sure you’re getting into the music industry because it’s all you eat and sleep about to the point that it’s in your DNA, and you would do it rather if there is an industry to make it or not.
As much as it looks like music is more accessible, the game is not built for you to “make it.” Do it for the love. Do it for the fact that it is a true gift within you that you need to release to the world without any hard expectations, but by studying the greats and working hard at it, you’ll be surprised how the bigger doors will gradually open for you.