Miami DJ Kidd Madonny makes his Dallas debut Sunday, kicking off a new monthly tea-dance at The Brick
DJ Kidd Madonny doesn’t think of himself as an entertainer so much as some kind of spiritual musical medicine man.
“The best DJs are very much like a shaman,” he says from his home in Miami. “Like tribal leaders, a DJ is the leader of his tribe or community, emphasis on unity. If music is food for the soul, then it would make sense that the shaman or tribal elders trek into the wilderness out to the edge of their consciousness where they are forced to learn a new behavior having to overcome challenges.”
He’ll learn what the jungle of Dallas in summer is like when he makes his Big D debut this Sunday, hosting what will become a month tea-dance at The Brick.
Before his debut, we chatted with the muscle-bound spin doctor about what audiences can expect, how he got his uber-gay name (and the legend who gave it to him) and how he maintains that rockin’ bod.
Dallas Voice: You’re about more than just deejaying. Explain your philosophy about entertaining. Kidd Madonny: Philosophy? Wow that sounds so elaborate. As I’ve evolved, it’s always been about delivering a product or service that no one else in the world can deliver. So at the core, it’s about doing your best and remaining true to your brand.
What should Dallas audiences expect from your show? OMgosh! They are going to get a scene they have not experienced in this city. It’s my first time performing here ever! I am going to transform this venue with lots of color, and add some flash to warm up the space. I help make the room more intimate with the decor I design specifically for each new event.
Musically, I am going to serve them a bit of what they expect and then switch it up when they think they know what’s coming up next. I use some special effects in my evening show. You’ll see a little bit of that later in my set, too. There will be some costumes that no one else has seen yet, which is always exciting to see that virgin response.
What’s your musical go-to as a DJ — what style of music gets you and your audiences moving? Good question. Just as no two rooms are the same, no two audiences are, either. I have to gauge the audience’s response and see what they are into. If I don’t treat them like an audience, it’ll be just another crowd. I built my career by being able to reach out and touch something inside of the listener. That’s why I am [coming to Dallas] or [Dallas organizer Dannee Phann] could have hired any other DJ in America.
Tell me about your DJ name. No one has asked me about this in awhile. It’s kind of a funny story – I can’t believe it turned out like this. Here goes: I was working for The Artist Formerly Known as Prince. It was a long time ago when he still had his club Glam Slam in Miami — a gorgeous venue and my first dancing job. I was really young and naive about a lot of things.
We were backstage getting ready to go dance. In Miami then, even the straight clubs had go-go dancers, male and female, and the best ones still do. As we were going out onstage, Prince is ushering us out and asking what my stage name is. I am thinking, stage name? I don’t have one of those! Prince says. “C’mon kid — what’s your stage name? You have got to have one.” I look at him blankly. He asks, “OK, then who’s your favorite artist?” thinking I am going to say “Prince” … which I probably should have at that point. Instead I blurt out “Madonna.” He seemed kind of surprised and his face squints a little. Like a boss, he says, “Great, you’re Kid Madonny.” I liked it and added another D and have been Kidd Madonny ever since. By the way, I love both artists! Forgive me, Prince!
Do you know whether Madonna knows? I think she may at this point. I never really would have until this past March when I had two gigs on both coasts in one day. We were doing the official pre-party in Miami during Winter Party weekend. I was the opening DJ, performing 8 a.m.—noon before flying out to perform that night in Seattle. That party was at a high profile venue on Miami Beach. Madonna’s U.S. marketing team was involved in the event’s promotion, so I know they were in contact with her. The main DJ hosting the event was also really concerned about maintaining status quo and didn’t want me or my manager to say anything about the party that wasn’t sanctioned, so we were walking on eggshells, literally for weeks! To this day, we don’t know if Madonna was aware of my DJ namesake and career or if the DJ who hosted the event was just being sketchy.
Do you think she’d approve? I would like to think that Madonna would most definitely approve of my career and name. We’re both over-the-top performers who constantly push the boundaries of dance music and performance. We’ve both probably reinvented ourselves numerous times in our careers as well.
You’re quite obviously ripped. What’s your regimen? Wow, that’s going to take up a lot of time. It’s isolating different muscle groups each day and working them. Sometimes I will workout five to six days a week, depending upon my tour schedule.
Thank you for the interview and great questions! I cannot wait to come to perform for my people in Dallas. This has been a long time coming and I want to turn it out! See you on dance floor!
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition June 19, 2015.