By Alex Distefano
By Daniel Kohn
By Aimee Murillo
By Nick Schou
By Nate Jackson
By Nate Jackson
By Dave Lieberman
By Daniel Kohn
No matter how he's making music, the man's name fits.
You've got a lot of different ways you're involved in music.
As far as radio, club promotions and my personal music projects, I do a lot of things. The big thing usually is KIIS-FM. That's where most people know me from. Here in Orange County . . . I get a lot more love from LA County than OC. I don't really understand it. It's hard to explain. Sometimes I feel it's because I'm Latin, because I'm this Mexican kid from Anaheim—especially with club promoters. That's why I started deejaying and doing my own club promotions. I started when I was 14. We'd do all-ages clubs and raves. It started like that—very simple. It's been 10 years, and I'm on KIIS-FM. It's crazy.
Do you think some of it might be that OC people think you're from LA, being a DJ on KIIS-FM?
Yeah, I think that's pretty much it. Back in the rave scene, it was everything, but since then, I've been more in the Latin side of the club scene and promotions. We're doing a thing in Anaheim, at Center Street Promenade. People don't think there's a downtown Anaheim, that it's just Downtown Disney. We've got a little place going on. We're going strong every Saturday. It's just that I don't get any love from the bigger clubs. As far as radio, I mix on Friday nights on KIIS. I do programming. We're working on a whole new project now, which is KIIS en español. I'm kind of lucky that I'm one of the only people who speaks Spanish on the KIIS staff. But now everyone except Ryan Seacrest and JoJo—and they're legendary radio people—is Latin. The way I started with KIIS is kind of crazy: I never applied; I got a message on MySpace one day. I've always said I'm better at marketing than at deejaying. I deejay pretty much for the ladies. I Googled the lady who sent me the message, and she was the music director at KIIS. It's because of her and the program director that KIIS has gone in a great direction the past five years.
You mentioned the increase of Latin on-air personalities. Was KIIS responding to its market?
Definitely. It's Southern California. They're going younger, Latin. They're keeping up with the times. That's what great about KIIS: They're very ambitious. They know people are across town having meetings about how they're going to beat KIIS, and that's not what KIIS is about. We go out and get to talk to kids at schools for career days. My boss does so much charity work. She's a very powerful woman in radio, and she takes so much time out for charity. It just makes me proud to be part of it. Just today, we had a meeting with Wyclef, and we were talking about how he could come down and talk to the kids. One quote I've always remembered is: "The revolution starts in the mind of a child," and I think that's 100 percent true.
The station's gotten younger, too?
I'm 24, and I've been there two years. They have their little weeds that blossom into flowers. Everybody moves within the Clear Channel Los Angeles cluster, and they move people up. I think why I was brought in was that I had a following. I worked on it for years. There are people that have fliers from 1997 that say, "The 15-year-old prodigy, live in the mix." There are just so many genres of music that you can't hate on any of them. There's good stuff everywhere.
It seems like your story is what the kid in high school buying his first PA can aspire to.
Definitely. It's been a long journey, and I feel like I'm still a long way from where I want to be. I have so many goals. That's actually how my name came about, Alex Dreamz. My friends used to make fun of me back in junior high. "Alex dreams too much. We're going to call you Alex Dreamz." They used to tease me about it, and those same guys now are doing nothing. They're security guards. I used to say, "I want to deejay. I want to make beats." I used to listen to JoJo on the radio while doing my homework in junior high. Now I'm hanging out with him in his office, and he's super-cool.
HEAR DJ ALEX DREAMZ WITH ODM ON THE FRIDAY NIGHT PARTY ON KIIS-FM 102.7. EVERY FRI., 10 P.M.-2 A.M. SEE DJ ALEX DREAMZ AT BOOMERANG BAR, 195 W. CENTER ST. PROMENADE, ANAHEIM, (714) 999-8699. EVERY SAT. CALL FOR TIME. VISIT WWW.KIISFM.COM, WWW.MYSPACE.COM/DJALEXDREAMZ AND WWW.DJALEXDREAMZ.COM FOR MORE INFORMATION.