Shaquille O’Neal is a man of many talents. He’s known all over the world for his skills on the basketball court, but now he’s also making a name for himself in the world of music- spinning beats under the name DJ Diesel. However, don’t think that he’s just another celebrity DJ. O’Neal has been working with music even longer than his NBA career.
Shaq had an incredible NBA career
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O’Neal seems to be successful at pretty much anything that he puts his mind to, but he’s always had two main interests.
“I always tell people there are two things that bring people together: sports and music,” he said before a gig at Atlantic City’s Ocean Resort HQ2 dayclub, as reported by Forbes.
Sports, specifically basketball, has always had an important place in O’Neal’s life. After all, he’s over seven feet tall and often referred to as one of the best NBA players of all time.
Right out of college, he was the number one overall pick in the 1992 NBA draft, chosen by the Orlando Magic. Then, he was the very first rookie to be named player of the week at the start of his NBA career.
O’Neal went on to have one of the most successful basketball careers in history, winning three consecutive championships during his time with the Los Angeles Lakers, and another with the Miami Heat. After 19 years in the NBA, O’Neal decided it was time to retire and pursue other interests.
During an interview shortly after announcing his retirement, O’Neal said that he’d miss the competition, but that “Father Time has caught up with Shaquille O’Neal.”
Retirement allowed him to focus on acting, and his many business interests, but it also provided an opportunity to get back to one of his first loves- music.
Shaq has been a DJ since 1986
O’Neal found a love for spinning music early in his life. During his early teenage years, he listened to hip-hop turntablists and became inspired to try it himself. After earning $200 from doing chores around the neighborhood, like mowing lawns and washing cars, O’Neal was able to purchase a setup, and taught himself what to do with it.
Throughout high-school and college, O’Neal played gigs to earn extra money. He may have occasionally taken breaks to focus on other interests, like rapping and basketball, but he always kept his DJ equipment to return to.
There are other celebrities who try spinning music, relying more on their famous name than their actual skills to draw a crowd, but O’Neal insists he’s more than just a celebrity DJ.
“I guess they think I’m a celebrity DJ, but I’ve been doing it since 1986,” he told Ebro Darden on his Beats 1 show. “It’s about having fun and putting on a show for the people.”
Is Shaq a good DJ?
When O’Neal is behind a turntable as DJ Diesel, he tries to have as much fun as possible. After all, he’s already made a huge fortune with basketball and his various business ventures. So when he gets in front of a crowd, it’s all about giving the best show.
“For me, it’s like…we have that adrenaline rush when it comes to rocking crowds,” O’Neal said during his Beats 1 interview. “When you go to festivals, they’re there to just see a great performance. I just give them great music, with the way I put my blends and mixes together…”
Fans seem to really respond to O’Neal and his music. In videos of his performances, you can always see the crowd pulsating with the beat, huge smiles on every face. It’s obvious that they’re enjoying the show. Even comments on the official DJ Diesel Instagram account reflect this.
“THIS IS A ART YOU ARE ART👿👿👿🔥🔥🔥 VIVA EL DUBSTEP!!” one person wrote in response to a recent DJ Diesel post. Fire emoji seem to be an especially common way for people to express how they feel about O’Neal’s shows.
While the public may have loved O’Neal as an NBA hero, many are getting even more excited about his DJ career. It’s just one more way for O’Neal to prove how incredibly multitalented he really is.
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