My name is Sundance, and I do a lot. I’m an owner of a salon, and I am a female mixer and radio personality at Soul 106.3.
At a pivotal point in Sundance’s life, radio literally saved her life, as she set records in a male dominant industry. Starting her journey into radio 13 years ago, Sundance dove head first to become a radio personality at WGCI, simply, because she knew she could do it.
Sundance took moments of depression, dealing with an abusive childhood, and transformed her circumstances into triumphant opportunities including, becoming the first female DJ to be inducted into The Core DJs, to being the first female DJ from Chicago to spin on BET’s, Rap City, and traveling all over the world sharing her mixes.
Check out the interview
How did you adjust to the industry.
It helped shaped the woman I am today. I’m from the west side, a very bad area. I come from a violent household, abused kid. I carried a lot of anger, and I didn’t know how to talk to people on different levels. Some of the women in the sales department, got a hold of me and kind of said to me, Sundance you don’t do it this way. Sundance, be nice, smile more. The advice that they gave me kind of helped shaped the woman I am. It was a personal experience, it wasn’t just a job at a radio station; but radio saved my life, because I thought about whoring, before I got the call from Jay (Allen), and he offered me a job. I was just that depressed. I was just at a bad state in life.
What goes through your mind when you’re doing a mix.
Sometimes anger can fuel a mix. Sometimes, despair can fuel a mix. It depends on the moment. When mixes are due at the radio station, I try to set aside a certain day to do the mixes. Sometimes, it may be the inspiration of doing one song.
What was DJing like for you, as a beginner.
DJing was inside out for me, because I’ve been around it all my life. I always wanted to do it, but no one had faith in women. Two guys invested time [in] me, and I promised myself, I wouldn’t fail them. It was hard for me, because I worked at a radio station as a personality; but I couldn’t get booked as a DJ, because people in the streets felt like, if you’re so cold- why won’t your station hire you. I had to really lose my job, and establish myself as a DJ, and then [as] a personality.
How do you define success.
It is personal. It’s not a monetary or financial gain- that’s not being successful to me. I am successful. I was told my whole life, you’ll never be sh**. You’ll never amount to anything. I have been homeless for ten months. I didn’t finish school. I was a high school dropout. I was able to go back to school [and] get my GED. I am my own success story.
You can catch Sundance mixing over at Soul 106.3 on Fridays, at 9p.
Interviewed by Jonnita Condra