DJ Chonz Talks Freestyle Session World Qualifier, CU Summer Music Program

| August 1, 2015


by Tim Wenger

It has certainly been a while (two years to be exact) since we’ve talked about break dancing in the pages of Colorado Music Buzz, but August 8 will see the biggest break dancing event hit the Mile High in quite some time. DJ Chonz (Mario Rodriguez),  who you may know him from KS 107.5 as well his DJ sets and events around town, is hosting Freestyle Session World Qualifier at Beta Nightclub that day, showcasing the world’s finest talent competing for a chance to win $1500 and a slot at the national finals in Los Angeles.

“Me and my brother have been throwing B-Boy events for about seven years,” Chonz says. “But this year is the second year that we’re throwing this event. Last year sixteen cities did this event, this year only eight cities are doing this event.” The event is a break dancing battle in the lines of the movie Step On Up. “We are honored to have this event and they kept our city on the map.” The event is all ages. More info can be found at

DJ Chonz has, in many ways, come to embody the free-wheeling spirit of B-Boy culture and scratch turntable-ism in here in Denver. He is well known as a radio personality, DJ, promoter, and philanthropist. When he’s not behind the booth, Chonz is out working to give kids a better shot at a career in the music world. He is part of CU Denver’s Summer Music Industry Program, currently in its second year. He awards the DJ Chonz scholarship to a deserving teenager, who otherwise might not be able to afford college, a scholarship to attend CU’s Summer Music Industry Program with the intention of giving them the supportive boost needed to pursue higher education. “Last year we awarded two scholarships worth $1900 each,” says Chonz. “This year, we awarded one scholarship that was $1800. Basically, what it is is that they are trying to get kids coming out of high school interested in college.”

“I get applicants and what not and I choose someone that I feel is deserving, that has been through the same struggle that I have,” Chonz says. “Some people don’t have a lot of money to go to college or they don’t know what they want to do at that age, but if they just get that extra push, that could set them up for a life changing experience.”

Chonz himself has been behind the tables for over twenty years, and has become one of the most respected DJs in Denver. “The thing about me is that I can adapt to any crowd, that’s my forte,” Chonz says. “I can scratch, I can do all the things that all the other DJs do but my main task is to make everyone dance.”

Being from Denver “is a blessing,” Chonz says. In college, he worked an internship in Los Angeles and considered staying there, but in 2001 the pull of Denver started calling him back, helped largely by an offer from KS 107.5. The station brought him on as a DJ playing records for the established shows that were already on air, and over time he worked up to his own show. “Things were going pretty well for me (in LA). I was DJing in clubs and things of that nature, but I had the opportunity to be on the radio, and I decided to come back home and do the radio thing.” Fourteen years later, Chonz is still going strong as one of the station’s most popular DJs, and has been able to make a dream career out of his passion for music. “Being on the radio created longevity for me in the long run.”

Check Chonz’ website to keep up to date on all that he is involved in.

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Category: Buzzworthy

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