From VJ To DJ, The Transformation of Ray Munns
By Randy J. Klodz
“Oh hah heh hah heh” may be the sound of a laughing hyena, but it’s also
the sound emitted from a giggling former MTV VJ, and current DJ mix master
Ray Munns. Munns’ new disc of mixes, “A DJ’s Night Out,” is due to hit stores
on Nov. 5, giving him one more thing to grin about.
Munns, now 22, got his start at MTV by winning MTV’s “Who Wants to be
a VJ” contest where he beat out thousands of contestants winning him a chance
of being an MTV VJ. The prize, however, did not furnish him with a place to
live during his move from Colorado to New York. “I was homeless for a couple
weeks,” Munns said.
MTV set him up with a hotel room for a month, but Munns was busy with
preparing for the MTV Video Music Awards and making other television appearances
so he was a too busy to find a place to live—which led to a little confusion.
“I was thinking ‘Ah, man, they’re not going to kick me out if I cant find
a place, I’ll just stay here longer,” Munns said. “Sure as heck, the month
ends and MTV’s like, ‘You haven’t found a place yet? You need to get out.’”
Munns later found an apartment and settled in. Once leaving his job at
MTV he began mixing tracks, and put a debut album together, titled “Ray’s
House.” No dummy the business world, Munns hoped that his MTV popularity would
help spark sales of his debut record. “When I released “Ray’s House” I thought
it would go gold, but I think that I’ve learned to face reality,” Munns said.
“If I could have maybe another two or three CD’s I could see it going gold,
then I could see myself being a concrete DJ.”
I’ve come to that point in my life where I’m having a lot of fun being
a DJ, but I don’t know if I want to be a DJ when I’m 40 years old,” Munns
For both of his records, his debut “Ray’s House,” and his new “A DJ’s
Night Out,” Munns has gone through the process of mixing tracks, not producing
them. Though Munns’ goal is to start producing tracks, he explained that there
really isn’t much to his process of gaining rights to songs that he wants
“When I like tracks I usually just call up the president of the label
and I’m just like ‘Yeah, I like this track, I want to put this in the mix,’
and they take care of all that. They will either call me back and be like,
‘No, we cant do it because they want an outrageous amount of money,’ or ‘Yes
they want an outrageous amount of money but it’s cool,’ or they’ll call back
and they’ll say, ‘Yes, we got it and it’s cheap,’ or they call back and they
go, ‘No, that song sucks, why do you want that?”
Munns is excited to begin touring sometime in November and hopes to make
a Chicago appearance, which he believes will be at Nocturnal, which is located
on Lake Street.