DJPRECISA is a DJ who’s been fine tuning her craft for over twenty years.
On any given day, and at a height of almost five-feet-tall, she can walk into a big ballroom carrying almost a hundred pounds worth of equipment. She then proceeds to assemble her turntable and connect all her cables; she concentrates and cautiously thinks about the acoustic capacity of the room; she adjusts the levels at which the music will be heard and enjoyed with consideration on the best sound quality for the space.
She then creates a mental forecast of what kind of music will make her audience dance and have one of the best nights of their lives. The audience can’t help but to start to sway and bob their heads side to side all to the mix of one of their favorite songs now heard in a new way.
During the intro to the first song someone from the audience walks up and asks with a hint of a surprised inclination, "Hey are you the DJ?" She smiles and gives him that shrug that says "Uh, yeah."
That's one of the idiosyncrasies that she has to deal with while being a female in a male-dominated business. She deals with many of the clichés that many females have to deal with on a daily basis, while they work in fields that are male-dominated.
But the music plays on and DJPRECISA is ready to create the soundtrack of your night.
Maria Cecilia Weinkauf a.k.a. DJPRECISA is pure energy and fire. Originally from Chile and now living in Savannah, she has been tasked with making Savannah residents dance for the past three years. From the Treehouse to the Jinx 912, DJPRECISA has spun her records with some of the best.
Do Savannah sat down with DJPRECISA to get to know her better and asked her the following questions.
Do: What is your first memory of when music became essential to you?
DJPRECISA: "It goes beyond a moment. I have many memories since I was very young in which the music became part of me – good and bad moments – sometimes the music was my comfort and other times it was part of a moment of happiness. I collected music since I was 8 years old (cassettes and vinyls)."
Do: Who has been a musical influence on you? What artists or musical groups?
DJPRECISA: "My favorite music was always hip hop and funk so my turntables were essential for me. I worked very hard to buy myself the first turntable; they are still my ’babes’ and it was the only thing I brought with me from Chile.
"I am not the typical Latin DJ who only plays cumbia, salsa, bachata, merengue and reggaeton, although of course they are part of my music library. My influences are Run DMC, James Brown, Ray Charles, C&C Music Factory, Guns N’ Roses, Rage Against the Machine, The Doors, Erykah Badu, Celia Cruz, Mariah Carey, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Selena, (and) J-Lo.
"And from my favorite DJs: DJ Kool, Funkmasterflex, Dj Jazzy Jeff among many others."
Do: How did you start your DJ career?
DJPRECISA: "I was able to buy my first property in Chile and I was working with the company of Marriott hotels for several years in which I learned many things and met many people in the middle. I worked with many brands and I did some beautiful events with tremendous productions. Then I came to the USA with my husband and it became very difficult for me to start in a new country and with another culture, but definitely a beautiful challenge that I do not regret a single day.
"From there, I started to knock on doors and work in almost all of Savannah's small bars and clubs, then I started traveling and being present in front of the faces of big companies that are dedicated to booking DJs. Everything started flowing magically and I started working with Bose as an influencer thanks to Club B DJ Community at LA DJ Expo 2018. Also, other brands such as American Musical Supply, Jmazlighting, Anvil Cases, among others. Immensely grateful to everyone for providing my beautiful equipment and to represent the brands.
"In April 2019, I won the Azalea Festival, which is a female battle between DJs in North Carolina where we opened the show for actor and rapper Ice Cube. That was definitely a great experience, in which I made money and even a crown, it was very special.
"In February, I finally received my American residency. I know how difficult it is for anyone that has gone through it and I also opened my company, DjPrecisa & Talented Entertainment LLC."
Do: How has your "American" experience been here in Savannah?
DJPRECISA: "Pretty good, I can't complain. Savannah is a beautiful little town with very friendly people. Of course, I have met angry people who have tried to make of fun of my accent, but I have not given it too much importance, they are more positive things."
Do: How has the coronavirus affected your work and the development of it?
DJPRECISA: "COVID-19 has greatly affected my business, many canceled and postponed events. At first it was a shock and I went into a phase of depression, I didn't know what to do, I felt lost in the space (of) what I'm going to do now, but then I realized that I needed that rest and that I hadn't had a chance to rest in years.
"I understood that it is time to rethink and create new things, new beginnings and now I have a feeling that it will be even better than anything achieved before. We have to stay positive at the end of the day. We create what we think, so we have to think positive to make it happen."
Do: So, let's be positive. What are the close and long-term plans?
DJPRECISA: "Work hard with more equipment, and better prepared than before.
"Long-term? Opening another company. Before the pandemic, I had an idea for my next venture, but now I'm rethinking myself and doing new market research to determine the new needs of people."
Do: Is there an event or festival in Savannah that you would like to participate in?
DJPRECISA: "I would be happy and honored to participate in some big event for the Latino community or at River Street or on the beach.
"I would be able to participate in any of the festivals in both Savannah and Hilton Head. Stopover? Call me."