Hi, could you introduce yourself in a few words?
Sure! My name’s Boi Skout aka DJ Boi Skout aka Skout. I’m a DJ/turntablist and a very determined person who doesn’t settle for no as an answer. I love to prove points wrong and to challenge myself and those around me. I always quest and thrive for development, growth and prosperity, whether in business or life.
Tell us about your education.
I studied in Gulf English School. In grade 10 (in one more year I was supposed to graduate) I transferred to the Universal American School, dropped down a grade (because of the British/US system difference) and graduated from there. I continued in the American University of Middle East in Kuwait. I regretted not going to the States but that turned out to be one of the most important years of learning in my life, as I got into business at a young age.
What is it exactly that you do?
I simply work on bringing joy through self-expression and stories told through curated music. I’ve always had love towards music, especially Hip-Hop. Having to educate and entertain a crowd is a set of skills even greats still work on. Many people don’t know that Hip-Hop is made from all other genres of music such as blues, jazz, soul, funk, rock, disco etc, which I love listening to myself. Giving the crowd what they want, however, and bringing something new to the table with a twist to keep them eager to know what’s next, then surprising them with something not expected, creates an astonishing feeling of joy.
I also work for AlArgan International Real Estate Co. as a specialty leasing and events officer. Because of our culture and how our society perceives certain fields such as arts and sports, they aren’t looked at as a profession or a career that one would prosper through. However, that is not true in my opinion, as nowadays many factors have changed and many non-traditional opportunities are created by people who aren’t just looking through a ceiling and saying, ‘oh that’s our limit.’ Many don’t understand the hard work and effort put into a craft and the amount of practice and dedication it takes to reach a certain point. They don’t understand that professionalism and knowing how to market yourself is key in today’s open age and world.
What got you interested in what you’re doing?
I’ve always had a thing for music ever since I was a teen, but didn’t realize that DJing was my true passion until later in life. When I was in business at a young age, I used to travel a lot. By the time I was 19/20 years old, I was conducting seminars and conventions for thousands of people in different parts of the world and the organizers of the events were volunteers from the company itself, who’d help run an event from A to Z.
I always seemed to be fascinated by the audio/video unit. I didn’t understand why I used to enjoy volunteering for that section, playing music for the crowd from my laptop without any knowledge or experience in music whatsoever. I used to just consider music and what feeling each song held and when to play each song in an event. Moreover, having people at the end appreciating your efforts and thanking you for making them have a good time, switching or uplifting one’s mood or perspective or even just inspiring one to believe in what they love, is an asset that can’t be bought.
What makes you unique or special in what you are doing?
Having a crystal-clear path towards a destination. Simply having passion, perseverance and vision would get anyone anywhere if one’s mind is set. However, it’s like an engine and its motor. It’s there, you can see it, and all one needs is to simply learn how to drive the motor and get it to where one is heading going through all the bumps and hurdles that might be faced. But what’s the use of learning how to drive the motor and not knowing where you’re heading? You might just go round and round until you get tired and stop. That’s what I noticed with many talents that unfortunately go round and round until they give up.
Tell us your journey to where you have reached today. How was the initial struggle?
I was going through a very rough time personally and that made me take serious decisions without second thoughts. I was at the lowest point of my life due to losing many relationships as I was so focused on business and gave up all the fun when I was young (18- 24). I’d built my business and network that extended outside of Kuwait, dealt with many clients, my business crashed three times (failed/rebuilt etc.), my parents separated, there were never ending lawsuits, I had to depend on myself, being the eldest, plus many more challenges. I had to literally pick myself up financially, emotionally, mentally and physically to be able to function and have some clear thoughts in mind.
I started DJing on 1st November 2014. I saved some money and bought myself my first DJ gear (DDJ SX controller) understanding absolutely nothing about DJing or music theory. But I made the decision to re-discover myself and rebuild my goals and ambitions. I approached many people when I started, be it artists, producers or promoters, but no-one reached out. Thanks to Youtube, I never had to depend on anyone but myself and my goals.
How has been the help of your family in what you are doing? Were they supportive since the beginning?
Unfortunately, no-one truly supported, until today. Just two aunts and my younger brother started witnessing and believing in what I do and aspire to be. I struggled with my parents break-up and problems when I was 15. I started my first summer job working at Pizza Hut when I was 16 and I’ve always depended on myself ever since.
Who are your top 3 heroes and why?
I don’t have three specific heroes in general. However, I do look up to many and get inspired by creatives and successful beings. In each field, I look up to certain individuals, whether it be sports, music, business or life in general:
-DJs – Beatjunkies, ISP’s, X-Ecutioners, DJ Scratch, Jazzy Jeff, Skratch Bastid, DJ Manwell, Cut Chemist, Craze and many more.
-MC’s/Rappers – Rakim, KRS-One, Eminem, Jay-Z, Redman Wu-Tang, Ruff Ryders, 213, D12, G-Unit, Blackstarr, Mobb deep and many more.
-Producers – Marley Marl, Large Professor, Salaam Remi, Scott Storch, Hi-Tek, The Alchemist, Mr Porter, Swizz Beatz, Timbaland and many more.
-Business – Tony Robbins, Gary Vee, Robert Kiyosaki, Richard Branson, Robin Sharma etc.
-Life – Prophet Mohammed (PBUH), Mahatma Gandhi, MLK, Vijay Eswaran, Mandela etc.
In short, I get inspired by greatness!
What are some of the challenges you are facing in your field and how are you overcoming them?
Some of the challenges I’m facing in the field include the negative stereotype of a culture that has been around longer than I have lived. The lack of knowledge in a certain industry or field makes people not appreciate nor properly support. However, I’m a firm believer that leaders are born to stand out and not fit in. Many told me, and are still telling me, Hip-Hop, DJing, Scratching and all that good stuff isn’t accepted or appreciated in our culture, not knowing it’s that mentality that made Kuwait fall off the map from all its pioneering creative arts that used to thrive once upon a time.
Another challenge I am facing is multi-tasking many ideas and projects all by myself not having enough time to fully focus. Why? I approached many people prior but no-one offered to help, mentor or guide my young, hungry, passionate fire within.
What advice or mentorship made a difference in your career?
Detachment! As an individual, I get attached easily to things I love or care about. However, since I started learning to detach from things I didn’t think were holding me back (which was not easy), I have begun to feel the difference.
How would your friends describe you?
I have never asked, but I am a shy and introverted and ‘only speak when needed’ type of person.
What are some of your hobbies?
Sports, fishing and arts.
What are some of your top achievements?
Built a team and a network extending outside Kuwait at 20 years old, travelling every weekend for more than one year consistently, to build and maintain a market.
-Gave two speeches at 21 years of age in front of more than 1500 people in two regional conventions.
-Created history with StayBlessed International, artistic and theatrical production Kuwaiti agency that brings in all A-List acts to the country, by conducting the first ever International Hip-Hop show in Kuwait by bringing International Hip-Hop Artist ‘Russ’ to Crown Plaza, Al Baraka Hall on February 9th.
-Brought the second International Hip-Hop Artist in Kuwait ‘Tyga’ to the Exhibition Hall Center in Mishref on April 19th. (Working on our 3rd international show).
-Ever since I came out, not listening to those around me, I noticed some hopes got lifted back up, which I consider a great personal achievement.
What are your plans or goals for the future?
I have some short, mid and long-term plans. Some of my big goals and plans are:
1. To tour the world doing what I love most – DJing/Turntablism and showcasing the art form at its finest.
2. Never has a Kuwaiti DJ ever represented Kuwait in any top world DJ competition – I’m working on that!
3. DJing with an orchestra.
4. Having my own performance arts school/academy focusing on certain fields, bringing knowledge, skills and, most importantly, history to the culture. Many people tell me not to share my goals and dreams as some might steal an idea. But to me, it’s not about giving out an idea; it’s all about its execution!
How does it feel to have been chosen for this award?
I was very surprised as I wasn’t aware such an award existed. I’m truly humbled and grateful to witness patience and hard work paying off.
Your message for other young and talented people out there.
It’s sad to see some talented people give up just because of ‘some’ factors. However, what’s ever sadder to me, is seeing talented people have no idea of their real purpose or goals in life and end up nowhere with their career in arts.
Your favourite quote.
Actions speak louder! Let that sink in!
Tell us about a dream that you would like to fulfill or make it a reality?
Having my own performance arts school/academy focusing on certain fields and areas towards creative beings, bringing knowledge of crafts, skills and most importantly, history.