On The Record: DJ Rudedogg
BY KALANI WILHELM / Special to the Star-Advertiser
Next year will mark two decades behind the turntables for Rudy “DJ Rudedogg” Laulu. While the ride has been a fruitful one to date, he still searches for as many signature moments as he can get.
“DJs go through many transitions from venues to genres of music, from getting screwed to being appreciated, I thank my heavenly father for the skills and opportunities I have been blessed with,” he said.
From island music fans to the military crowd and occasional weekend revelers in search of a party escape, the Honolulu native has always made a concerted effort to play for the people. As one of the dominant figures on the Waikiki club circuit in the early 2000’s, crazy nights at spots like The Cellar and Zanzabar Nightclub put him in the middle of all the action.
After establishing his worth at Pipeline Cafe and The Shack Waikiki, gigs at concerts and parties featuring the likes of Drake, Lil Wayne, DMX, Trey Songz and Akon would follow. As the current resident DJ at Bob’s Sports Bar in Kailua, Laulu also frequents the decks at Bar 35 and The Fix in Chinatown as well as The Crown at the corner of Kapiolani Blbd. and Kalakaua Ave. He’ll be there on Saturday as part of a concert featuring Gyptian and Fiji.
Looking back, one of the most memorable moments of Laulu’s career came on a night when he didn’t have a gig scheduled and was just about to go to bed.
“I got a call at 11:30 to DJ at Pipeline,” he said. “I didn’t know what it was for but got up, got dressed and to my surprise it was super packed and next thing I know I’m spinning for the Chris Brown afterparty with his DJ and Chris Brown dancing on stage.”
In a competitive profession with more DJs aspiring to make their mark however possible, Laulu has proven that having a confidence rooted in humbleness can also pay big dividends. He said he has always been particularly proud of being one of a small group of local DJs with a Polynesian bloodline as well.
“Nobody likes a cocky DJ, especially in Hawaii,” he said. “My advice is to be humble. Cockiness only brings in negativity and everybody else hating on you. In general I try to be humble and excited at the same time.
“I will continue to hone on my skills. … I’m okay where I’m at now, but (I’m) still striving for more.”
Kalani Wilhelm covers nightlife and music for the Pulse. Contact him via email or follow him on Twitter.