11-Year-Old DJ BeatBoy Opens for Pitbull
Alex Gutierrez also won the Brecksville Entertainer of the Year title earlier this year.
Alex Gutierrez is your typical 11-year-old: he knows school is important, but he loves music and baseball, too. Oh, and he’ll be opening for Pitbull on Sunday during the rapper’s Cleveland stop.
Alex, a soon-to-be 6th-grader at Brecksville-Broadview Heights Middle School, is also known as DJ BeatBoy. He got started about a year ago after playing around with an app on his dad’s iPad. He saved up for the real equipment and hasn’t looked back since.
As DJ BeatBoy, Alex has performed at a variety of local venues, like malls and teen nights. He performed at Cleveland’s Marc’s Great American Rib Cook-Off & Music Festival this spring, where he said someone noticed his set and asked him to perform before Pitbull takes the Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica stage this Sunday.
Since then, Alex has been practicing hard for his big gig. He practices for hours before a show, setting up the music he wants to use, deciding where he wants to mix songs and marking those spots. But he knows that DJ-ing has been disparaged by some as “just pressing a button” and wants fans to know that he performs live.
“It’s an art,” Alex said. “It’s what you want to make with it.”
Alex has grown up in a “musical family,” his father Alex Gutierrez said in an email.
"One thing I can say is, our house is fun!" Alex's dad said in an email. "Sometimes there's DJ equipment set up in the family room, and kids dancing all over the place. It's a good time."
His dad works in radio, and his mom, Christina Gutierrez, is an elementary school music teacher. Both Alex and his little sister, Isabella, study dance—Brecksville residents might have seen Alex’s winning moves at the Brecksville Entertainer of the Year contest earlier this summer.
Alex said his family’s support plays a big part in his young success. They monitor his website and his Twitter account, and they discussed a key part of his shows: keeping them clean.
“It wouldn’t make sense for me to mix anything dirty because I’m 11,” Gutierrez said.