Joshua Odhiambo aka Selector Stinger, 24, is one of Kenya’s renowned matatu DJs. We caught up with his brother, Kelvin Odada alias Buathadeejay to tell us more about him
Wambui Virginia @kuivirgie
Tell us about you and your relationship to Stinger.
Most people know me as Buathadeejay, but my real name is Kelvin Odada. I am a deejay and an event organiser. I work with an organisation called Count Me In and an entertainment company, Fuse Events. I am the elder brother to Selector Stinger.
How would you describe your childhood?
I have four siblings; two sisters and two brothers. Stinger is the youngest. Our childhood was normal. We were born and bred in Dandora estate in a staunch Christian home.
Did Stinger have a nickname as a child?
(Laughs). Yes. We used to call him Shua, short form of Joshua.
What kind of sibling was Stinger growing up?
He was a quiet and cheeky boy. He is the youngest and that made him the favourite child, so he used to get away with a lot of things. If you meet him for the first time, you would think he is quiet, however, people who know him will tell you he’s not.
He loved things his way. He also loved music a lot. While in school, he would practise on my decks since he aspired to do music. His passion for music started when he was young; that is how he nurtured it into a career.
Has he had another job besides being a DJ?
For him, it has been music all the way. I remember when he was in his final year at Dandora Secondary School, he did his exams, and after school he came to my place to create mix tapes. He was creative I can say. He would be a student during the day and after school he would sell music mix tapes to matatus in the city.
He did all of this because he never liked asking for financial support, so he hustled his way to get things. He is a self-taught DJ.
How did your parents react when he showed interest in deejaying?
Well, he did receive some backlash since, of course, they hoped he would pursue something different. So after secondary school in 2014, MC Super Marcus started mentoring him. Later that year, he joined Marcus’ company, the Dancehall Franchise Unit to familiarise himself with the industry.
In 2016, he started working with DJ Kalonje, who had heard and liked his work. He mentored him along and also took him to his major gigs.
Stinger has now become a household name in Kenya. What values and traits have helped him succeed and get to where he is?
Since he was young, he had a drive that was geared towards music. He is very passionate about it. He is also a go-getter and very focused on every project he sets his hands on. Also, one thing I love about my brother is that he has never been on mainstream media in negative light, and neither have I ever heard anything negative about him.
Why a matatu deejay?
First, deejaying is quite broad. There are clubs, corporates, those who just sell mixes and then there are matatu deejays. It’s one field that has few deejays.
When Stinger started out, he used to give out his mixes for free, making his music reach a wider audience quickly. He also used matatus to gain mileage and advertise his work.
What is one thing that people don’t know about him?
He doesn’t talk much. Most people have the impression that he is loud. Another thing, his worst fear is losing out, or losing his consistency. I also admire how he is supportive and encouraging as a brother. He doesn’t let fame and money get to him. He is still the same down-to-earth-person I knew as a child.
What embarrassing incidents do you remember of Stinger?
He was once invited to an event in Nanyuki, where he was to deejay so when he got there with his equipment, he found that the event organiser had invited another DJ, who happened to be his friend. An argument ensued and he had to go back to Nairobi.
What is he currently up to?
Stinger is a DJ. He has been featured in many TV and radio shows. He also hosts several shows. He is focusing on expanding his brand. He has previously been a brand ambassador for energy drink, Redbull.
He also hosts theme nights in night-clubs like Club Sting and Rumours here in Nairobi and outside Nairobi as an invited guest DJ. He also hosts numerous campus events.
What does he love to do when he’s not working?
(Laughs). I think because of his tight schedule, he loves sleeping. If he is not sleeping, his free time is spent in the gym. He loves hanging out with friends too and eating nyama choma.
His relationship status?
He is single.