Ah weekends, so many choices – so little time. How to spend that time is the question. Party at some of the world’s greatest clubs, rub shoulders with Lady Gaga at Tommy Hilfiger’s latest fashion show or get ready to attend that little event called the Grammys? Yes, well we’re all allowed to dream, all of course but Chloe-Jane, the rising DJ sensation of New York City. For thirteen-year-old Chloe, she does all of the above and more for her weekends.
At such a young age, Chloe has already found herself in a unique position of privilege. Not simply just down to her great pedigree, music genes and well versed connections, but also due to her own unique sense of hedonism, outstanding talent and charismatic “bubbly” charm. Well known throughout New York as the ‘cool girl on the block’, Chloe-Jane encapsulates every element of the iGeneration popular teen. Adorned for her chic sense of style, her unwavering glamour and access to some of the world’s most elite parties, Chloe already boasts a large social media and YouTube following.
But what else grants her such notability, you may ask? Well why don’t you give media guru Russell Simmons a call to ask? He is, after all, quite the fan. Not to mention the many iconic producers she’s working with such as Jellybean (John Benitez) who has worked with and produced for the likes of Madonna, Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson. Or the fact that she has already performed in St Barth’s and Ibiza’s most prestigious clubs hosted by A listers such as Paris Hilton.
The fact of the matter is, whilst it would be easy to place all credit to this growing star’s shine on her expansive network of prominent musicians, she, unlike many other young fabulous girls of her generation, has managed to create a career for herself that, at this level and extent, nobody can create for you. Chloe-Jane has dedicated her life, education and general focus on the DJ industry. She works hard writing new material, learning new skills and challenging her advancements every day to create the substance she needs to back up the star sensation that keeps many of her fans captivated.
So Chloe, how did you find yourself professionally DJ’ing at such a young age?
I come from a musical family. My parents love music – my mum used to be a saxophonist, my aunt is a professional singer. My whole family is involved in the industry some way or the other. I’ve been DJ’ing properly for over a year and a half. It started two summers ago during a trip to Ibiza, we’ve been going every summer since I was born and it is definitely one of the biggest music Islands in the world. Growing up there with music all around me, I had my ear open to the evolution of sounds. I started catching on and I was like this is really cool. So when I was twelve, my friend and mentor Jellybean Benitez, who is an absolute legend in the industry – he helped produce Holliday for Madonna and many more hits, recommended I go to Dubspot in New York. Dubstop is this great DJ school so I started taking lessons for a year and then the following summer I went back to Ibiza and just worked hard.
Would you say that being an American in a European landscape helped you nurture your talent and really jump start your career?
Definitely. When I returned to Ibiza that following Summer after taking classes at Dubstop, I performed at charity events, kid’s parties and then I got this really big break- I was asked to perform at this club called Amnesia. Anyone who knows Ibiza knows that Amnesia is one of the biggest clubs and I was asked to perform at this event there, making me the youngest DJ to ever perform there. It so happened that Paris Hilton was hosting the party and came in the booth with me, it was such fun! From there on I got a few more gigs and got to perform at KM5, this really chic lounge in Ibiza. It was a family night so the vibe was really cool, it’s all a lot of fun.
So you got the chance to perform for Paris Hilton, not many 13 year olds can say that, tell us about some more of your impressive audience members.
I also get a lot of work in St Barts. I often DJ in LeTi, in fact the last time I worked there was in December. DJ Cassidy came to see me, Russell Simmons which was really cool. And then the next night Russell had a party at Eden Rock and DJ Cassidy performed so they asked me to come and watch. DJ Cassidy said I did an amazing job and he really wants to help me in my career now. Kris Jenner also came to an event of mine at LeTi.
How does it feel to have these huge guests with all these high expectations on you?
I honestly just think of it as fun. I’m really young and I don’t even need to be doing all of this but it’s my passion, it’s simply what I love to do and I feel so blessed to be able to do it. It’s exciting when big guests are there but I’m never stressed because it is what I love to do.
What advice do you have to anyone young who wants to get into the music industry?
The balance is hard with school but if you love it, it’s worth it. Go to classes, if you can’t afford them then go to a DJ shop and just play with equipment. You have to practice. If you love what you do, practicing should be fun. Go out, hear music, listen, observe and learn. You need to soak up what’s around you, people would want to help if you show them your interest.
Do you surround yourself with other young talented artists?
Yes, this year I started attending this school called the Professional Children’s School on 60th street, It’s a special school for dancers, actors, DJ’s/producers, singers etc. It’s given me a great opportunity to be surrounded by so many different types of talented people. Just in my friend groups alone I get to be around ballerinas, models, sports professionals, fellow musicians and actors, it really is great to be around such a diverse set of creatives. We all hang at lunch and learn so much about each other’s passions. And everyone works, my friend Lily is signed to Wilhelmina – just an example but everyone is so proactive.
How do you manage to keep the curriculum balance? It must be hard to juggle a career and schoolwork?
I have a totally normal school life, I do all the regular tests and get a ton of homework, like everyone else. Education is very important. But yes, balancing is important. I always have a lesson after school whether it could be singing, piano, dance or DJ’ing, I always have a lesson after. Then I do homework and get on with anything else I need to get done.
On top of all that you have quite the social media following, you engage with so many young people by inviting them into, what you call yourself on Instagram, Chloe-Jane’s World. What is it, you think captivates so many of your young followers to be so invested in your life?
My favourite thing is to interact with my followers. I love live streaming and speaking to them. A lot of them are my age or younger and they love seeing me reach for my dreams, it inspires them and they have a lot of questions. I like to talk with them, make friends with them and build strong relationships. The YouTube channel has also done well. The schools in New York are quite close so everyone knows each other so a lot of the kids my age in New York know me and follow or subscribe to me and from there it just grew really fast. It’s funny because I wouldn’t call myself a celebrity, but when I walk down the road I get kids running up to me like “You’re Chloe-Jane!” because they know me from online. I think they follow me for my music and style. I love fashion, I have a chic yet fun and bubbly style.
So tell us, what has 2017 got in store for Chloe-Jane?
Well, as a singer, I’ve been working on my own music. I just worked with this group of producers called The Eleven. I just did two songs with them. They also just finished with Meghan Trainor, they are the best I absolutely love them. I also met producers in Ibiza who helped me put together six new songs. We had a studio built in our house in New York so I am just constantly making music. I’m currently taking meetings in LA. A couple production companies are interested in doing a Chloe’s World show. I’m also going to be taking meetings with record companies that are interested in my music. But for this weekend, I’m just excited to attend the Grammy’s and have my photos taken on the red carpet, that should be really fun!