Unless you’re a born-and-raised native, you might not truly understand what it means for our city to get its first major league pro sports team.
For Green Valley High graduate Joe Green, it meant learning all about hockey and being persistent. The result is a dream gig of sorts: Green is the official DJ of the Vegas Golden Knights.
He first learned of the unorthodox DJ job while spinning at the Venetian’s V Bar and bumping into San Francisco 49ers Hall of Famer Jerry Rice. When the NHL announced it would expand to Las Vegas, Green dedicated himself to getting involved.
“Every week, all week for a year I was researching everything, searching for any info I could find about who was getting hired and reaching out to them,” he says. He also logged plenty of hours watching hockey games and getting a feel for the game and the league. “I didn’t know anything about hockey except you can fight until somebody hits the ground, and that’s pretty much it.”
Green, who has been DJing for 12 years and can also be heard on local radio at 104.3 NOW FM and hosts Saturday-night party the Rapture at Downtown’s Vanguard Lounge, finally broke through and scored an audition with the Knights at the 2017 NHL Awards. He got the gig and started meeting with the team’s production crew to put together in-game playlists, when he’s spinning from the Fortress high in T-Mobile Arena.
“I had to abandon my first list, because I got some different vibes during the preseason,” Green says. “When you’re DJing at a club or a bar, you have to build up while you feel out the crowd, but with this you have to know what direction you want to go. If it doesn’t work, you have to have a plan to go in a different direction.” He says most hockey arenas rely heavily on rock music, but he’s mixing in EDM, remixes and mashups.
“It’s surreal. I don’t even feel like I’m doing it. There have been so many moments where I’m like, wow, it’s a sold-out arena and the first time we’ve had a team of our own to root for. This is crazy. This is our thing.”