Q/A with DJ Superstar Tom Stephan

June 27, 2013 in DJs, Events, Words by Mark Vicente


Tom Stephan (aka Superchumbo) is an International DJ with a reputation for sexy, percussive beats. His monthly party DISH at East Bloc continues to rock London, England and he frequently makes his way across the pond for big events like WMC, Black and Blue, Pride and Divers-Cite. Check out what he has to say about his passion for the Art of DJing.

Mark Vicente: what are the qualities of a great Dj?
Tom Stephan: When a dj really loves what they’re playing, you can hear it. Also think it’s so important to be flexible and interactive with the room. Deciding what to play ahead of time might be a helpful guide, but you’ve got to go with the flow or you’re just a mix cd!

Mark Vicente: why is club life/nightlife important in society?
Tom Stephan: I think it’s about escape- the music, the lights, the atmosphere all help to create the fantasy. It’s a place where you can be who you want to be (like Tony in Saturday Night Fever!) It’s also about connection- a shared communal experience. Being in the middle of the dance floor when an entire room of people emotionally reacts to a song is a very powerful experience!

Mark Vicente: what techniques or rituals do you use to keep from being overwhelmed or stressed from the Dj lifestyle?
Tom Stephan: I’m sober!

Mark Vicente: what is one unexpected gift you received from being a Dj
Tom Stephan: Travel. I grew up in a small town of 15,000 people, and I remember arguing with my French teacher about why I should bother to learn another language. I never imagined I would have the chance to see so much of the world, and I’m immensely grateful that I have.

Mark Vicente: what elements of djing continue to inspire you
Tom Stephan: Technology. I have always found technology inspiring and was always looking for new ways to manipulate music. Playing on Traktor now is mindblowing- compared to trying to do live loops with a Jam Man. (Anybody who knows what I mean will know what I’m talking about!)

And most importantly music! I have yet to become bored. There’s ALWAYS new music out there that gets me moving, excites me when I dj, and inspires me to create more myself.

Mark Vicente: what can people expect to experience from a Tom Stephan/ Superchumbo party?
Tom Stephan: Lots of drums and drama- and hopefully a sense that I’m loving every minute!!

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