Some of the responses have been edited for clarity.
Haskell Greenidge, better known as DJ Spider, is a super producer, disc jockey, songwriter and music curator from New York. He is known for revolutionizing soca music. Greenidge has produced hits for Marzville, Problem Child, King Bubba, Majah Hype and more and for creating a signature but versatile sound. Greenidge said growing up in a Caribbean home taught him to be respectful, family-oriented and the importance of getting an education and more out of life.
Tell us about your journey:
From my humble, Brooklyn, New York beginnings, I advanced to the forefront of the New York City party and club scene. Being one of the main college DJs in the early 2000s, I created a cult-like following in the college community throughout the State University of New York and City University of New York systems.
However, I can’t forget how it all started – from carrying crates of records for my brother-in-law. I played for hours upon hours in my basement. I studied mixes, blends and styles from the likes of Kid Capri, Funk Master Flex and Red Alert. Being Caribbean American, I was also into the soundclash culture. I studied King Addies, Bass Odyssey, Stone Love, to name a few.
With hard work and determination, I evolved into much more than a disc jockey or an entertainer. I’m also an accomplished producer and songwriter.
What inspired you to pursue each goal?
Hard work. I knew what it took to accomplish my goals. I had to work hard for everything and make my way. I saved every penny to buy records and equipment. I was and still am very hungry to win, and I love to compete. You see, in this game, it’s good to be humble, but you also have to be competitive.
What do you like most about being of Caribbean descent?
Well, for me, I spent all of my childhood summers in Barbados. I was able to learn a lot about my family as a child. Man, I could remember roasting breadfruit with butter and whatever meat we could afford, playing football (soccer) and cricket and going to the beach. Growing up in the country, in St. George, I learned to tend to cows, pigs and more, with my uncle, who still works the ground to this day.
What are three words [phrases] you would use to describe yourself?
Never give up, never stop; give everything your best; and use all the resources around you to achieve your goals.
What is your definition of success?
For me, a successful man can provide for his family, his friend in need and himself. Many people claim to be successful but have no family to love and no friendship, and they are broken inside. That’s not the life I want to live: to gain all riches and glory and be empty.
When are you the happiest?
I am the happiest when my family, friends and loved ones are good. This brings me true joy and peace.