O Sharp is the epitome of a Columbus hip-hop OG. As a DJ for more than 20 years and a radio host for the last few, O's opinions about inner-city culture makes those wanting to learn, stop and listen. A member of The Usual Suspects Crew, DJ O Sharp's ability to scratch vinyl is perhaps more known than his desire to help the younger generation grow, but he's trying to change that. Alive recently spoke to the legendary Columbus cutter about a few of his favorite things.

O Sharp is the epitome of a Columbus hip-hop OG. As a DJ for more than 20 years and a radio host for the last few, O’s opinions about inner-city culture makes those wanting to learn, stop and listen. A member of The Usual Suspects Crew, DJ O Sharp’s ability to scratch vinyl is perhaps more known than his desire to help the younger generation grow, but he’s trying to change that. Alive recently spoke to the legendary Columbus cutter about a few of his favorite things.

Afrika Bambaataa’s legacy and message

I like hip-hop as it was intended — as community service to a voiceless demographic. I love how we’ve been able to develop our voice, how we’ve been able to change the world… It gave me something that I never expected. I love music, but hip-hop culture gave me music, it gave me art. It gave me fashion. It gave me intellect. It gave me everything that traditional cultures do.

Technics 1200 turntables

Turntables are my instrument, my voice — it’s how I communicate freely. I’ve been able to communicate all over the country through turntables. It’s the foundation of hip-hop. I prefer vinyl; Serato [a vinyl emulator] is more convenient if you’ve been a part of that culture where you’re bringing 13 crates to a party. Now you can get on a plane with your laptop and your hard drive and you don’t have to worry if your vinyl is messed up or if you brought everything you wanted to play at that venue.

The Los Angeles Lakers’ competitiveness

I vividly remember watching Magic Johnson and not necessarily falling in love with him but I liked what the Lakers represented. As a person who is very competitive, the Lakers compete at the highest level. People hate the Lakers because we always tend to be the front-runner and being the one you’re looking at, but it’s a competition.

Working with children at the King Arts Complex

When the older generations and the younger generations join as a unit, it develops something that is invaluable. Children are our only natural resource that will always replenish itself. If we actually take the time to develop that particular resource directly, we can lose all the other stuff because minds will find ways to create different methods to take care of the world.

Faith

Just being able to navigate through this world as a man, especially with children and music. So [with everything] I have to start there. I probably wouldn’t be somebody you’d want to interview if I didn’t have a good foundation in my faith… God has given me so much to give.

Primiere & Justice

I give my daughter credit for my development as a man at an early age. I had my first child when I was 22, and at that age you really don’t know much about anything. I was trying to figure it out but I knew I had to take care of her and for her to be in the best space possible. My son came when I was 27 and he made me look at money differently. He made me look at, “How am I going to take care of these kids in the long run?” I love being a father to Premiere and Justice.