Freshman by day, dj by night

Lleythan Crosby performs on the stage at the B.E.T. weekend event in Compton.

Journalism Student

Lleythan Crosby performs on the stage at the B.E.T. weekend event in Compton.

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  • Lleythan Crosby performs on the stage at the B.E.T. weekend event in Compton.

    Journalism Student

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Performing behind the DJ mixer, DJ Tuug shows his passion for working the turntable during his performances.

DJ Tuug—Diamond Bar High School freshman Lleythan Crosby—was inspired by the Beat Junkies, an American hip hop crew established in 1992, and also received support from his father.

“My dad helps me and he believes in me and my talent,” Crosby said via text, “When I tell my dad my goals, he will do everything in his power to make them a reality,”

Crosby has been performing at multiple shows around Los Angeles for four years. He not only performed at the B.E.T Experience with Bianca Richelle but also performed at Grand Park with the Beat Junkies for the New Year’s Eve show in downtown Los Angeles.

“I love putting smiles on people’s faces and I love seeing people dance to the music that I’m playing,” Crosby said. “It actually does bring a smile to my face as it does to theirs and it encourages me to keep doing what I’m doing.”

Besides performing as a DJ, Crosby has been featured on NBC’s TV show, “This Is Us.” The show is a drama that revolves around a set of triplets and their family, who face many struggles throughout their lives. He currently has a role for the show’s fourth season, which premieres on Sept. 24.

“I’ve got to meet a lot of cool actors and I’ve had a couple friends on set that I could hang out with,” Crosby shared. “I don’t want to say too much because [the production team] said not to, but it’s going to be a wild ride.”

Crosby has a very busy schedule since he usually performs as a DJ every weekend. On some occasions, Crosby even gets paid for his gigs, such as a recent show he put on at a school district in Whittier, where he performed as a DJ for the school’s fundraisers and football games. Additionally, Crosby performs at his family members’ birthday parties.

Before attending events, Crosby prepares for his performances by picking out his music tailored to the event he is going to and the age group of his audience. He also has to improvise during performances based on what the audience is responding to.

“You don’t want to prepare too much to the point that when you get there, you have to completely switch everything that you’ve prepared for,” Crosby said. “So I usually just go off what the crowd is bobbing their head to.”

Additional inspiration comes from his uncle, Derryck Gleaton, also known as DJ D Sharp, who DJs for the Golden State Warriors basketball team. Crosby attended a few of his uncle’s shows which encouraged him and gave him motivation to become a DJ.

 “I started listening to a lot of music,” Crosby shared. “I started looking at videos of my uncle [performing] and that kind of got me inspired.”

Crosby hopes to continue turntablism in the future and has an upcoming performance for the Bounce Tour Live event in Las Vegas on Sept. 13. The event will feature other artists such as LayLay, Lil Blurry and Jus Jade. Crosby posts updates about his career and events on his Instagram page, @lleyttuug.