Article written by Alexander Rodriguez, host of On the Rocks with Alexander

It’s hard to say what you fall in love with first. His accent? His classicly handsome face? His tight booty? Or his infamous beats? To be honest, it’s a mix of everything. He is a club favorite and he’s just as comfortable playing a major venue for a headlining gig as he is playing at a sex club. He travels all over the world and this last Pride season kept him busy with public and private events alike.

He was born and raised in Paraguay, and is now spoiled and misbehaved in New York City. He graduated from the New York Film Academy, beginning his artistic journey in the film industry by producing & directing short films and documentaries. He was part of the iconic and prestigious DJ school :Dubspot: and was one of the first graduates of the sound design program of the new audio-art and technology institute, discovering the art of producing electronic music & sounds. His DJ sets are filled with vocal house & disco grooves, flirting with drums & some dark beats. But don’t ask him to play Britney, he’ll make a face.

We caught with Waly over five cocktails in between sets for this Andrew Christian exclusive:

What piece of music or artist first got you inspired to DJ?

The track "Born Slippy" from the British electronic music duo UNDERWORLD. It’s the song that changed my perception of life & music. The song is part of the soundtrack of the movie TRAINSPOTTING directed by Danny Boyle; the film became a cult movie and a modern classic. "Born Slippy" has the perfect combination of techno beats and vocals that tells the story of an irreverent young soul boy that navigates life with a careless *carpe diem* lifestyle through bad decisions. Very relatable. At the time, it was a unique sound that captivated me & got me interested in electronic beats. I still use different versions of this song in my sets.

Do you remember your first professional DJ gig? How did it go?

My first professional DJ gig was for the opening of an Emporio Armani store. It was supposed to be a small event that turned out to be a big party. I was so young & shy and I was very nervous but, at the same time, I was enjoying seeing people dancing to the songs I was playing. That was when I understood the synergy of connecting with people through music, and it’s a feeling that I’ve been chasing at every gig ever since.

What are your favorite kinds of parties to DJ?

I LOVE to play at sex parties/clubs. There is a satisfactory feeling of playing music in a sex environment, without being part of the sex activities. People think that at these types of parties nobody pays attention to the music and that it’s not true. During sex, the sense of hearing becomes more acute and subconsciously people will feel the beat of the music intensively, and being in control of this feeling makes you manipulate the energy of the club in a way that becomes an experience very difficult to replicate.

Where do you usually DJ?

I play disco house at Atlas Social Club (Hells Kitchen - NYC) every Sunday afternoon. This summer I worked a lot at private parties / after-hours in Manhattan, Brooklyn & Fire Island. I also work for different promoters so I’ve been playing a lot in LA, Palm Springs, Miami, & Montreal.

What kind of music are you listening to when not working?

I love house music and I enjoy this genre so much that I can’t say that I feel like I am “working” when I play it, but when I need to unplug the electronic beats for any reason I play rock 🤘🏻 Marilyn Manson, Korn, The Prodigy, Ozzy Osbourne, Garbage, Hole & Placebo are some of my favorite bands.

Have you ever hooked up during a set?

Yes, I have.

What is one of your funniest/craziest DJ stories?

One of the craziest stories I have is when I hooked up during a set. I was playing this after hour in Greenpoint (Brooklyn) when at the peak of the party, around 9 am, two girls came to the DJ booth just to say hi and dance with me for a little bit. I found them very attractive but super fun above all, so we just clicked and after some kisses, we had sex in the DJ booth. The sex part is not the crazy fact of this story. The episode was just bizarre because of all the men at the party that I might have the chance to have sex with, I end up feeling more comfortable hooking up with two girls. They just brought good vibes to the DJ booth, no attitude & great smiles and that is very sexy. The music, the vibe, and the timing were just right and I had a great memory from that morning.

What is your coming-out story?

I don’t really have a “coming out story” since I was never in the closet, even though I am from Asunción - Paraguay, a very conservative and religious country. I’ve always been an artist and since I was a kid I was always involved in different art projects. The way I dressed was different and the way I expressed my artsy self was not following the norms but it was not necessarily gay, so at that point, I think people were more concerned about how crazy I was than my sexual orientation. Me, particularly, I never thought about hiding my real persona. I was just being myself but nobody ever had a real problem with that either.

You travel everywhere to DJ… what are your favorite cities to play in?

So far, my favorite place to play is Montreal. I am currently in Canada for a gig at Montreal Pride. Canadians know how to party, but also they have great taste in music and they LOVE to dance. I always have a lot of fun playing there. The Brooklyn vibe is also one of my favorites, chill people with intense personalities. My after-hours there are always interesting.

What cities have the hottest boys?

There is no place like New York City. The people there are just something else, and since it is considered the capital of the world it's a mix of different cultures which enhance the beauty of every single people living in the city. I’ve seen the most beautiful creatures in New York.

How do you handle romance and dating while working such late hours?

I don’t really handle anything in my life at this point. I just press play and wait for the best. LOL. I am a little all over the place all the time. Physically & mentally, but when I want something (or someone) I will try my best to make it happen. I am also very passionate and when I am emotionally involved with someone I’ll find ways to be and spend time with this person. There is always a private afterparty when the after hour finishes 😛

Who is your musical celebrity crush?

The one and only Jamiroquai. His music is always so futuristic and sophisticated and that makes him so attractive. Also, his dance moves. Since I was a kid, I found that very unique about him. I like guys that like to dance, so that’s something that always put him in another category for me. He seems fun and careless and that is sexy.

What about your music sets you apart from other DJs?

Sounds cliché but I like to take the dance floor on a journey. I am versatile. So I can go from disco to house and then from techno to tribal. The key to my sets is that it doesn’t matter what genre I am playing or if this is a pool party or an early morning after-hours, it’s always fun and you can always dance to it. You can find some of my sets on my SoundCloud account (Waly-Verdun)and I recommend music & new artists on my Instagram account: waly.verdun or Spotify: WALY VERDUN

Besides music, what other hobbies/talents do you have?

I am a runner. I run at least 3 or 4 times a week. This also helps me to find and listen to new music. Long runs with a good pair of headphones blasting house music on repeat and on the go. Currently, I am training for my first marathon. The TCS New York City Marathon on November 6th.

What would be your advice for a new DJ just getting into the business?

The art of DJing it’s not only about mixing songs. It’s also about educating people about music. It’s OK to play safe and play the same tracks everybody else is playing but at some point, you have to introduce your own sound and style into the mix. Also, djing it’s not about fame and followers, it doesn’t matter where are you playing and how many people you have on the dance floor. Bring the vibe and a good time to whomever it’s dancing in front of you.

Have you ever hooked up with a go-go boy from one of your gigs?

NEVER. I never hooked up with a go-go boy from one of my gigs. I hooked up with the bartender though (…)

What kind of underwear do you wear around the house?

I am super basic when it comes to the underwear that I wear. It’s always just black briefs. However, I am a very visual person, seeing people wearing jockstraps or tight underwear fuels my imagination. Mesh underwear it's my favorite. There is something about the see-through fabric that really turns me on.

If you were to design a pair of Andrew Christian underwear, what would they look like?

Neon dark purple mesh briefs with a thick black waistband and exchangeable pouches. So you have the option to attach a metallic black pouch, or a mesh one, a transparent or a regular purple one.

Check out Waly’s mixes on SoundCloud