Jared Tuck (aka DJ Jetpac) may be young, but he already knows he wants to be around music.
Not born, but raised in Whitehorse, Tuck is in his second year of a two-year diploma in Music Industry Arts at Fanshaw College.
“The program I’m taking is nationally renowned,” he says of the program in London, Ontario.
Tuck got into DJing at 18. “I started off when my sister got turntables four years ago,” said Tuck. He adds that when he was 19, he started doing house parties as DJ Jetpac.
In the last two years, he’s been establishing himself as a name DJ, someone who goes to the bar and makes, as he describes, “some sort of living” at it.
His voice over the phone may be soft and somewhat hesitant, but his direction and focus are clear and crisp. Tuck feels that DJing goes hand in hand with his studies. “I can have fun and make money and I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t enjoy it.”
In addition to going to school, Tuck plays gigs at venues and has a residence at a local bar. He also does a gig where he plays mostly hip hop all night and the other gig is for school-related events at pubs. For that, he plays Top 40 music to get people dancing on the floor.
Most weeks he plays two or three gigs and takes naps in the afternoons in order to juggle school. “I have a weird sleep schedule, but my school schedule is pretty flexible,” he says.
Some sort of living at music is what Tuck is pursuing. By studying music industry arts, he has been learning about music production, recording and learning how to make a really good audio product.
On top of playing other people’s music, Tuck has been working on creating original music at school: “I like to do electronic music. It’s really fun to be able to make your own songs and play them and that gives me a repertoire of my own songs.”
Explaining and expanding on this idea, Tuck feels this expands his role from a DJ to a DJ/producer.
While there are a lot of producers that just make, and a lot of DJs that just play, Tuck feels that to be able to both create music and play it as a livelihood fits his goals tidily.
In fact, for Tuck, DJing as a career seems very possible and very enjoyable, something he can combine with future plans to move around snowboarding and checking out music scenes in cities such as Whistler and Montréal.
DJ Jetpac will be playing the Wonderland New Year’s Gala at the Convention Centre in Whitehorse, filling in between Big Soul. As he describes it, this “allows people to enjoy the music and allows the band to take a rest.”
After the band is done and everyone has rung in the New Year, Tuck hopes to get people “shaking their thing on the dance floor.”