From Columbus Crew games to High Street spots, you can catch Malik Tuck, aka DJ Leek, in action all around CBUS. We sat down with the local artist to learn about his journey and what makes his artistry in Columbus so special.
How did you get started with your career?
I always had a passion for music. I was in band and played drums in middle school. In high school I started messing with DJ software. I loved being able to blend and mash songs.
I moved to Columbus and started going to Ohio State, and I decided to take DJ’ing head on. I started playing at Big Bar, house parties, and then my name got a little bigger. I moved to the Arena District, and my first residency was Gaswerks for Thursday college night. I started getting hired for events, weddings, and then that’s when the Crew picked me up. I’ve been with the Crew for six years now.
Tell us about where people can currently catch you in action:
I’ll be DJ’ing and hosting for the Columbus Crew again this season, so you can catch me live at home games. I’m also booked for weddings and private events all summer. You also might catch me DJ’ing up and down High Street at spots like Bodega.
What are your experiences like as a DJ and host at local sporting events?
In addition to the Crew, I also DJ and host for OSU men’s basketball games. There is a lot of preparation to host and DJ, from knowing my script to getting songs ready. I get into the arena before anyone is there and I get more and more amped as fans continue to arrive. There’s a lot of production that goes into making sure that everything is on point for the fans and their experience.
You also work for Experience Columbus. What work do you do with them?
I do convention sales. We sell the city of Columbus to outside groups and organizations to bring their events into the city. I do destination marketing and look to bring tourism dollars in.
What makes Columbus such a great spot for you to thrive in?
I love the big city, small city feel. There is so much opportunity, but since we are a Midwestern city, we are all so connected. Everyone knows everyone and you can build your brand and not be drowned out if you do it right.
There’s such a strong sense of community. People want to help and see you succeed. Columbus is constantly growing and it’s nice to be able to grow with the city.
What’s your mission within the city?
I look to elevate Columbus through my art and help the city grow through music, sports, mental health, and helping the city develop while blazing a trail for other people.