Promoter says Broad Ripple DJs not the problem, but part of solution
One of Indy's biggest entertainment promoters is speaking out, adding a new voice to the effort to make Broad Ripple safer.
He's urging dialogue between police, business owners, DJs and the Broad Ripple Neighborhood Association. This comes after a club fired a DJ for what some say are bogus allegations of promoting violence.
Eyewitness News has the exclusive story and why one club manager says the fallout of a recent shooting has gone too far.
Crowds spill out the door on Saturday night at a Broad Ripple hot spot. Up until days ago, Michael, a father of two, worked the hip-hop party scene at two popular clubs. Here, he's known as "DJ Cash."
"I wanted to bring some diversity to this area," he said standing in front of the NYX Nightclub on North College.
But this week, he was fired amid questions about his promotions. Eyewitness News took a look and asked him to describe them.
"Maybe a sexy chick in a bikini or something like that, might have been on the edge a little bit, but nothing that had to do with guns or violence or drugs or anything like that. No," he said in disbelief.
He also talked about a recent tweet he sent out that he said was misconstrued. It read, "Dope Video for a Dope Party." In urban culture, the word "dope" doesn't mean drugs.
"When it's used as an adjective, which is the way I used it, it means excellent. Good. Great," he explained.
Now one of Indy's top entertainment promoters is speaking out on the DJ's behalf. Amp Harris, who promotes big name entertainers, actors and athletes says in the wake of the shooting in Broad Ripple, DJ Cash was unjustly labeled and fired.
"Because of a topic that really has nothing to do with a guy carrying a gun! Here we have a situation in Broad Ripple where a young black man comes in and he shoots people. Now you have recourse with nightclubs being the blame, DJs, promoters being the blame," Harris said.
As a long-time promoter, Harris himself is the first to say DJs must be held accountable for their messages.
"They have to tone down some of the things, some of the music they play in some of these clubs. They have to one, take ownership and responsibility. Two, they have to have morals and values and money can't be the driving force," he said.
Just as important, he says, they deserve a seat at the table, as part of the solution in helping business owners and law enforcement address violence in Broad Ripple or any other part of town.
"I want to bring the young promoters, the young DJs and the club owners and the Broad Ripple Neighborhood Association together. Let's all sit down and let's talk about what makes sense for everybody. Not just one group of people," Harris said.
The general manager of NYX Nightclub told Eyewitness News by phone that DJ Cash had a successful run in Broad Ripple and that there were no violent promotions. In fact, Mike Stancombe said they were forced to part ways with DJ Cash because of other external pressures from unnamed officials.
Stancombe calls the whole ordeal ridiculous.
Amp Harris says it's time to break down the stereotypes and come up with positive solutions in Broad Ripple.