D-Nice: ‘Music Introduced Me to Being Creative, but Technology Saved My Life’


Derrick Jones, known to the world as D-Nice, started his career as an emcee in the burgeoning hip-hop collective, Boogie Down Productions, which was fronted by Lawrence “Kris” Parker, also known as the legendary KRS-One. As he transitioned to the turntables, D-Nice started gaining notoriety for his parties. Then the pandemic took over the world and opened up an opportunity for the Bronx, NY-born artist, who started Club Quarantine on the Instagram platform.

The talented crowd motivator told AfroTech that “Music introduced me to being creative, but technology saved my life.”

Between the time that his career had him controlling the mic and then him controlling the turntables, D-Nice worked with a digital company, Boom Digital, that built websites for artists like the late Aaliyah and R&B superstar, Tank. From there, he started his own digital company United Camps, and started creating custom websites for other artists, like Alicia Keys, as well.

“Building The Diary of Alicia Keys was an important one for me because at the time she was managed by her mom and it was almost like we were creating Twitter before Twitter was around,” D-Nice said. “We just didn’t think of doing it for the masses because the site was based on her diary.”

As D-Nice continued to build his brand, his love for music and technology played a role.

“I started to become more in love with music and understanding how to bridge the gap between music and tech because of experiences like that and this is what made the whole thing happen with CQ,” D-Nice said. “If you fast forward to 2020, I was already embracing the technology anyway and trying to figure out how to do things in a virtual way, and the moment that I started playing music on social media it was almost like I had already envisioned this before quarantine, which is why I jumped on it so early.”