June 28, 1973
|Alma mater||University of California, Berkeley|
|Occupation||Interviewer, journalist, director|
|Total views||3.3 billion|
Updated: 28 May 2020
Vlad Lyubovny (Russian: Влад Любовный; born June 28, 1973), commonly known as DJ Vlad, is an American interviewer, journalist, director and former disc jockey. He is the CEO of video and news website VladTV.com. His YouTube channel, djvlad, features his interviews of multiple music artists and entertainers and currently has over four million subscribers. He has also produced and directed films.
Lyubovny was born in Kyiv, Ukraine (then part of the Soviet Union) to a Russian Jewish family and moved to the United States at the age of five, first living in Massachusetts before settling in San Mateo, California.[better source needed] Lyubovny was interested in hip hop in his youth, and states that he fell in love with it when N.W.A released their debut album.
Lyubovny majored in computer science at the University of California, Berkeley, and worked for Intel, Sun Microsystems and AutoDesk while attending. He was able to get a six-figure job out of college due to the dot-com bubble during the turn of the millennium. Lyubovny was initially making hip hop beats, but later quit when he realized he would not be successful at it. He began DJing after experimenting with a friend's equipment. In a 2010 interview with Parlé Magazine, he stated: "I kinda reached this point where I was like 'I really wanna do music. Let me try and concentrate and do music as well'." He also directed on the American Gangster television series, as well as the documentary film Ghostride the Whip.
Lyubovny later launched VladTV.com and initially uploaded mp3 files of DJ mixtapes.[when?] He moved to New York City and released the Rap Phenomenon mixtape series.[when?] He was also making hip hop DVDs, but was financially struggling as DVD sales began to decline. In 2008, Lyubovny turned his attention towards YouTube, which had recently launched its Partner Program which allows content creators to earn money. Lyubovny then decided to drop all other endeavours and focus on YouTube full-time.
In August 2008, Lyubovny was assaulted by rapper Rick Ross' entourage after he covered a story on the rapper's former career as a corrections officer. Lyubovny filed a $4 million lawsuit. On April 15, 2010, a New York Federal Jury awarded Lyubovny $300,000 in his civil suit, finding Ross liable for setting Lyubovny up for the attack at the 2008 Ozone Awards in Houston, Texas.
In December 2016, Lyubovny interviewed Soulja Boy, who explained events surrounding a home invasion and shooting in 2008. The interview went viral, with many questioning the validity of Soulja Boy's claims. Numerous people parodied Soulja Boy's interview online, including rapper Joe Budden, and comedians Mike Epps and DC Young Fly, in what was dubbed the "Soulja Boy Challenge".
- "DJ Vlad. : I'll Start To Worry When They Stop Talking About Me". hiphoplt.com. March 19, 2013. Archived from the original on March 25, 2014.
- meaux, fbg (2018-03-30). "When Lil Baby almost made DJ Vlad blow his cover as an informant >>>pic.twitter.com/lKvWX3BZ1e". @00Exodus. Retrieved 2019-06-22.
- "Is DJ Vlad An Informant?". AllHipHop.com. Retrieved 2019-06-22.
- "Rah Digga To DJ Vlad: "Your Platform Perpetuates A Lot Of Nonsense"". YouTube. Yanadameen Godcast. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
- Benoit, Kevin. "DJ Vlad - 60-Hour A Week Work Ethic Pays Off". Parlé Magazine.
- "Ghostride the Whip". Debate. Archived from the original on 2014-04-07.
- Gendar, Alison (April 16, 2010). "Jury orders gangsta rapper Rick Ross to pay $300k to DJ Vlad for entourage attack". NY Daily News.
- Kaufman, Gil (15 August 2008). "DJ Vlad Files $4 Million Lawsuit Against Rick Ross Over Alleged Ozone Awards Beatdown". MTV.com. MTV. Retrieved 28 May 2020.
- Hinckley, David (April 28, 2009). "Star and Buc Wild get online with Vlad". NY Daily News.
- "DJ Vlad Talks "Boondocks" Season 3 Cameo". Complex. April 9, 2010.
- Coleman II, C. Vernon (31 December 2016). "Soulja Boy Challenge Takes Over The Internet". XXL. XXL. Retrieved 28 May 2020.