It’s Exciting! The Entrepreneurial Evolution of John Murphy

John Murphy, the entertainer, inventor and entrepreneur extraordinaire who paved the way for me and many of my industry peers, was my featured guest for the 20th episode of The Celebrate Life Series.

John & I riffed about his previous success as a mobile DJ entertainment entrepreneur as well his most recent multi-million dollar endeavor,

If you want to have a successful career that spans three decades like John, you may want to consider; carving your own niche, not having people as your product, embracing technology, traveling to Australia, celebrating life instead of just working all the time, running a few times each week and staying away from junk food.   Sounds good to me.  🙂

Best wishes and continued success my friend,

The MMP Entertainment and Event Production Team helps the world Celebrate Life! MMP is led by Executive Director, 3-Time National DJ Entertainer of the Year and ADJA Leadership Award recipient, Marcello Pedalino.

The Celebrate Life Series Hits #20: Now That’s Exciting!

John Murphy, Marcello Pedalino, The Celebrate Life Series, ItsExcitingLIghting
John Murphy, the entertainer and entrepreneur extraordinaire who paved the way for me and many of my industry peers, was the featured guest yesterday on the 20th episode of the Celebrate Life Series.
John & I riffed about his previous successes and his most recent multi-million dollar endeavor,
Age has been kind to John and his energy hasn’t wavered a bit. 🙂
Full interview coming soon to the MMP Entertainment Blog…
The MMP Entertainment and Event Production Team helps the world Celebrate Life! MMP is led by Executive Director, 3-Time National DJ Entertainer of the Year and ADJA Leadership Award recipient, Marcello Pedalino.

Marcello’s Business Philosophy and Life Principles Get Published In”Performance Beyond Expectation”


Performance Beyond Expectation. Lulu Publishing, 2010 $24.95 US

Ray Martinez’ latest literary effort, Performance Beyond Expectation, made its official debut at the Mobile Beat Convention in Las Vegas last week.  It’s a collection of success stories, anecdotes, great quotes and basic life principles. My company’s  chapter features our philosophy on the importance of image, technology, fitness, the evolution of the Mobile DJ industry, and life balance.

To be included in a book that highlights some of  my mentors and entrepreneurial inspirations  is an honor.  Then again, anytime you are featured in a book, magazine, newspaper or online and people are saying nice things about you as opposed to the alternative.. it’s a good thing. 🙂

Thanks again Ray.

The following is a blog-friendly excerpt of MMP Entertainment’s chapter.

2006 Business Card

MMP Entertainment's Executive Director, Marcello Pedalino

Marcello Pedalino

“Know,  first, who your are, and then adorn yourself accordingly.” –Epictetus

Credits: Featured speaker at the Disc Jockey News Conference in Dallas, Texas, 2006, the NJDJN National Meeting in Atlantic City, New Jersey, 2008, and the DJ Retreat in Nashville, Tennessee, 2009.

Awards: DJ Times Magazine “DJ of the Year” award winner, 2001, 2002 and 2007.  American Disc Jockey Association “Leadership Award” recipient, 2008.

Marcello Pedalino is known in our industry as the sharpest dressed man.  He is no doubt Mr. GQ; but behind this sharp dressed man, is a man of success with a very high-end entertainment company.

When asked how he got interested in becoming a mobile entertainer, Marcello responded, “I remember attending my cousin’s wedding in the mid 80’s.  The band they had was good- but not good enough to keep me on the dance floor all night.  I wandered outside and into another reception that was taking place at the same venue and saw something I’ll never forget.  It was John Murphy, from Star DJ’s, leading a huge conga line.  Everybody was dancing and the bride and groom were having a blast; the positive energy was intoxicating.  When I found out how much he was getting paid, I knew this was a career that had some potential.”

I further questioned him about his passion and the monetary awards; if he did it because he was passionate about entertainment or just an easy way to make money.

Pedalino replied, “I’m passionate about making people happy, I’m detail oriented, I have an entrepreneurial spirit, and I’ve always loved music; it was an organic path that led me here.  The money was like a cherry on top.”

He was then asked to describe his work ethic and how it has helped him become a successful entertainer and entrepreneur.

“For better or worse, it’s been an all or nothing philosophy.   If I’m determined and motivated for all the  right reasons,  I will skip lunch and the proverbial 5 o’clock whistle until the task at hand is completed and operational.  There are many times when I’ll mimic getting up from my chair like those professional poker players do when there’s a big pot  and they have to commit everything have; when I put my mind to something, I’ll get in the zone and say, “All In!” From that point on, it’s game on. When a person is comfortable being in this mindset, they tend to out-perform individuals who aren’t as motivated or who don’t have as much on the line.  The foundation of my work ethic is also based in Jimmy Valvano’s famous speech in which he said, “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up.”  That had a big effect on my psyche at the time and has had a significant impact on the success I’ve earned since.”

Marcello on Fitness..."It's easier to stay in shape than it is to get onto shape."

Marcello on fitness: "It's easier to stay in shape than it is to get into shape."

Those who know Marcello, know he’s an avid fitness buff. At most trade shows when other DJs are out until three or four in the morning, Marcello gets a good night’s rest and is up at the crack of dawn getting ready to run.  I asked him to tell me the differences between his workout training and his DJ training.

He said, “I consider my physical fitness a necessary layer of my professional training. I physically train with a group of friends at my YMCA who understand the importance of motivation and the concept that it’s easier to stay in shape than it is to get into shape.  I professionally train with a group of industry colleagues who respect the fact that complacency is the enemy of progress. Both factions are refreshingly unapologetic when it comes to prioritizing a training regimen- regardless of the occupation.”

I mentioned a moment ago about how sharply dressed Marcello is all the time.  I asked him to  share his thoughts on dressing for success and making an impression on clients as well as how it can turn into more money for the DJ, based on presentation.

“As an owner operator in the entertainment business, my company’s success depends on my appearance and well being.  I am the product, the brand, the vice president of sales and the human resources director who establishes my company’s first impression to almost all of our potential clients. If I don’t look good, I don’t feel good, if I don’t feel good, I don’t perform well, if I don’t perform well, I’m out of business.

Daily Record Photo 11-8-06 JPEG (Large)

Marcello on style: "Dress how you feel."

I’ve been in enough situations where dressing better than my equally talented competition resulted in me signing the contract to justify the few extra minutes it takes to dress for the occasion.

I also read a phrase in GQ a long time ago that stuck with me, “dress how you feel.”  It’s funny, people will sometimes say to me, “you look like a million bucks,” to which I reply, “I feel like a million bucks.”  When it’s time to do business, I reach for my Canali suits and Zegna ties.  When it’s time to chill at the condo in Costa Rica, I grab my shorts and flip flops.”

Marcello was asked how things were when he broke into the business as  a DJ and to explain the difference on the trade shows and the DJ’s approach to their work today compared to when he started.

He remarked, “I don’t see much of a principle change per se.  There were people who I met at my first show back in 1998 who were really helpful, who exuded passion and who were setting a great example.  And then there were people I met who, well let’s just say, they didn’t fit the same profile.  It’s very similar today.  You need to be open-minded but you’ve also got to be very selective when it comes to choosing your sources of inspiration.  I’m always trying weed out all of the negative influences. I like how Bryan Dodge calls them “bad seeds.”  I’m a firm believer that you are who you surround yourself with.”

Marcello’s opinion on whether technology has helped or hurt our industry was, “I can’t think of any way that technology  has hurt our industry. With programs like PCDJ and Virtual DJ, my performances have become more efficient with regards to preparation and more entertaining with regards to presentation.  The ability to adapt is essential for any industry. I think technology has helped our industry remain generationally relevant in the eyes of savvy prospects.”

What advice would he give to DJs just starting out regardless of their age or to guys who were once DJs in high school or college and decided to return to the industry?

His response was, “Follow your heart, but don’t ignore reality.  If you think this is your calling, go for it.  However, being in the right place at the right time usually requires the willingness to travel.  The key is to find a location and a demographic that will support your quest.”

Finally, I asked this extremely likable colleague what message would he share with part-time DJs doing this as just a hobby to make extra money, or who might be considering making this a full time profession.


NJDJN awards (from left) Ray Martinez, Jake Jacobsen, Randi Rae, Dr. Drax and Marcello Pedalino

“Like anything else in life, every so often, stop, take a breath and reevaluate your situation carefully. I’ve got a very good friend who has an excellent job with enviable benefits.  I’d tell your readers what I told him 8 years ago when he asked if he should become a full-time mobile entertainer.    After careful consideration of his specific wants and needs, I told him there’s no reason why he couldn’t have the best of both worlds.  With the right time management skills and the ability to choose your events wisely, you can continue with your current vocation and build an ancillary career at the same time.  He’s in a very good position in his life right now and I’m very happy for him.”

Words spoken wisely from a young man who knows what success is and is willing to pass on his wisdom to others who seek the same.

The 2013 Celebrate Life Bike Ride with Marcello Pedalino and Friends

IMG_5704 (Large)The 2013 Life is Good Brooklyn Pizza Bike Tour, aka “The Celebrate Life Ride,” was a fabulously-fun outing once again.

It’s a pretty simple formula.  We gather up some really cool people who like to ride their bike and take them on a 35 mile bike tour throughout New York City.

Beyond the fact that it’s a great time, the real reason they all say “yes” is that they know we have a Margarita Pizza picnic at lunchtime courtesy of the world famous Gramaldis.  🙂

IMG_5432 (Large)If you enjoy mixing fun, great conversation, eye candy and incredible pizza with your exercise, send us an e-mail and join us next year!

It was a pleasure to welcome Terri Contaxis, Anthony Vennera and Ian Carr to the Celebrate Life family.

As usual, I snapped a few pics throughout the day… plenty of reminders of how beautiful New York is and how fortunate we are to be surrounded by such awesome friends.

Thanks to the tour veterans Tony Shaughnessy, Scott Murphy, Michael Walter and John Derienzo for bringing all of their positive energy back again.

The MMP Entertainment and Event Production Team helps the world Celebrate Life! MMP is led by Executive Director, 3-Time National DJ Entertainer of the Year and ADJA Leadership Award recipient, Marcello Pedalino.



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