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RIP Brother Jules, DJ for Prince and KMOJ

Julian White was part of the first generation of Minneapolis hip-hop DJs, beginning as a teen in the '80s.

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Julian White, better known to Minneapolis clubgoers, radio listeners, and Prince fans as Brother Jules, died on Saturday, December 4, according to an announcement on his Instagram.

A longtime DJ on 89.9 FM, KMOJ, who became Prince’s go-to DJ in the ’90s, White died from complications after an “accidental fall,” the post said.

White got his start DJing in the ’80s, during the early days of Twin Cities hip-hop, when he was just 13. “Bernadette Anderson, who was Andre Cymone’s mother, had a teen club where the YWCA is now in Uptown,” he told Harry Colbert Jr. of Insight News in 2019. “I started spinning for my peers there.” And he started on the best: The club was equipped with a set of Technics 1200s.

While still in high school, White worked his way into an overnight slot at KMOJ, which meant busing home from north Minneapolis to south at dawn. When the Prince-affiliated nightclub Glam Slam opened in downtown Minneapolis, manager Sharon Smith hired him.

As White told Colbert, “After I did my thing, two guys, Joey and Dwayne--Prince’s bodyguards--came up to me and said, ‘The boss wants you out at Paisley Park.’” Jules went.

This was the beginning of a long relationship. Jules would work at several of Prince’s clubs, including a two-year stint in Tokyo.

Heartfelt testimonials from people who knew White, either personally or through his music, filled social media yesterday.

Prince’s social media sites issued a statement mourning White as “a frequent presence at Prince's Paisley Park afterparties in the 1990s and whose scratching can be heard on the New Power Generation album Exodus.”

“Bar none, Brother Jules is the most prolific jock to spin the wheels of steel and was always willing to pass his knowledge along to aspiring Dee Jays,” KMOJ general manager Freddie Bell said on Facebook.

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