Listen Up: 6 Metro Detroit DJs to Know Right Now

These local entertainers will have you dancing all night long
Metro Detroit DJs
Mary Ann Ross photograph courtesy of Jeffrey Lewis Bennett

Whether it’s a sporting event, a black-tie party, or a wedding, disc jockeys are a go-to source for entertainment. Yet, finding the perfect entertainer can be difficult in a city where music is everywhere. From classic tunes to electronic mashups, these are six metro Detroit DJs to look out for.

Mary Ann Ross

Wedding and event performer Mary Ann Ross has worked as a DJ for over 25 years in the Detroit area. “I got my start in high school when my theater teacher recommended that I apply for a job at Bonaventure Roller Rink,” Ross says. “I was the first female DJ spinning vinyl and cassettes and had the coolest job of anyone at Mercy High School.” Having formerly worked in the restaurant industry, Ross prides herself on her ability to collaborate with event staff to create a memorable experience. While her favorite genre is Motown, she has an extensive collection of music and believes that quality trumps quantity. For more information, visit

DJ Tom T

This Toronto native, who now spins in Detroit, has performed across the globe. With gigs taking him to Dubai and India, Thomas Thankachan has headlined events with performers like Jazzy Jeff and Kaskade. “My first job as a kid was in a record store, my interest in DJing stemmed from that experience,” Thankachan says. More recently, his interests have shifted to producing music. Working on his label Detox Recordings with Miami native A.D. Cruze, Thankachan aims to promote and develop local Detroit artists. DJ Tom T will be performing at the Ferndale Pride Celebration at Rosie O’Grady’s on June 1. For more information, visit

Metro Detroit DJs
Meryl Waldo photograph courtesy of Rob Woodcox

Meryl Waldo

University of Michigan alumni Meryl Waldo is the founder of The Haute Knot, a boutique DJ firm. This award-winning DJ performs at weddings all over the metro Detroit area. Waldo, who also goes by the DJ name Scout, is an open-format DJ and works with her clients to compile the perfect sound for their event. “In college, I began DJing and won a competition that was sponsored by Red Bull,” Waldo says. “DJing is the perfect marriage of my love for curating music and presenting a live experience.” In addition to weddings, Waldo has held residencies at MGM Grand Casino’s V Nightclub and Live Nightclub in Ann Arbor. For more information, visit

DJ Thornstryker

Beginning her career at a Milford karaoke bar, Emily Thornhill has been DJing since her early 20s. Formerly a personal stylist, Thornhill was signed as the first female DJ for the Detroit Pistons in 2014. Along with her prominent career near the basketball court, Thornhill also performs at special events and Detroit clubs like Temple Bar and Deluxx Fluxx. And, despite her versatile collection of music from all genres, Thornhill favors electronic, funk, and nu-disco. For more information, visit

Metro Detroit DJs
Wajeed photograph courtesy of Dirt Tech Reck


At 14 years old, Waajeed began his career as a DJ for the hip-hop group Slum Village. He received a full scholarship to Detroit’s College for Creative Studies. Just months before graduating, Waajeed left CCS to pursue his music career. His desire for musical and creative freedom led him to develop his label project, Dirt Tech Reck, in 2012. “As a producer and DJ, it’s my job to be an ambassador of my birthplace,” he says. “It’s amazing to see people’s response to our uniqueness. It’s priceless.” For more information, visit

DJ Holographic

Underground Detroit DJ Ariel Corley, also known as DJ Holographic, was recently listed as one of DJ Mag’s 11 emerging artists to listen to. Mixing house beats with Detroit Motown sounds, Corley has performed at festivals all over the United States. The pink-haired artist has spent the past eight years building her experience, opening for acts like Black Madonna and Carl Craig. With plans to spread her music globally, Corley will be touring Europe from July 1 to Aug. 31 while promoting her upcoming E.P., Parallel Shifting. For more information, visit

Related: On the Record