Foreword by DJ Roueche:
If you’ve been around the sport of Volleyball long enough, you’ve probably heard my perspective of being the AVP Tour DJ since 2003, in my 4th season as the official DJ for the Los Angeles Lakers, being a DJ for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro (Mike Tirico called ME the MVP) and a former co-host of The Net Live podcast for 9ish years…. blah blah blah. Boring.
The person you haven’t heard from yet, is my wife. She’s really the more interesting person in our relationship and gets to see the AVP from many more perspectives than I do.
From the sands to the stands, in VIP and the DJ booth.
So, without boring you with my words any more, allow me to introduce you to my wife in Kevin Barnett’s words, “the always beautiful, Nicole Roueche.”
I realize that I’ve been spoiled in the way that I’ve been able to watch my favorite sport and some of the best beach volleyball players in the world. Whether I want to be in the DJ booth, up in the VIP section or down on the sand close to the court, I have the freedom to choose the best spot.
In the DJ booth, I obviously get to see my husband, but it comes with a great view of the court, shade and great conversations with the people who make the AVP what it is. Being with any number of combinations of people up there is the best place to find me watching the battles on championship Sunday. Some of my favorite people that always made it so fun to spend time in the DJ booth:
- Geeter: You’re the best at what you do!
- Jeff Conover: Fopma too if you weren’t playing!
- Laura Day: Your energy is contagious and you’re always ready to sing along with Jeremy’s music
- Donald and Steph Sun: The respect and love you show my husband means everything, and as a fan, what you’ve kept alive and continue to grow is amazing
- Johnny Walter: You always bring my birthday cake/cupcakes and take care of everyone around you—an awesome friend
- Mark Schuermann: You make it look easy and it’s obvious how much you care about the sport
- Kevin Barnett: But why are you even in the DJ booth?
- Josh Glazebrook: These events wouldn’t be as amazing as they are without you!
- Mpu: A sneaky photographer who’s everywhere
There are so many more people I could mention, but it would take up the next 2 pages.
Up in VIP, there are great food and beverage options and usually a great view (it can get crowded and I’m not very tall). You never know who you’ll run into up here, maybe even old friends from college that you haven’t seen in years, so usually there’s time for a friendly cocktail.
On the sand, walking around the many courts, I’m looking for friends who are playing so I can cheer them on, or I’m trying to predict what matchup is going to make for the most exciting game.
For the past 14 years, I’ve been able to watch Jeremy (aka DJ Roueche) carefully craft the energy of the event—something that you might not even think about until one of your favorite songs come on. It’s an aspect that he puts a lot of thought into—the time of day, what day it is (is it Friday morning or Championship Sunday?), what’s happening in the moment, who is playing on Stadium Court in front of him and of course, the city we are in.
There are so many factors that go into the music you hear at every single AVP event, I know I didn’t mention another twenty elements that he considers. Not a single song is repeated in a 10-12 hour day. Imagine trying not to repeat a song in 600 minutes—it’s incredible. And all the while, he is able to make it look so easy. If you’re lucky enough to be in the DJ booth with him, you’ll notice that he’s so good at what he does that he’s able to have conversations with friends, family or anyone who ends up next to him.
You get lost in conversation, completely unaware that the current song is almost over— but not him. His ear is always on what’s next as he seamlessly transitions to the next song. The energy keeps on flowing.
To the fans:
He always thinks about giving you a great experience, so next time you’re at a tournament, give him an extra loud cheer, a wave, or just keep dancing to the amazing music. You’re already amazing for sitting in the stands for hours in the blazing sun.
To the players:
Go introduce yourself if you guys don’t know each other already. Also, if you haven’t played on Stadium Court consistently, I would second guess requesting songs or giving him advice on what music would work. Earn that!
What I do on the home front for Jeremy while he’s working these long days is making sure he eats well.
If it’s a local SoCal event, there will always be a healthy breakfast for him to grab on the go, the go-to options being peanut butter blueberry overnight oats or veggie egg muffins. Lunch is either an open face PB & J (jelly on top obviously) lovingly made by Rich Lambourne, something catered by the AVP or I’ll stop and get something healthy and easy like burritos, grain/veggie bowls or smoothies. I’m a health coach so I love helping people figure out what makes them feel their best whether that’s through food, exercise, meditation/breathwork, mental training, in depth conversation; most likely a combination of all of the above. Find me at www.crescentray.com or on Instagram @nicole.crescentray if you want to hear more!
Regardless of how you experience an AVP event, whether you’re on the sand, in the stands, shaded in VIP or lucky enough to hang in the DJ booth (Jeremy says this was meant for Troy Field), you’re guaranteed to have a great time.
I hope I see you at an event this 2020 season—you can find me wearing my DJ Roueche logo hat!