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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman


Campus Spotlight: Mills, Mahmood and a boom box

Jonathan Mills, left, and Riyad Mahmood, right, sitting outside of Mount College where Mahmood got in trouble for playing music inside. Mills said the boys want to bring positivity to the students on campus. RENA THOMAS/THE STATESMAN

A mundane walk through Roth Quad is shaken by the sound of upbeat music radiating over the murky pond. Two boys, surrounding a Brookstone “Big Blue Party Speaker,” can be found sitting on a bench outside of Mount College as people gravitate toward their tunes.

Freshmen Jonathan Mills and Riyad Mahmood are behind the music bumping around the Brook, providing music to anyone willing to listen.

“We like to bring positivity,” Mills, a linguistics major, said. “I define my songs by the emotions I feel with it.”

Mills, along with Mahmood, a biology major, met over the summer in the EOP Program and bonded over their passion for catchy beats. Mills first began playing music outdoors while promoting an event for the Caribbean Culture Club, which he is a member. Mahmood took his music outdoors after being reprimanded for bumping beats too loud in their residence halls. The rest was history.

“Wherever I go the speaker goes,” Mills said. “Except for buildings and classrooms.”

The song “Lean On” by Major Lazer & DJ Snake transitions into “ Viva La Vida” by Coldplay. From pop and punk to reggae and rap, these boys will play anything with great rhythm that gets the people going.

“A lot of people relate to different music,” Mahmood said. “Music brings back memories, music brings good times.”

The two get their music off of places like Soundcloud, Pandora and Apple Music. They compile a list of genres they feel work well together and bring all around good vibes.

However, both Mahmood and Mills said they have never considered a DJ career on a professional level.

Mahmood comes from a family of DJs in Queens, but prefers music as a hobby. Even as amateur DJs, people flock to them.

“Usually when we have the speaker, we have a crowd,” Mahmood said. “We would love to hear recommendations.”

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