DJ Spotlight: Marcello Pedalino

By Stacy Zemon, Publisher & Chief Scribe

I’ve spent a day at the zoo with Marcello Pedalino and watched him stare down a gorilla while munching on a stick of cotton candy.

I’ve even been trapped in a building with him during a bomb threat, and observed Marcello staying calm and focused on the task at hand.

Despite these unusual experiences, they aren’t the reason that this three-time winner of the “DJ of the Year” competition impresses me so much.

It’s Marcello’s attitude, tenacity, and class that have gotten and kept my rapt attention since we met back in 2002.

What I First Noticed About Him

I noticed Marcello attending every trade show that I was attending including the DJ Times Expo, the Mobile Beat Show & Conference, and the now-defunct Mid-America DJ Convention.

There he was at every seminar, always sitting up front, listening attentively, and taking copious notes in his black, leather-bound organizer (those were the pre-iPad days).

Whenever I saw Marcello in the hallways, he was engaged in a conversation with someone new.

I thought to myself, “This guy is really smart.  He’s learning everything he can about the DJ business, and finding out who the ‘movers and shakers’ are.”

I immediately respected Marcello for that, and I have also come to admire him because of how well he has implemented what he’s learned to make his own single-op so successful.

Yet, if you check out, you’ll see that there’s nothing cookie-cutter about him or his company. This extraordinarily talented and handsome man is uniquely, “Marcello.”

While opinions and ideas may abound in our industry, few carry as much weight as his because Marcello has put in the time, energy, and financial investment necessary to excel as an entertainer and a business person.

The Exclusive Interview

PMDJ: What prompted you to become a mobile entertainer?

MP: Initially, it was simply the love of good music and being around happy people in a celebratory setting that drew me to the industry, but I quickly began to appreciate the flexible schedule it offered and the ample compensation that a mobile entrepreneur could earn.

Another perk that made event production alluring was consistently being around exceptional entertainment, cuisine, and hospitality.

PMDJ: What sources did you use to learn your craft?

MP: I continue to attend every industry-related conference that my schedule permits, and take people that are more talented and smarter than me out to lunch as often as I can.

Traveling has also played an essential role in my skill-set development.  When you venture out of your own zip code as well as your own comfort zone, you’re exposed to noteworthy techniques and lucrative enhancements that are either untried or considered too progressive by your local circle of influence.

I’ve been fortunate to meet men and women over the years with a willingness to share secrets of their millionaire mindset, vivacious outlook, and physical discipline.

PMDJ: How did you decide upon your personal style of DJing, and the type of business to run?

MP: When I was in high school, my mother introduced me to Nordstrom.  They are a first-class fashion retailer who cater to a discerning clientele that appreciates understated elegance and celebrating life with style.

That’s when I learned about the boutique business model of being considered “expensive, but worth it.”

If your product is above and beyond the competition in quality, and your overall customer experience yields dramatically different results compared to what’s being offered in your market, the price justification is not only accepted…it’s appreciated and enthusiastically recommended to friends and family.

This school of thought also fueled my desired lifestyle of “working less and living more.”

PMDJ: What have been your greatest professional rewards?

MP: It’s always a nice feeling to be recognized for your talent or character. When the judges and my industry peers felt that I earned the “DJ of the Year” awards and then the American Disc Jockey Association Leadership Award, they made for some unforgettable moments that I’ll always treasure and look back upon fondly.

Also, because it was such an arduous qualification process, when my application was accepted by the Wedding Entertainment Directors Guild, I suppose it was as rewarding as earning a Master’s Degree or Doctorate in a field of elite specialists…at least it was for someone like me who didn’t graduate from college.

PMDJ: Will you take a run at the” DJ of the Year” competition for a fourth time?

MP: Since no other entertainer has ever won the competition back-to-back, and since my third “DJ of the Year” title came the last time I competed, I’ve decided to go out while I’m on top.

As a casual sports fan and former blackjack enthusiast, I’ve seen on occasion what can happen when you don’t quit while you’re ahead.  Furthermore, I’m honored and flattered now to have an annual seat reserved at the judges’ table.

Then again, I’ve also learned to never say never…

PMDJ: What are your future goals?

MP: On a personal level, I want to be a great dad to my beautiful little girl and just keep on celebrating life every day.

Professionally, I’d like to continue pursuing a steady track of business education and performance training so the high expectations of my demanding clientele are consistently met or exceeded.

Barring any unforeseen circumstances, I hope to live with vigor until I’m 80+ years old like some of my friends from the gym.  That means I’ve got an entire second lifetime to live it up and explore the world.

Since I’ve acquired a little wisdom that comes with age, and plenty of passion that comes from being a curious kid who believes one can always be forever young at heart, this is a very exciting time to be alive.

PMDJ: Do you have any sage advice for our visitors?

MP: Sage is pretty subjective but I’ll give it a shot.  First, all of my mentors say the same thing…“Time is more valuable than money.”  He with ‘the most toys’ used to win the proverbial game of life back in the day – but we now know that that was a misunderstood delusion.

It’s actually he with ‘the most time’ to enjoy the fruits of his labor that has legitimately discovered contentment and genuine fulfillment.

Second, learning to say “no” and going to bed early are sometimes the only ways you can make 24 hours in a day be enough time to live a balanced life of health and wellness.

It’s easier said than done and you’ll probably have to make some difficult personal decisions as a result, but you’ll ultimately start sleeping better, performing better, living better and making the most out of your precious journey.

Most importantly, you’ll become a more productive, empathetic, and influential companion to the family members and friends that will still be by your side 20 years down the line.

And third, start swimming and taking Yoga to learn how to heal and strengthen your mind, body, and soul.

You can write to Marcello Pedalino c/o


  • Stacy Zemon is the Founder, Former Publisher and Former Chief Scribe of She is a veteran DJ Entertainer who is widely considered an authority on the DJ business, and has become a distinguished industry leader over the course of her illustrious 30+ year career. Stacy’s mission is to provide educational resources for DJs that support their professional growth and financial prosperity. She is a longtime writer for DJ Times magazine, and author of the world’s best-selling DJ books: The Mobile DJ Handbook, The DJ Sales & Marketing Handbook and The Mobile DJ MBA. Stacy is a self-described serial entrepreneur (Equal parts creativity and business). From her efforts, she has spawned more professional disc jockey business owners than any other person in the mobile DJ industry!

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