From hobby to hire


Annie Goodman

Mary Ruth Corwin, also known as DJ Rooftop, started working as a DJ at Cate Street Pub last December.

Annie Goodman, Editor-In-Chief

Senior art major Mary Ruth Corwin grew up in a musically inclined family but never learned to make music herself. Although she held interest in dance and musical theatre as she grew into adulthood, fate would have her join her family in the blending of melodies.

Corwin, also known as DJ Rooftop, received a job as a DJ at Cate Street Pub last December by chance when her friend, who is a bartender there, asked her to come play music during his shift on Tuesday nights.

“It was Christmas break, so no one was really there,” said Corwin. “One of the first weeks I was there playing music, the owner came in and came up to me like, ‘You like doing this?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, I’m having fun.’ So, he was like, ‘I want you to come back in a few days.’ It just kind of grew from there.”

Corwin, who worked Fridays and Saturdays over the summer and Thursdays and Saturdays during the school year, has an eclectic music taste with a particular soft spot for music from her childhood.

“I like seeing people react to music, seeing their reaction to how I like music,” said Corwin. “I play stuff from today, new stuff, and I like 2000’s hip hop and R&B, stuff that makes you think back to middle school. It brings everyone together. You’re looking next to you, and it’s a stranger, but you both know the song. It’s nice.”

Since beginning work at Cate Street Pub, Corwin has had a few opportunities to branch out and grow her skills at events such as the “Tickfaw 200” and private Greek parties.

“One of the workers at Cate Street got me a gig for Sun Buns, which is a bar on Tickfaw River,” said Corwin. “I DJed there during the ‘Tickfaw 200.’ I was really nervous for that. It started off with an older crowd, people like my parent’s age. So, I had to switch gears and play oldies, which is what I grew up on from being good friends with my dad. Then, the younger crowd started coming in, so I was able to play more of my taste that I listen to every day.”

Corwin uses her skills she has learned as a graphic design student to promote herself through social media.

Corwin said, “Some people laugh at first, which makes sense, like how’d this even happen? It baffles me sometimes. I just shrug like, ‘Yeah, I’m doing it, and I’m making good money doing it too.’”

To see when Corwin will be working as DJ Rooftop, visit her Instagram at theruthisonfiyaaa, Snapchat at maryruth or Twitter at maryruth454.

“I’ll finish out through college as long as it keeps going well,” said Corwin. “It’s just a hobby for now, but if it turns into something, it turns into something.”