Brains and beats: Dance music's academically-inclined

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While you don’t need a qualification to hit the decks (or even musical talent, as the cast of Jersey Shore have proven), plenty of DJs nonetheless have academic credentials to their name. So who are these intellectual beatmakers? We’ve compiled a list of some of the most noteworthy scholarly music types to serve as a reminder that with dedicated study, you too could grow up to be a rich and famous DJ!*

Armin van Buuren
Before Armin took up his position as the reigning king of trance, he studied Law at Leiden University in his native The Netherlands. When his DJing started to take off, Armin deferred his studies but went back to finish his degree in 2003 – you know, just in case the music thing ever falls through.

Before he was collaborating with the likes of Skream, English rapper Example was busy getting a degree in Film Directing from the University of London.

Diplo, who recently published his book 128 Beats Per Minute, studied Film at the University of Central Florida before transferring to Temple University to complete his degree.

Kaskade (or Ryan Raddon, as his degree reads) studied at the University of Utah after serving two long, pious years in a fulltime mission for the LDS Church.

Steve Aoki
Well, this is surprising: prior to founding Dim Mak, Steve Aoki received two bachelor degrees, one in Sociology and one in Women’s Studies. For serious.

Turns out bro-stepper Rusko learnt the fine art of the drop at Leeds College, where he studied Music Performance.

Fatboy Slim
Before he became Fatboy Slim, the Hawaiian shirt-wearing, Future Music Festival-headlining Norman Cook received a BA from the University of Brighton, majoring in English, Politics and Sociology.

When it comes to intellectual DJs, it’s hard to go past Moby. The politically-outspoken vegan began studying Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, but dropped out to work at a record store – before becoming super famous. What a dude.

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