Erica Armah Bra-Bulu Tandoh discovered DJing when she was only seven years old and has gone on to be featured by the likes of Bill Gates and Jay-Z.
Meet DJ Switch, born as Erica Armah Bra-Bulu Tandoh, the youngest DJ in the world. Born in 2007, she is now 11 years old, but her DJing career took off when she was only seven years old. According to the young star, she chose the name "DJ Switch" because she's really good at switching up people's moods—she can make anyone happy even if they're terribly sad with her music. She's from Ghana and lives in Dadieso in the Western Region of the country. Though Erica has got quite the flourishing DJ career, she still has to keep up her grades at Talented Royals International School at Weija in Accra.
In addition to DJing, the 12-year-old is talented at singing, rapping, and dancing. In June 2018, she became the youngest person to win the Best Discovery Of The Year award at Ghana's annual DJ award competition. At the event, she mounted the stage with a horse and entertained the crowd with her groundbreaking tracks. However, her impressive list of achievements doesn't stop there. In 2019, Jay-Z (yes, the Jay-Z!) recognized her talent and featured her on his entertainment agency Roc Nation's social media for Black History Month. The page wrote, "Today we honor DJ Erica Tandoh (Dj Switch Ghana), a 10-year-old DJ who is the youngest recipient ever to win the Ghana DJ Awards. Her passion for DJing is inspiring; she's known for getting people on their feet dancing and putting everyone in a good mood." She was even invited to perform and speak at billionaire philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates' Goalkeepers event in New York City.
Erica was also named among the top 100 child prodigies at the Global Child Prodigy Awards 2020 held in India. She was subsequently featured in a book about child prodigies and had the opportunity to meet with eminent leaders across the world. Her journey began when she planned to enter the Ghanaian network TV3 show Talented Kidz as a spoken word poet. When her parents encouraged her to do something more "extraordinary," she chose to focus on music. That's when her parents introduced her to a DJ who taught her about how to use turntables and mix songs. "They hired a DJ to train me," the young DJ shared in an interview with CNBC. "And by God’s grace I used five days to learn how to DJ and then went for the audition."
She participated in the eighth season of the show—and won. She was awarded a cash prize of 10,000 Ghanaian cedi (which comes to about $1,800) and it's only been up for her since then. "I felt happy performing for a crowd and audience," Erica said of her time on the show. "I was not feeling shy, and I wanted to give it my best." While she enjoys DJing, she has different plans for the rest of her career: She said, "I want to be a gynecologist to help the women in my community make delivery easy." Her message to other young people like her, however, has not changed. "You are not too young to achieve your dreams, no matter the situation you find yourself in, the circumstance, or surrounding," she said. "Whether you are old or young, see yourself as a great person, because you can achieve anything."