Richard Quitevis (born October 7, 1969) known by his stage name DJ Qbert or Qbert, is a turntablist and composer.
Growing up in San Francisco's Excelsior District on Moscow Street, he graduated from Luther Burbank Middle School and in 1987 from Balboa High School. Qbert started playing with records at the age of 15, although he got his first Fisher-Price turntable as a toddler. He was influenced by the street performers and graffiti artists of the local hip hop community in the mid-1980s. It was at Balboa's school cafeteria that he went up against Mix Master Mike. The two are good friends.
Qbert started his musical career in a group called FM20 with Mix Master Mike and DJ Apollo in 1990. In New York when playing a show, Crazy Legs saw them and invited them to join the Rock Steady Crew. They accepted the offer to join the crew. Going by the name Rock Steady DJs, they then proceeded to take the 1992 Disco Mix Club World DJ Championships (DMC) world title. Qbert was also one of the founding members of the band Invisibl Skratch Piklz. Although there were other turntablist crews before the Invisibl Skratch Piklz, the Skratch Piklz were the first to apply the band concept to turntablism, layering drums, basslines, and scratch solos on top of each other.
Qbert, along with other Skratch Piklz, created a series of videos entitled Turntable TV. Now out of print, the first 5 episodes were released on VHS and contained demonstrations, showcases, skits, and other DJ related content.
Qbert's solo efforts include 1994's Demolition Pumpkin Squeeze Musik, and 1998's Wave Twisters. The latter album was created mainly with samplers and beat machines versus the turntable, and later turned into an animated feature of the same title. The Wave Twisters (2001) movie was somewhat unusual in that the animators and digital artists had to invent images and movements to the pre-recorded music, as opposed to the other way around (although not unprecedented; Disney's Fantasia was made the same way).
More recently, he has worked with Vestax to develop the QFO, an all-in-one scratching instrument. The QFO combines a turntable with a mixer's crossfader. In 2006, he introduced the Qbert turntable cartridge, a model put out by Ortofon.
In May, 2009, Qbert launched the Qbert Skratch University, an interactive online learning school and community for DJs.
In a 2011 interview with the website WeBeVegan.org, Qbert stated that he is a vegan.
Qbert's music was featured in the video game Tony Hawk's Underground and he appeared as himself on the Slam City Jam level. He also appeared as himself in DJ Hero 2.
Awards and credentials:
America's Best DJ 2010,
DMC USA Champion 1991 (solo),
DMC World Champion 1992 - Rock Steady DJs (Qbert, Mixmaster Mike & Apollo),
DMC World Champion 1993 - Dreamteam (Qbert & Mixmaster Mike),
DMC World Champion 1994 - Dreamteam (Qbert & Mixmaster Mike) ***,
DMC Judge 2012 (what you heard?),
DMC DJ Hall of Fame (along with Mix Master Mike),
Featured in Hang the DJ by Marco & Mauro La Villa
Cannes Film Festival, France,
Appears in the documentary film Modulations
Sundance Festival, Utah,
Appears in the documentary Scratch
Sundance Festival, Utah,
Appears in his own animated/live action movie Wave Twisters