MTV’s Siesta Key is a popular reality series that took the world by storm as soon as it hit the airwaves, introducing us to a group of friends, who are, individually and collectively, just trying to find their way.
WJBF Digital talks with one of the stars of the hit series, Brandon Gomes, and he shares with us his journey, which includes his love for music and his emergence on the DJing scene.
What inspired your passion for music?
It was really just listening to rap and listening to some of my favorite artists as a kid like Big Boi and Andre 3000. It was also really listening to artists that I just gravitated towards eventually in my teenage years like Wiz Khalifa – he’s a big inspiration of mine. I just like taking about what I see from my perspective. I like rhyming. I like putting it into songs and rhyming so I just risked it and said, “This is what I wanna do. I want to be in entertainment. I love music. This is what I love to do so I’m going to go for it.”
I know you mentioned rap, but what are your favorite genres of music?
I also DJ, so I have a wide ear for music. I love hip hop, I love R&B, I like, more recently, pop… I like reggaetón, house music… I really listen to it all. I sing, and I rap, myself, and produce, so I guess I love hip hop; hip hop is my favorite.
Now, let’s get into Siesta Key, which is what we mostly know you for. How did you get involved with the series?
So, I grew up in Sarasota, Florida, which is the county that Siesta Key is in, and I knew a lot of people growing up just through mutual friends. I really just got approached about it because one of my friends was bringing a show to town, and they shot a pilot and looking for people to come be a good personality. I showed up to a dinner at the Hard Rock Casino, and it seemed like shortly after that, they had a 30-person production crew at my front door, and we were just rolling with it. It sort of happened fast.
How was that adjustment for you going from living an average life and then having all of these cameras in your face documenting your life?
It is something that you have to know what you’re signing up because it is a complete difference. Nothing will ever be the same just as far as trying to live a normal and private life. Everything to me right now is public. Everything is out there, and everyone wants to know what’s going on. It was an adjustment for sure. It was tough just understanding that everyone from the outside looking in has such a set perspective of who I am and a set perspective of relating me to the show and everything about of the show, and they are not realizing that you’re a complete person outside of the show. So, it was a lot mentally and moving forward, but this is what I signed up for, and I’m still on that road to get to where I got to go. So, I like it. I can’t complain.
So, the show itself moved to Miami this past season, and audience members saw that you mostly basically stayed out of the drama this season. Was that intentional on your part?
Yeah, I think naturally, I’m not really a dramatic person. I wouldn’t really consider myself a realty TV star. I’ve always been in entertainment, and I’ve always been lowkey to myself in real life. Now, mind you, if you go back a couple of seasons, I’ve been in the middle of a lot of drama so I can’t sit here and say I’ve been scot-free throughout my whole Siesta Key career. (Laughs) I have a son now. As I’m getting older and as things are starting to come in reality for me, I’m just focused on myself. I’m focused on getting to where I have to go; I’m focused on assets, taking care of people, being just a real man and a genuine person. A lot of times when the drama comes around if I don’t have to be in it, then, I’m not going to be in it. (Laughs) That’s sort of where I’ve been at this last season in Miami.
Now, the finale episode of Siesta Key was kind of like a “Last Supper” type of deal with everyone coming together and the flashbacks. Was that the last season of Siesta Key? What’s going on with the show, and what can you tell us?
MTV does a real good job keeping things open-ended; you don’t really know. It’s not like they told me, “This is the last show we’re doing. That’s it. Goodbye.” It’s not like they said that. In my opinion, we’ve been on the air for 5 years; we all got to grow up on the show. I’ve been on the show since I was 21-22, and I’m 27 now. I think we’ve captured a lot. Do I think it’s the end? Maybe not. Maybe. But I do feel like we’re going to take a breather here for a second at the bare minimum.
Now, you did mention DJing earlier, and we did get to see you DJ on the show. What pushed you in that direction?
So, a couple of close mentors of mine like Will [Dzombak], who is the co-founder of Taylor Gang with Wiz Khalifa; he’s Wiz Khalifa’s manager. Will told me that I should get into DJing, and a couple other friends of mine told me that I should get into DJing because I have this brand now. I have MTV behind me, I have a following, I have a platform, and I love music. So, I just thought of it as an avenue to get in front of people and have more of a way of actually bringing something of value there. I’ve done so many meet-and-greets where I just show up to your town and shake hands and what not. But I think it would be a better avenue for me because it’s in music, I can spin my own songs when I DJ, and I can get paid more when I go cities to DJ and do a meet-and-greet. Shout out to Pauly D (of Jersey Shore and Jersey Family Vacation), who is also on MTV. He’s been killing it in DJing; it’s sort of like that brand. He has a big personality and a big backing, and he goes and kills shows. So, I’m just trying to take advantage of everything that I can take advantage of, and that’s something I enjoy. I enjoy playing music, I enjoy getting people to dance, and with having a new ear for music, I enjoy hearing new songs and hearing other people’s sets. I think DJing is just an outlet where I get to go and have fun, play music, get paid, and showcase my music.
Where can audiences see you DJing next?
Next, on March 7th, I will be in Jacksonville [Florida] at Sugar DJing. I have a brand called SIESTA G; it’s a cannabis brand. So, I’ll be out there DJing at an event that we’re throwing at Sugar. After that, March 16th, I’ll be at Union Hall in Lakeland [Florida]. After that, Spring Break is coming up so when Spring Break’s around, I’m out everywhere I can possibly be. So, if you follow me on Instagram or follow me throughout social media, definitely stayed tuned to what I have going on. It’s going to be a big year.
Speaking of big year, do you have any new music, and if so, where can we listen to it?
So, I just dropped a song called “Life Of The Party” across all platforms. I also just dropped another song with the end of Siesta Key – the finale – it’s called “All I Want” with Teenar, who is also on the show with me. So, those are the two songs that just came out within the last couple of months. My birthday is April so I plan to be heavy with the content and heavy with being in every city, showing up, shaking hands, playing music, doing gigs, and allowing the people to come giving them a place to come and vibe out. So, between March and April expect a lot of events from me.
What advice from the lessons you’ve learned on your journey could you give someone who wants to get into music and the entertainment business?
I say do it because you love it. I’ve met so many people who try to get into music for the wrong reasons, and then, they end up fizzling out. You have to understand that music is entertainment, and it’s art. It takes a while to build solid fan bases. It takes a while to get recognition so if you love it, you don’t get drained. On top of that, I say that you need to focus on business as well because music is expensive. You have to take your business seriously. You have to have other outlets and other brands and platforms that you’re working on so that you can push your music through that. For any new artist, just believe in yourself, and don’t be scared. Don’t blame anyone for why you’re not putting music out; don’t blame anyone for why you’re not working or why you’re not reaching out to people to try and get more to try and get more out of it. Get after it and focus on the business.
For more information on Brandon Gomes, his DJing events, or to follow him on social media, go to his website, brandongomes.com.