Sensational DJ Bernazo aka Bernard Katende has been in the entertainment industry for a very good time. With his vast experience in disk spinning, we caught up with and shared a lot. He has plans of joining the top management of UNAA.
Who is Bernard K. Katende aka DJ Bernazo?
This is a huge question! Well, I am a father of three. I am actually a Salongo. I am a very friendly, outgoing person and love positive energy.
On the social scene we know you as DJ Bernazo, while in other communities you’re well known as a health expert. How did this come about?
Well, I loved music all along. I used to be a good dancer. Actually I sang with Chameleon. We had a group called Ultimate 2 group. I later moved to Rwanda and Burundi as a DJ. From there, managed to get my visa to the US. Reaching in the US, life wasnt wasnt easy. I realized Deejaying couldn’t put food on the table.As a man i decided to look for away out. I decided to go back to school.I enrolled for a bachelor’s degree as i kept working as a DJ. Good enough,i managed to complete school. I got a degree and now working as a refugee mental health coordinator for the state of main working for catholic charities. During the day I am in the office and at night I go to clubs playing music. That is how I juggle my life.
Tell us, how is life as a DJ?
Life as a DJ is amazing. You start and get fame. But as life goes on, the fun dies off gradually. You start taking it seriously as a Job. I am happy people back in Uganda have taken Deejaying so seriously and surviving on it. Personally as a DJ I made so many contacts. It is those contacts that helped me get to where I am now.
Is Deejaying a better profession than a Health worker?
Well, In Deejaying, you’re being paid for having fun. You’re making money but in the health sector this is humanitarian work. You help other people which is also a good thing. Sometimes it is not all about having fun. You need to help people.
Wait, so you studied mental health? How did you end up here?
Yes,I studied applied science in human services. So there are a lot different course units under it. Those course units are the ones making my work easy now. of them in this course.
At what age did you leave Uganda? And what did you leave to do abroad?
I came to the US when I was 26 years old. Like any other focused man, i had alot of ambitions that needed to be achieved.So as Destiny had it, i ended up here.
Briefly share your experience as a Mental Health care coordinator?
This is what happens. I am working with catholic charities responsible for all refugees in the state of Maine.I work in the section of mental screening.I meet so many people with different issues and the experience of offering help is so amazing. They get to share with me their experience. Its amazing.
Your line of work involves dealing with unstable minds, share your experience so far?
I would not necessarily say that people have unstable minds. It is simply dealing with someone who simply needs to talk to someone. Everyone gets such moments in life where the mind is its lowest point and need an encouraging word to gey better . I deal with people who are depressed and that depression affects their working life.
Fair enough, let’s talk about UNAA, You announced your candidature for office of council Representative New England Region in UNAA, What motivated you to contest now?
I have been participating in UNAA for a long time. Usually, after the convention has been held, people move on past it. It disappears from people’s minds until the next one. I need to change this. Also, I meet up with people with different ideas about the convention which i will represent when I join. So I felt like I needed to be part of it and bring people’s ideas to the table.
UNAA usually is attended by little old people and youth are left behind. Being in the category of the youth I feel I need to bring them together in different styles. Like in football, basketball and such.
So when we have these young people get recognized in UNAA, it helps them change their lives. Also in education, we can start a culture of sponsoring these young people. Education on this side is too expensive.
What has been your contribution to UNAA?
I have been a member for a long time. I pay for membership. I have been a DJ at UNAA also. They don’t pay us that much to perform during the convention. I have been giving back to UNAA using my talent by playing music. I am also so involved in activities in my community in so many ways.
How are you ready to use the UNAA office to change the situation back here in Uganda?
We shall use our office to advocate for human rights. We shall use our offices to help Ugandans who want to come abroad for different reasons such as for education, Businesses, donations and many other ways.
Lastly, you’re an entertainer, what is your take on the entertainment industry back here in Uganda. What are your plans for this industry when you finally get this office?
The industry has grown at a good speed. It is where it is supposed to be but it will get there. Our artists need to get reorganized internationally. The only bad thing is the industry is so disorganized.
For example, there are musicians that can no longer handle doing business alone. They need a management team. Unfortunately, our musicians are still behind in such things. These days it is not all about the voice. It is beyond that.