Beneath the witty and utterly charming veneer of Chicago’s top deejay beats the performance-pounding pulse of a man whose dedication and passion for music knows no boundary. Upon the inception of the Protégé movement, Charles “Protégé” Wade broke into the industry with one guiding principal: follow your heart. His heart rested solely on the aesthetic appeal of blending music thus producing a distinctive experience for each listener. With the help of friend and colleague, Ryan Henry, Chicago’s leading tattoo artist and socialite, Protégé honed his musical talents through countless house parties.
With the attendees amounting well into the hundreds, Protégé was able to build his fan base. Soon after, he rose to prominence through regular gigs at the Funky Buddha Lounge and Ontourage nightclub. Currently, Protégé serves as the resident DJ for Shrine nightclub, where he has transformed a typical Friday night into one of Chicago’s most diverse parties. “My job is bigger than just making great music. My job is to create an experience where people can leave all of their problems at the front door. Where they are able to forget about that next exam. To forget about that next bill that is due. To forget about the parking tickets they have to pay on Monday. I create experiences which is why I am able to sell out any venue.”
With over 1,000 gigs per year, DJ Protégé has had the opportunity to spin for a variety of artists, celebrities, such as Wale, Derick Rose, Nas, Dwayne Wade, Snoop Dogg, Carl Thomas, Nicki Minaj, Wiz Khalifa, Diddy and Miguel. His mixes have found their way to the airwaves of one of Chicago’s top radio stations, B96 (96.3fm).