MIAMI OR BUST: DJ Euphonik  (real name Themba Mbongeni Nkosi) says travel has been the best thing on which he has spent his money. Picture: © THE TIMES
MIAMI OR BUST: DJ Euphonik (real name Themba Mbongeni Nkosi) says travel has been the best thing on which he has spent his money. Picture: © THE TIMES

Themba Mbongeni Nkosi, aka DJ Euphonik, is riding a wave of success. He has been chosen to open for major artists such as Missy Elliott, Blu Cantrell, Mzekezeke and Zola. He and DJ Fresh make a formidable team as F.Eu and various other related projects and gigs have made him a household name.

DJ Fresh and Euphonik recently released their first F.Eu album under Euphonik's record label, Soul Candi. Euphonik never intended to go into radio when he started building a name for himself as a DJ.

He took up the challenge when 5FM called him out of the blue offering him his own show. Despite his success, Euphonik has maintained a level-headed approach to the world and still washes the dishes when he goes to his mother's house.

 He tells Tina Weavind how he spends his money

Are you a saver or a spender?

I'm a huge saver. I'm constantly worried about the future, so I always try to make sure I have enough for it. But I've recently started loosening up a bit and enjoying the fruits of my work.

What is your biggest extravagance?

Hands down, it's technology and the latest gadgets. I don't compromise or question when it comes to new DJ gear, communication tools and software or apps to make my life easier. I also spend a considerable amount on takeaway food because of my lifestyle.

What is the one thing you wish you had never bought?

Apple products. I feel like the minute I start enjoying them, Apple brings out another model and I feel like I should have skipped a model generation.

What is the best thing you have spent money on?

Travelling the world. In Zulu, they say ukuhamba ukubona, which means to travel is to see. And, boy, did I see!

Do you invest in shares?

I have long-term policies that are share based, but for me right now my biggest concern is growing my company and property portfolio before I start investing heavily in other people's businesses, especially when I don't have control over them.

Do you ever shop online?

I'm slowly getting the hang of it and getting over my trust issues.

What was your first job and how much did you earn?

I was a paper boy in my neighbourhood getting R40 a week.

How do you prefer to pay for things - cash or card?

Definitely credit card, because at the end of the month I have a trail of every single cent I spend. I always go through the necessary and unnecessary expenses.

Have you ever been really short of cash?

Yes, of course, especially after I moved out of home when I was 18. It taught me to be self-reliant. I know what it feels like to be down and out.

What was the most lucrative job you have ever done?

I'm currently doing it. Not only is DJing lucrative, it's also my passion.

Do you give money to beggars?

I used to until I offered one of the beggars a job working in the garden and he told me rudely: "I make more money standing here than in your garden." Since then, I don't give them the time of day.

What is the most important lesson you have learnt about money?

I read a book called The Richest Man in Babylon and I apply the one rule they stress in the book. You need to live on 70% of your income, donate 10%, give 10% to God and keep 10% forever.

Do you have a financial adviser?

Yes. I'm not a money expert and it's been a good idea to hire one.

What did your childhood teach you about money?

My dad always said I could have whatever I want as long as I came up with half the money. That lesson alone taught me that money is something that doesn't come easy. It needs to be worked for.

If you won R10-million, what would you spend it on?

I'd give half to my parents, pay off my debt and use the rest to build myself as a bigger DJ brand through innovative marketing strategies.

In which city of the world would you most like to own a house or apartment?

Miami. I love that city and I visit it once a year without fail.

What city in the world could you never be paid enough to live in?

Anywhere in Dubai. I hate the heat. I really can't stand it.

*This article was first published in Sunday Times: Money & Careers