At age 12, Tim Martinez fell in love with rock and roll. Raised in a born again Christian family, it was the unexpected and foreign sounds of Nirvana, Hole and Soundgarden that really compelled him. By the time Marilyn Manson hit the scene, he was hooked. His passion for rock scored him his first job in the music industry, working for FUSE TV Network's metal show, Uranium. It was around this time he evolved into Tim No. 37 and before he knew it, he found himself becoming a popular DJ, host and a prominent face in the metal scene. His journey to pursue his dreams hasn't always been easy and his 15 tattoos definitely reveals his story of love and pain. I notice a tattoo of Marilyn Manson's autograph and he candidly shares with me that Manson's music helped him during a time in his life when he was battling severe depression and too afraid to come out as a gay man. Now, open about his sexuality and an active advocate for social rights, it is easy to see that music became his savior and his ink is really a portrait of his triumphs.
Contributor: Mika Kenyah
I first met you at a show where you were DJing. How did you get into being a DJ?
I started DJing in 2005 at a local metal bar in Brooklyn. Just started as something fun, one of the closest people in my life, my "sister", Unique, needed a DJ for her metal/fetish night and I had been making mixed tapes for house parties for years so she asked me "will you do it? I think you can" and I tried it out. I didn't really take it seriously at first and then I found myself DJing at venues like Highline Ballroom, Gramercy Theater, Irving Plaza and I was like "well now...guess people like what I'm playing! haha"....
Where did the name Tim No. 37 come from and what does it mean?
The name "No 37" has been with me since 2001. I was trying to think of a really cool name to use on my favorite bands' message boards (remember those? the ORIGINAL online communities! haha) and I was obsessed with Numerology when I was a teen so between that and watching The Mothman Prophecies, the number 37 stuck with me. Everything in life happens in a cycle of 3s. Good times, bad. Births, deaths. The number 7 is the balance and beauty everyone searches for in their life. 3 + 7 = 10. The number 0 is dropped because its not acknowledged in Numerology (means nothing) and comes back down to the number 1. Which represents a person's soul and mind. You're in charge of your own success or failure. So I went with No 37 for the boards! Over time it became "Tim No 37".
What projects/shows are you now producing/hosting?
I produce alot of my own events under "Tim No 37 Presents". I am also a co-producer of the No Mercy Metal series with Tech-9 Music, Gotham Rocks and 2 Legit Booking. I also have a couple of other companies I have signed on to produce events with such as Legion Promotions in New Jersey.
Who are some notable people you have worked with and currently working with?
I've been blessed to have made a career in entertainment with the music I love and work with some of the most amazing people alive. It all started when my best friend, Juliya, had her own show on the FUSE TV Network called Uranium and she bought me on board and I ended up in front of the camera quite a bit. I also got to tour for a bit on Ozzfest. I've met many of the artists I grew up idolizing and have become good friends with most of them. I will ALWAYS thank Juliya for kicking open the door for me to be able to do what I love. Trying to answer "who are some notable people I've worked with" is very difficult so I'll just say I'm completely blessed.
I love the fact that you use your popularity within the metal scene to become an advocate for social rights issues. I know you created an event called Hate the Hate...What is it and why did you start it?
HATE the HATE is an anti-bullying and suicide awareness event that I created in January of 2011. After my own experience with a bias attack in late 2010, I realized that this is the fear so many youths have been killing themselves because of. So I wanted to do something about it. As someone with a bit of "popularity" I wanted to use it to do good. As an openly gay man who loves heavy metal and rock & roll I used my connections and contacted bands and some of my celebrity friends to put together a live concert event and raise money for The Trevor Project, The Hetrick-Martin Institute, The It Gets Better Project and The American Foundation of Suicide Prevention. There have been 3 HATE the HATE events(one was an anniversary event) so far and I've had performances by Mina Caputo (formerly Keith Caputo of Life of Agony), KHZ, The August Infinity, Star Killer, Ghosts of Eden, Charetta and so many more! As well as appearances and support from friends of mine like Chef Chris Santos, Cisely Saldana, Mia Tyler, Tyler Burrow, Jennifer Arroyo, Dave Delzio, Joey James Hernandez, Otep Shamaya, Tommy Vext, of course my bff Juliya Chernetsky and so many more. All these amazing people have donated their time, their talent and their names to help me raise so far over $3,000 for these organizations and I can't thank all these talented people as well as all of the fans that continue to support me and what I do.
You are pretty tatted up but which tattoo means the most to you?
There are 3 that mean equally as much to me. My Paul Booth piece on my right arm which is his interpretation of the Libra scales means the world to me because (since we've been friends for nearly a decade now) he knows me so well that within the piece that are little details that only I know are there and what they stand for that mean alot. My Marilyn Manson autograph on my left leg because Manson's music basically saved me as a teenager. Being gay and hiding it, dealing with depression, bipolar disorder and cutting Manson's music just made me feel better and that I was not alone or evil/strange/weird, ya know? And lastly, my "broken" tattoo going down the middle of my chest. I've had my heart broken to the point that I didn't want to live. I almost threw away so much of what I dreamed and wanted because of someone else and went into a severe depression and self destructive path. It reminds me that I've been broken, but I'm still here and I'm stronger than ever. After being single for 6 years and working on myself, I'm now ready to be in a relationship again, stronger and wiser than before. And ready to be fixed, hahahaha ;)
What advice would you give someone who wants to get into the music industry?
Make sure you know what you're getting yourself into. Its a long, hard road. If you're doing this for the money, find another career because there isn't much in music nowadays (especially in metal and rock & roll). Make sure you do this for the love of the music itself. Be prepared to have your heart ripped out and stomped on. Be prepared to feel like you're going completely insane. Be prepared to be backstabbed, be lied to, be used and abused BUT, most importantly, Be prepared for the greatest ride you can ever be on. Its truly incredible. I can't imagine doing anything else.
What is your goal for the future?
My goal for the future is to keep rockin & rollin. Keep headbanin and keep my horns held high. I want to continue being a face for the music I love and I want to continue being the advocate I am to help find a way to stop bullying and suicide. especially in the gay community. I want youths that are scared to come out or scared to be themselves to be able to look at me and say "well, he's a metalhead and he's openly gay and he's accepted by the bands we love, I guess its okay"....I want to know when its my turn to meet up with my friends Dime, Peter, Andy and Steve on the other side that I've made a difference here on Earth and influenced people to just be themselves and be kind to others. We're all different which makes us the same.