20 most famous DJs even your grandma has probably heard of

20 most famous DJs even your grandma has probably heard of

Since the mid-1900s, DJing has become an integral part of the music industry. Whether on the radio, at social gatherings or big concerts, they keep everybody involved and happy. While there have been numerous DJs in the world, some are considered the most famous DJs in the world because of their professionalism and ability to handle any audience.

Famous DJs
Tiesto, Annie Mac and Steve Aoki are among the famous DJs worldwide. Photo: @tiesto, @anniemacmanus, @steveaoki on Instagram (modified by author)
Source: UGC

Skilful and famous DJs worldwide continue to get profits with incredible speed. Breathtaking shows, unique sounds and beautiful settings make the crowd explode with joy and pleasure each time. These DJs have built solid fan bases over the years.

Most famous DJs in the world

The best DJs in the world can meet the changing trends and the needs of various audiences. Below are some of the most popular DJs who have mastered their craft and consistently exceeded expectations.

1. David Guetta

Famous DJs
David Guetta attends The BRIT Awards 2023 at The O2 Arena in London, England. Photo: Dave J Hogan
Source: Getty Images

Pierre David Guetta is a French DJ and music producer, born on 7 November 1967 in Paris, France. He began his music career in the 1980s. David was listed on the International ranking of the DJs by the British magazine DJ MAG. Additionally, he was named the Best DJ of the Year and Best DJ Set of the Year for his mix, KissDaFunk, during the House Music Awards.

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2. Paul Oakenfold

Best DJs of all time
Paul Oakenfold during Vivendi Universal Games E3 Kickoff Party at Avalon Hollywood at Avalon Hollywood in Hollywood, California, United States. Photo: Mark Sullivan
Source: Getty Images

Paul Mark Oakenfold was born on 30 August 1963 in Mile End, London, United Kingdom. He is a British trance DJ, producer and remixer. Paul began mixing at the age of 16. He has provided over 100 remixes for over 100 artists, such as Madonna, Britney Spears and The Stone Roses. He has won several awards, such as BMI Awards and two DJ Awards.

3. Carl Cox

Top DJs in the world
DJ Carl Cox plays at the 'House the House' DJ competition grande finale with Last Night A DJ Saved My Life foundation at House of Commons in London, England. Photo: Claire Greenway
Source: Getty Images

Carl Cox is among the best DJs of all time. He was born on 29 July 1962 in Oldham, England. He started DJing at the age of 10, inspired by the music he listened to at home. He began working as a mobile DJ while he was a teenager.

Carl owns the record label Intec Digital, founded around 1998. He also co-founded another record label, Awesome Soundwave, in 2018 that solely focused on live electronic artists.

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4. Steve Aoki

best DJs in the world
DJ Steve Aoki is seen in attendance during Game Five of the 2023 NHL Stanley Cup Final at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Zak Krill
Source: Getty Images

Steven Hiroyuki Aoki is an American electro-house musician, EDM producer, DJ and music executive. He was born on 30 November 1977 in Miami, Florida, United States. Steve began DJing while he was still in college. He came into the limelight in the late 1990s through his record label, Dim Mak Records.

The electronic dance producer is known for his high-energy performances and unique style. He has worked with the biggest names in the music industry, including Lil Wayne and Fall Out Boy.

5. Deadmau5

top DJs of all the time
Joel Thomas Zimmerman, known professionally as Deadmau5, is seen performing onstage during the 2021 Day Of The Deadmau5 at Oasis Wynwood in Miami, Florida. Photo: Jason Koerner
Source: Getty Images

Deadmau5 was born Joel Thomas Zimmerman on 5 January 1981 in Niagara Falls, Canada. Zimmerman founded his record label, Mau5trap Records. He won his first Juno Award for Dance Recording of the Year for All U Ever Want, a collaboration with Billy Newton-Davis in 2008.

6. Tiësto

Most famous DJs
Tiesto attends the Capital Jingle Bell Ball 2022 at The O2 Arena in London, England. Photo: Dave J Hogan
Source: Getty Images

Tiësto's real name is Tijs Mihiel Verwest, and he is a Dutch DJ and record producer. He was born on 17 January 1969. In 1997, Tijs founded the label Black Hole Recordings with Arny Bink. He was crowned the World's No. 1 DJ through 2004. He has won several awards, including three TMF awards, two Dutch DJ awards and an MTV Holland award.

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7. Frankie Knuckles

Famous DJs names
DJ Frankie Knuckles during 2003 Emery Awards - After Party - New York at Capitale in New York City, New York, United States. Photo: Paul Hawthorne
Source: Getty Images

Francis Warren Nicholls Jr., known by his stage name Frankie Knuckles, is an American DJ, record producer and remixer. He was born on 18 January 1955 in The Bronx, New York, US. Frankie died on 31 March 2014 at the age of 59.

He is still considered one of the first DJs to sign to a major label, Virgin Records. In 1997, he won a Grammy Award for Remixer of the Year. He has worked with superstars including Janet Jackson, Diana Ross, Chaka Khan, En Vogue, Michael Jackson and Luther Vandross.

8. Diplo

Greatest DJs of all time
Diplo attends Storytellers during the 2023 Tribeca Festival at Spring Studios in New York City. Photo: Jason Mendez
Source: Getty Images

Diplo was born Thomas Wesley Pentz Jr. on 10 November 1978 in Tupelo, Mississippi, US. He began his career as a DJ at the age of 23 after working various jobs, such as a school teacher and social worker. He was one of the initial members of the Mad Decent crew and collaborated with artists like Justin Bieber, Usher, and Snoop Dogg. Diplo owns a record label called Harlem Shake.

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9. Grandmaster Flash

Most popular DJs
Grandmaster Flash at the UnitedMasters Celebration of Independence held at Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Gilbert Flores
Source: Getty Images

Joseph Robert Saddler, known by his stage name Grandmaster Flash, is a Barbadian DJ and producer. He was born on 1 January 1958. Grandmaster is one of the originators of hip-hop. He was the first DJ to play the turntables as a musical instrument. He invented the Quick Mix Theory, which consisted of double-back, back-door, back-spin and phasing techniques.

10. The Chainsmokers

famous DJs
Alex Pall and Drew Taggart of Chainsmokers attend the 2023 Fanatics Super Bowl Party at Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix, Arizona. Photo: Jesse Grant
Source: Getty Images

The Chainsmokers are among the top DJs of all time. They are an American electronic DJ and producer duo comprising of Alexander 'Alex' Pall and Andrew 'Drew' Taggart. Andrew was born on 31 December 1989, and Alex Paul was born on 16 May 1985.

Their breakthrough came in 2014 after the release of their hit song, Selfie. They are known for mixing indie, dance and pop into a chart-topping sound.

11. Annie Mac

Famous DJ names
Annie Mac attends the Stine Goya store opening event in London, England. Photo: David M. Benett
Source: Getty Images

Annie Macmanus is an Irish DJ, broadcaster and writer. She is one of the top female DJs in the world, born on 18 July 1978 in Dublin, Ireland. Before she became a DJ, she worked for Steve Lamaq, a professional journalist, Colin Murray and Zane Lowe.

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She is well recognised for her Radio 1 show, The Annie Macs MASH UP, where she broadcasts 2 hours of dance music worldwide every Friday Night. Annie was awarded the best female presenter at the Drum and Bass Awards in 2009.

12. Timmy Trumpet

Famous DJs
Timmy Trumpet performs to an audience on the location of zero and globally via the internet with a live stream at the Sydney Cricket Ground in Sydney, Australia. Photo James D. Morgan
Source: Getty Images

Timmy Trumpet was born Timothy Jude Smith on 9 June 1981 in Sydney, Australia. He is a singer, songwriter, record producer, DJ and instrumentalist known for combining his trumpet and dance music skills. He began playing trumpet at age four and attended the Sydney Conservatorium of Music.

13. Armin van Buuren

Best DJs of all time
Armin van Buuren visits SiriusXM Studio in New York City. Photo: Santiago Felipe
Source: Getty Images

Armin Jozef Jacobus Daniel van Buuren was born on 25 December 1976 in Leiden, Netherlands. Armin has had a passion for music since an early age, inspired by his father, an avid record player. His mixes are a blend of progressive house and club jams.

14. Daft Punk

Top DJs in the world
Musicians Thomas Bangalter (L) and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo of Daft Punk attend the 56th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. Photo: Michael Kovac
Source: Getty Images

Daft Punk is a two-person French electronic music team formed in 1993 by Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo in Paris. The two met in 1987, attending Lycee Carnot, a secondary school in Paris, France. They were known for always hiding their faces with helmets. The group split in 2021.

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Guy-Manuel was born in 1974 in the suburbs of Paris, France, and Thomas was born in 1975 in Paris, France. In 1995, Daft Punk reached the top 10 on pop charts in both the UK and France and #1 on the dance chart.

15. Andy C

most famous DJs
Andy C poses with his Best DJ Award at the Drum&BassArena Awards 2010 at Clapham Grand in London, England. Photo: Marc Broussely
Source: Getty Images

Andy C is a British DJ and record producer. His real name is Andrew John Clarke, born on 7 April 1976 in Walsall, UK. He co-founded the record label RAM Records, which consists of DJs and producers like Simon, Red One, Moving Fusion and DJ Fresh. Andy is known for his drum and bass, jungle music, dance, hip-hop and rock mixing style.

16. Fatboy Slim

best DJs in the world
Fatboy Slim performs during the 2023 Wilderness Festival at Cornbury Park in Charlbury, Oxfordshire. Photo: Jim Dyson
Source: Getty Images

Fatboy Slim is an English DJ, musician and record producer born on 31 July 1963. His real name is Norman Quentin Cook. Fatboy pioneered the big beat genre that gained popularity in the 1990s. His hit tracks include Weapon of Choice, Praise You and Right Here, Right Now.

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17. Benny Benassi

top DJs in the world
Benny Benassi attends the red carpet of the movie "Benny Benassi - Equilibrio" during the 16th Rome Film Fest 2021 in Rome, Italy. Photo: Vittorio Zunino Celotto
Source: Getty Images

Marco 'Benny' Benassi was born on 13 July 1967 in Milan, Italy. He is an Italian DJ, record producer, and remixer. His first international hit was I Feel So Fine, released as KMC with vocals by Dhany in 2001. He is also known for the hit song Satisfaction. Benny has collaborated with notable artists such as Chris Brown, John Legend, Kelis, Savage Garden and Public Enemy.

18. John Digweed

top DJs of all the time
DJ John Digweed performs during the BPM 2016 at Blue Parrot in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. Photo: Victor Chavez
Source: Getty Images

Thomas John Digweed was born on 1 January 1967 in Hastings, UK. Thomas began DJing at the age of 13. The first song he produced was For What You Dream Of with Nick Muir, a record producer. He founded Bedrock Records and has worked with famous artists such as Guy J, Marco Bailey and Cristoph.

19. DJ Kool Herc

Famous DJ names
DJ Kool Herc attends the Seeger Fest press conference at SEIU 1199 Penthouse in New York City. Photo: Cindy Ord
Source: Getty Images

DJ Kool Herc was born Clive Campbell on 16 April 1955 in Kingston, Jamaica. DJ Kool relocated to New York City, US, at the age of 12. DJ Kool is widely known as the founder of the hip-hop culture. He recently celebrated his 50 years of hip-hop.

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20. Judge Jules

Greatest DJs of all time
Judge Jules during Judge Jules Portrait Session At 2005 Winter Music Conference at Miami Beach in Miami, United States. Photo: C Flanigan
Source: Getty Images

Julius O'Riordan, known by his stage name Judge Jules, is one of the greatest DJs of all time. He was born on 26 October 1966 in North London, England, UK. Judge is a dance music DJ, record producer and entertainment lawyer. He started radio DJing in 1987. Jules has won several awards, such as Muzik Awards for the Best DJ and Dancerstar for the Best International DJ.

The most famous DJs have played a significant role in defining the genre of music. They have highly organised music libraries they can access easily. Millions of people rely on them to discover new and exciting sounds.

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Authors:
Isaac Wangethi avatar

Isaac Wangethi (Lifestyle writer) Isaac Wangethi has been a content writer at Legit since September 2021. He has gained valuable experience working on various projects, such as celebrity biographies, lifestyle, news and many more. Isaac won the Writer of the Year Award on Legit in 2023. He earned a Bsc. of Science in Information Technology in 2017 from the University of Nairobi and a Higher Diploma in Computer Software Engineering from Gretsa University in 2021. In 2023, Isaac finished the AFP course on Digital Investigation Techniques. In March 2024, he completed the Google News Initiative course. Email: Wangethin@gmail.com

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