Hi — I’m Jyoti B.Fly (Jyoti Jani Patel). I’m the co-host for Wo’Pop, a community builder, and a mother. I’m also a speaker, coach, facilitator, and writer. I am passionate about weaving the arts into our workplaces and communities, and supporting underrepresented leaders.
Born in London, I had a range of influences from an early age. My parents loved classical Indian and Bollywood music. For years I spent every weekend at an Indian arts school, learning Carnatic music and South Indian dance. My passions included R&B, hip-hop, and pop music from Europe and America. I used to record music videos onto a VHS tape for sing and dance-alongs with my siblings. My young heart adored and appreciated live music in my home city including symphonies and touring world artists, which I was privileged to experience.
As a teenager, I began attending warehouse parties and clubs in London, experiencing UK house, garage, and jungle which blasted open my musical worldview, and provided a haven where I could explore music on my own terms.
When I moved to Florida in 1999 to study engineering, I fell in love with a DJ and deepened my dance music knowledge from both sides of the pond. I also grew to appreciate Latin-American and reggae music. Seattle became my home in 2005 when I got a day job at Boeing and I started DJing on vinyl at clubs and parties. I played breakbeats, which has hip-hop roots and branches across the electronic spectrum. As a resident for C89.5FM and some local crews, I played out a lot.
In 2012, I DJ’ed my first house set at a party I threw next to the Space Needle on New Year’s Eve. I was four-months pregnant and battling chronic pain. After that, my management job, health challenges, and two children absorbed my energy. I eventually reached a low point, completely burned out.
In 2018, I quit my corporate career to focus on my health and start my own facilitation practice, beginning a phase of intense personal growth that improved my life and reconnected me to my well-being and creativity. During the pandemic, I livestreamed a variety show with my partner and children, built community for women in music, and began creating content as a thought leader in systems change and emotional intelligence.
When George Floyd was murdered, I deeply reflected on the colonial threads in my family history, including a violent expulsion from East Africa, and realized my worldviews were shaped through a dominant lens. When my friend Black Velveteen asked me to share a mix for her radio show, I mixed a world house set - intentional about amplifying underrepresented artists for the first time.
World music helped me feel solid in the art I was sharing. I joined the crew, Caravan, to host events that connect people across cultures, and I started DJing regularly again, but with a new focus on diverse global sounds.
My current musical inspirations are ever-growing as I weave my electronic, classical, hip-hop, pop, jazz, and funk threads into a tapestry that invites my listeners to think differently about how they relate to cultures through music. I love learning what world music means to different people and supporting boundary-breaking artists. You can follow me on Insta @jyotibfly, and email me your world music recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org.