Tribal Member small business spotlight: Eddie Box Jr.

Emcee Eddie Box Jr. smiles as he introduces the floats rolling through the streets of Ignacio during the 94th Annual Southern Ute Tribal Fair Parade in 2014.
Emcee of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe’s 2014 Employee Appreciation Day opening ceremonies, Eddie Box Jr., explains the different dance styles of the dancers.
Damon Toledo | SU Drum archive
Robert L. Ortiz | SU Drum archive

What is your name and who are your parents? 

My name is Edward Burch Box Jr. and my wife is Betty Box.  My Parents are Edward Bent Box Sr., (Red Ute) my Mother is Dorothy Burch Box (Blue Mist Women). 

What is your small business (name, services, industry)? 

SandMan/HummingBird Mobile Entertainment. We offer DJ Services and Sound ReinforcementWe are in the music industry. 

What inspired you to start your own small business? 

My Father Edward Bent Box Sr. had a band during the 1950s.  They were called “The Pine River Boys.  Music became my interest in my life. During my Junior High years, my folks took me to Durango for piano lessons.  I then started my own band, we were called “The Century Men.”  The band started in 1965, we played in Albuquerque, New Mexico at the State Fair at Indian Village. We performed at New Year’s night at Fort DuchesneUtah and we played many times in Silverton, Colo We played in Durango and local areas.  In 1969 we went our separate ways; we enjoyed many great moments playing together. 

In 1978 I decided to start a mobile DJ Company.   Out first set up was two record playerstwo guitar amplifiers, and RadioShack Mixer.  We enjoyed music and playing for people.  We have done many events including DJ dances, prom, weddings and background music.   

We are now completely digital.  We now use Virtual DJ, and RekordBox Software.  Two laptops hooked to Pioneer Controllers. JBL Pro Speakers, and Mobile DJ lights. 

We had to become anopen-format DJ who is someone who plays a mix of many genres, rather than just one single genre like oldies, hip hop, western, top 40, trance. 

What have been some of the challenges you’ve encountered in building your business? 

We started to do sound reinforcement for bands and events.  At this time we were using consumer speakers (Peavey).  Any Band that was to perform for the Sky Ute Casino would send a sound Rider to the Casino.  This Rider will tell the Casino, what equipment they would need for their performance.  The big bands wanted professional speakers and not consumer speakers, such as Peavey speakers.  We had to upgrade our speakers we were using and invest in professional speakers.  We chose to invest in EAW speakers and we spent some pretty good cash for the upgrade.   

We then did sound reinforcement for Vincent Craig, LiteFoot, Red Bone, Drew LaCapa, Robert Tree Cody, Paul Rodriguez, and Native American Music Festival at Sky Ute Casino feat. Native Roots, Crystal Phoenix, Shadowyze, Concert for Al Hurricane in Sky Ute Casino Pavilion, Rolling Deep Low-rider show at the Sky Ute Casino, low-rider show in Alamosa, Colorado, Pro Boxing events at the Sky Ute Casino, outdoor concert for Cinco de Mayo in Santa Rita Park in Durango (with several Mexican Entertainers), Southern Ute Fair and Powwow, veteran’s walk event, La Plata County Talent show.  We were also being asked to provide sound reinforcement for the Ute Mountain Casino’s annual powwow.   

What is your vision for your business (how would you like to see it grow)? 

We would like to continue to provide a good product for our customers.  To invest in the proper equipment to make this happen. 

What support would you like to see offered by the Tribe to its small business owners or prospective entrepreneurs? 

To provide funds for start up and provide training to carry on the business. 

What short advice could you provide to an aspiring tribal entrepreneur? 

Have a dream of what you want to be in your future, learn all the  Pro’s and Con’s to fulfill those dreams.  Learn that — you have to put the effort in it!  And it takes TIME. 

How can tribal members and members of the community support your small business? 

By using SandMan/HummingBird MobileEntertainment our website is: SandManHummingBird.com

 

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