DIRECTOR'S BIO


DJ BONDS - Serving youth to seek higher education and self-empowerment is what drives Alemayehu Bonds, also known as DJ Bonds. His career in education began in 1996, teaching and tutoring at-risk and incarcerated youth in probation programs and juvenile hall in Los Angeles County. In partnership with the Heroes of Life organization, Bonds developed a curriculum to teach Hip Hop/turntable arts as a creative outlet, and was implemented in Compton, Long Beach, Palmdale and Van Nuys. With Hip Hop as his passion, Bonds became an accomplished event producer in Los Angeles, founding Elements Entertainment in 1998, whose flagship program, Club Elements was the venerable weekly Hip Hop space that honored the “elements” of Hip Hop, and all Hip Hop artists, from unknown to nationally acclaimed – made a pilgrimage to when in Los Angeles. Under the Elements brand, Bonds also produced major concerts with up to 10,000 in attendance. While pursuing his Masters Degree in Management at the University of Redlands, which he completed in 2014, the idea of bringing together his passion for education and Hip Hop culture in the tangible form of a documentary film was born. As a young Ethiopian/African American man who grew up in the working-class neighborhood of Panorama City, Bonds credits Hip Hop for keeping him on the right path in life, and at times, sparing him from becoming another statistic. Where We're From - The Elements Documentary is one way he intends to leave a legacy and share the world and culture that shaped him and his generation with generations to come.