Humans of Khmer America

Nate McMilli

My name is Nate McMilli. I’m a PYT, a pretty young thug. I’m a second generation Cambodian, so I keep it real with them and follow all the homies and cousins in California and the Bay Area. The Khmer culture keeps me swaggy 24/7 all day.

I am a DJ and producer in Seattle. I began my career as a musician and played at Warped Tour and other Seattle events. Then I started producing and DJing cuts along with my own music.

Besides music, I work as a manager for the Boys & Girls Club. I graduated from Western Washington University with a degree in Women’s Studies and South East Asian Studies. With an extensive background in social work, I am thinking about pursuing a bachelors program in Project Management. I get high off of making music and doing good.

My Khmer heritage is extremely important to me. I speak Khmer and I am going to teach it to my kids. I have been to Cambodia twice. My dad was born in Battambong so it was really nice to see culturally, where I am from. I saw all the temples and important landmarks.

I think it is important to pay respects to elders and pay homage to Khmer culture because you come from it and our people come from a struggle.

My parents suffered a lot from the Khmer Rouge and we lost 3 uncles, that I’ve never met before, when they were babies. My father was in concentration camps. He still has a bullet scar wound. I really respect him, he’s given me a lot in terms of education and mobility. I really have just been working hard for that. I really respect and thank my parents and heritage and extended family for getting me where I am today.

Check me out DJing at Night Shift and other events around Capitol Hill. Be on the lookout for a new electronic R&B project with my homegirl Emmy Star who works with Jermaine Dupree.

Interview by Lauren Imbrock

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