The Ultimate Goal: Harmonious Living

For DJ Whutever, having access to great health coverage is music to his ears.

 

Cornell Yarbrough fell in love with music long before he started thinking about career options—and way before New Yorkers would know him as DJ Whutever.

His passion for bringing people together through music, his love for the Bronx, and his mission to inspire others drive him to use his platform for good. Whether it’s to show youth and people with disabilities what’s possible through music, or sharing the importance of good physical and mental health, he’s doing whutever it takes to live by example.

While music was always a source of inspiration and motivation, it wasn’t until a few years ago that he realized how important it was to focus on his health. A medical emergency that landed him in the hospital was a reality check that confirmed he needed to take better care of himself. He credits his membership with MetroPlusHealth in helping him maintain his health goals. He also serves as an ambassador to encourage other New Yorkers to get insured and make better health choices. Here’s his story.

 

Two turntables and a dream

DJ Whutever grew up in the South Bronx as hip-hop was emerging. He was always surrounded by music—in his home, as well as out in the neighborhood.

“A lot of the memories I have of growing up were of hearing all kinds of music, and even with my family being from the Caribbean, hearing Caribbean music,” he recalls. “It’s rooted in me.”

He was around 12 when he saw a friend DJing and was so awestruck, he asked his mother forhis first set of turntables. They got them from a record store in Brooklyn, cueing him up for his future.

“No one taught me how to DJ. I just fell in love with manipulating the sound,” he says. “I really loved just playing the songs … and seeing people have fun.”

He started DJing in high school and then college, where he landed an internship at iHeart Radio, Power 105.1. The internship ended when he graduated from college and DJ Whutever had one goal: return to radio. He sent emails and made phone calls weekly, inquiring about opportunities. His persistence paid off when he was hired seven months later for the street team at Power 105.1.
He started as part of the crew that hands out giveaways and helps set up and break down for DJs at events. From there, he worked his way up.

My story of getting into radio is all about perseverance. If you have a dream, you have to go after it. You can’t wait for opportunities; you have to create them.

“My story of getting into radio is all about perseverance,” he says. “I tell everybody, including the kids I speak to, if you have a dream, you have to go after it. You can’t wait for opportunities; you have to create them.”

His mom saved his life

DJ Whutever says his lifestyle started to take a toll on his physical health. His life changed — and was saved — two years ago while he was visiting his mother. He wasn’t feeling well, so she checked his blood pressure and recommended he go to the emergency room. Once there, it was confirmed his blood pressure was dangerously high. He was immediately admitted to the hospital.

“It was a reality check,” he says. “It was crazy because, you know, at the end of the day, it was something that I caused myself, with my crazy eating and living the DJ life of getting out of the club or radio at 2 or 3 a.m.”

He had just become a MetroPlusHealth member and says his hospitalization and follow-up care were covered and hassle-free. It allowed him to focus on establishing better habits, like eating healthier, going to the gym, and getting regular checkups to monitor his blood pressure.

MetroPlusHealth helped me greatly with getting my first gym membership and being able to see my doctor.

“Once I got out of the hospital, that’s when the real work had to start,” he says.

“MetroPlusHealth helped me greatly with getting my first gym membership and being able to see my doctor.”

 

 

Spreading positivity and healthy living

There’s a part of DJ Whutever’s job that has little to do with music, but it’s where he knows he can make significant impact. As a recognizable public figure, he has the influence to share his knowledge and motivate others.

Whether it’s encouraging youth and people with disabilities to pursue their dreams through his DJ academy or promoting the importance of healthy habits and insurance coverage, he’s driven to use his platform for good.

As a creative professional, he knows the challenges that others like him face when considering health care costs. It’s hard to maintain preventive care if you’re not insured, and many freelancers, contractors, and creative professionals opt to forgo the cost on tight budgets.

“I think it’s very tough for people to get healthcare. Even more importantly than that, I think there’s a lot of people who think the only way go get healthcare is by maybe having a nine-to-five job where the healthcare comes with it,” he says.

Photographers, DJs, and others with nontraditional jobs may be unaware that there’s an affordable option for them. He works to educate them about MetroPlusHealth and shares his story. He tells them they need to think about health care, regardless of their age, even if they aren’t aware of any health problems.

“If you’re busy, you’re hustling, you’re doing stuff, you just think you’ll get to it later. But life catches up with you,” he says.

He emphasizes that health care coverage allows you to identify potential concerns, so he values preventive care like annual checkups. He also values MetroPlusHealth’s range of coverage, which includes vision, dental, and access to specialists.

Being healthy is huge. We want to be here for our kids and our grandkids. That’s why I believe in what MetroPlusHealth is doing to get every New Yorker healthy.

“Being healthy is huge. We want to be here for our kids and our grandkids or even if we don’t have kids, just our family members,” he says. “That’s why I believe in what MetroPlusHealth is doing to get every New Yorker healthy.”

Learn more about the benefits of health coverage with MetroPlusHealth plans.

last updated: December 15, 2023

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