First, and foremost, our hearts go out to those who were lost in the Oakland warehouse party fire, and their families and friends who will be dealing with this loss, for a long time to come.
In this episode, we continue with last week’s topic, offering some tips for new DJ’s (and reminders to the veterans).
Tip 8: For digital DJ’s: Make sure you settle on the platform BEFORE you choose the hardware. While some devices and software are mappable, they are becoming more and more locked in to each other, and sometimes mapped features don’t always work correctly (or at all, at times). So, it’s important to know which software platform you are more comfortable with before spending a bunch of money on hardware that you may end up changing or upgrading, down the road.
Tip 9: Hone those core skills. A lot of new DJs like to rush to get on a stage or in a booth, and as a result, many do so LONG before they are ready. By staying patient, and making sure your skills are on par with the openers you see at your local clubs and shows, you ensure you’re putting your best face out there for all to see.
Tip 10: On the flip side of tip 9…Be Realistic & Fail Often. Take risks. You won’t get ahead, if you don’t give it a shot. But, know that things will happen and when they do, do your best to be graceful to recover from it.
Tip 11: Brand Awareness…you are building your brand from the moment you establish yourself as a DJ. So, be sure you are always self-aware and be careful of how you handle conflict, customers, promoters, and requests, especially when it’s in the public eye.
Tip 12: Continuous Education…NEVER STOP LEARNING! The moment you become complacent and stop pushing yourself, that’s the beginning of the end. While it’s important to be as proficient as possible with your core skills, we only get better by learning new stuff and applying it to our specific work flow. There’s lots of resources now, more than ever before!
Tip 13: Learn restraint. This is a BIG one, for new jacks and old schoolers, alike. It’s hard to not play all of your biggest tunes before it’s time, but for those that can practice that patience, and drop the right tracks at the right time, it can be the difference between a good set with great tracks and a phenomenal, life changing set.
Tip 14: In the same vein of Brand Awareness, but kind of in its own context, professionalism is key, if you really want this to be a business, or your career. Don’t be a diva. Stay humble. We’re all in this, together.
Tip 15: Don’t scratch melodies over melodies, lyrics over lyrics, and learn proper phrasing and measures.
Tip 16: STOP USING AIR HORNS IN YOUR MIXES!
Tip 17: Know your limits and deliver what you can provide. Don’t over promise and under deliver. The stigma from that will follow you for the rest of your career.