#1
I was curious if there are any dj's on ug and how do you get started and maybe they could share their experiences djing.
#3
I too would like to hear from any DJ's on UG

Unfortunately I think everyone on here is into either teh brootalz or teh s0ulz
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#4
Divided is into Djing. You can probably find him in the electronica thread in the other artists forum.
#5
i'm a girl haha but good job suggesting me

yes, i'm learning to mix at the moment. what did you want to know? it's hard to know where to begin!
from daylight...
...into darkness
#6
SLIPKNOT
And would this really go in bandleading
Quote by craig-sansum
+10000000000000000000000000000000000

Quote by Sanitarium91
Liking the cosmic toad vocals is a sign of exquisite taste, so good on you!
#7
Quote by divid3d
yes, i'm learning to mix at the moment. what did you want to know? it's hard to know where to begin!
What's the basic equipment you need and what was your first Dj'ing gig like?
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#8
i kind of have a list they kind of relate to DJing and making the beats, feel free to answer which ones you can as you said you were learning to mix.

what program do are you using to record, also do you make your own beats? (as i am currently using sonar home studio 7)

do you use midi? keyboard/synth?

do you have a setlist you use for refrence?

opinion on dj in a box or just these setups that contain mixer and wheels combined if you know what im talking about instead of buying everything seperately?

opinion on on some artist trying to give their live shows more of a band experience, do you feel its neccesary? ( im refering to bands like crystal castles and heartsrevolution who brought in drummers to make it more of a band than guy on keyboard, girl singing)

do you think a dj having the ability to scratch is important or do you find the ability to mix just as important for certain styles such as trance?

if you were to play at venue they probably would supply the p.a. but what is the probability they would have lights, also do you feel strobes lights and such improve the experience of the show?

as you said you were learning to mix so that mean you are using a program ( i can't remeber the name of it) to spin records and just hooking the mixer to the computer and doing it that way?

and do you choose to go by a stage name?
Last edited by Raging Bull at Jul 25, 2009,
#9
ok here we go. feel free to ask for further info if anything i've said doesn't make sense to you.

Quote by Nietsche
What's the basic equipment you need and what was your first Dj'ing gig like?

for DJing you need:

- a dj mixer. these usually have 2, 3 or 4 channels depending on how many turntables/cd units you're going to be using. many mixers will have effects built in but this is not necessary, just a bonus. for example:

http://www.techmarket.gr/eshop/images/djm600.jpg

- turntables or cdj's. it doesn't really matter which you use (vinyl or cds), but it really just depends what sort of music you are playing, as some genres releases are mostly on vinyl and some genres releases are mostly digital, and whether you want to scratch or not. i have 2 turntables, and i plan to add at least one cdj to my setup so i can play the tracks that i like which are not released on vinyl. no matter which you use, it must have a pitch control. cd players for djing have a platter that can be manipulated in the same sort of way one would manipulate a record on a turntable.

examples of each:

turntables:
http://www.artsound.gr/catalog/images/stanton/stantonst150.jpg
http://mikkezavala.com/blog/muzik/technics_1200mk5k.jpg

cdjs:
http://djhit.files.wordpress.com/2007/12/cdj-400_thumb.jpg
http://www.skratchworx.com/images/Pioneer/cdj1000mk3/CDJ-1000MK3_top.jpg

- headphones. these need to be proper djing headphones with good sound quality. example:

http://www.getinthemix.co.uk/images/uploaded/hd25.jpg

- monitors (speakers). what sort of monitors are best (and what quality you need) depends on several factors. an example:

http://www.idjnow.com/ProductImagesLarge/BX5ADELUXE.jpg

- tunes. either vinyl or mp3/wav. always buy your music legitimately, using warez is highly frowned upon (and you'll notice the crappy sound quality too).

i haven't had any gigs yet - i've only been mixing myself for a couple of months. i won't be ready for a gig for a while yet haha, lots more practice is required

Quote by Raging Bull
i kind of have a list they kind of relate to DJing and making the beats, feel free to answer which ones you can as you said you were learning to mix.

what program do are you using to record, also do you make your own beats? (as i am currently using sonar home studio 7)

do you use midi? keyboard/synth?

do you have a setlist you use for refrence?

opinion on dj in a box or just these setups that contain mixer and wheels combined if you know what im talking about instead of buying everything seperately?

opinion on on some artist trying to give their live shows more of a band experience, do you feel its neccesary? ( im refering to bands like crystal castles and heartsrevolution who brought in drummers to make it more of a band than guy on keyboard, girl singing)

do you think a dj having the ability to scratch is important or do you find the ability to mix just as important for certain styles such as trance?

if you were to play at venue they probably would supply the p.a. but what is the probability they would have lights, also do you feel strobes lights and such improve the experience of the show?

as you said you were learning to mix so that mean you are using a program ( i can't remeber the name of it) to spin records and just hooking the mixer to the computer and doing it that way?

and do you choose to go by a stage name?

"making the beats" isn't DJing, it's producing. producers make the tracks, and then either play them themselves live (off a computer, making edits on the fly, etc), or DJs play them from vinyl or cd.

i haven't started recording my mixes yet, though i plan to start doing that soon when i go buy a long enough RCA cable hahha. i'll be using audacity to record them.

as i am a beginner, it makes sense to plan and practice sets in advance. i've been pondering ideas for a mix that i could record as a demo, so whenever i get an idea for it, i'll go and attempt to mix those tracks and see how it sounds. the overall flow of a mix is important too (track order) so that's something that is wise to think about in advance if you're new to it. most djs will soon get to a point where they don't need to plan setlists in advance and can just 'wing it' and it will work though.

dj in a box setups - i think they are pretty pointless if you're quite sure you want to get into mixing as a hobby and stick with it. you'll grow out of them very fast and have to upgrade your gear, costing you more. just my opinion though.

next question.. i'm not sure what a guy on a keyboard, a girl singing and a drummer has to do with djing? i don't know crystal castles or heartrevolution so i can't comment on them.

scratching works perfectly with some genres, and doesn't really work with others. scratching ability should always be secondary to the basic skills of beatmatching, programming a set, mixing in phrase, etc. i appreciate good scratching when it is used to enhance an already good set, but if you can only scratch wickedly and can't even mix cleanly then your set just isn't going to be very pleasant to listen to imo.

the equipment supplied at a venue varies a lot, but unless you're playing at a poorly organised makeshift warehouse party then you can generally expect a club to supply everything you need besides headphones and tunes. mobile djs (the sort that play at weddings and such) will supply their own lighting and gear, but proper club/event djs do not need to do this. i definitely think lighting (strobes, lasers etc) add to a show, it's all part of the atmosphere.

i'm learning to mix (beatmatch and overlay tracks on one another to create a seamless transition) using 2 stanton st.150 turntables with ortofon om night club e needles, a behringer djx700 mixer (borrowed from a friend, i'm buying a better mixer for myself soon), sennheiser hd25 headphones and m-audio bx5a monitors. no computer is currently involved. all i'll be using a computer for is to record demos.

yes i've chosen a dj name that i will use when i start recording mixes, and if i ever try to get gigs in the future. plenty of people just use their actual name, and that's fine, but i choose to use an alias for many reasons.
from daylight...
...into darkness
#10
so when you develope a setlist do most dj's mix it down and record it in advance, and make so its one long song and play that so they don't have to do it live.

also is it really a touchy subject from using a song gathered illegaly from one purchased, im not trying to sound insensitive im just curious
Last edited by Raging Bull at Jul 27, 2009,
#11
Quote by Raging Bull
so when you develope a setlist do most dj's mix it down and record it in advance, and make so its one long song and play that so they don't have to do it live.

no definitely not. when a dj is starting out it is common to practice a set in advance so they are comfortable with the tracks they want to play and can figure out the best ways to combine them. they may also record their practice sessions in order for them to listen to it and see how each mix went and what improvements they could make/how they could do things differently next time. but they would never just get up on stage and play a pre-recorded set.
also is it really a touchy subject from using a song gathered illegaly from one purchased, im not trying to sound insensitive im just curious

yes it is. people who play warez or promos that they have ripped out of someone else's set (ie. anything that you did not purchase legally or that the producer sent you a copy of with permission to play it) are hacks. it's important to support the artists and labels that release the music that allows you to pursue your hobby/job of djing.
from daylight...
...into darkness
#12
Just put on some prerecorded beat stuff that you can make with that ****ty e-JAY programme that came free with Kellog's cereal awhilwe back then jump up on stage, whip ya dick out and p!ss all over everyone
it goes down good in the clubs where DJs usually play because the people there are either smacked up on drugs or diabetic alcoholics
Quote by AlanHB
Yeah well in special UG land chords = noob, scales = intermediate and modes = advanced. Most users are trying to finish the game on hard because then you get the trophies for noob and intermediate difficulties upon completion anyway.
#13
@divid3d: Thanks I reallly appreciate it

@Solid S/hit: Please if you have nothing good to say get back in the pit
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#14
Quote by Solid S/hit
Just put on some prerecorded beat stuff that you can make with that ****ty e-JAY programme that came free with Kellog's cereal awhilwe back then jump up on stage, whip ya dick out and p!ss all over everyone
it goes down good in the clubs where DJs usually play because the people there are either smacked up on drugs or diabetic alcoholics


Have you ever been to a club?

And also the only thing I can really recommend is to practice. and just because you've got some prior knowledge of music it doesn't mean you get a head start. I say this because I've seen enough awful sets from moderately famous guitarists and band members as "guest DJ's".
#15
how much should i save up for a good beginner setup thats less than a grand, or you can just recomend me a good setup in general just for playing things like house parties so hopefully i can raise enough money to buy a better setup when i become more experienced.
#16
Quote by Raging Bull
how much should i save up for a good beginner setup thats less than a grand, or you can just recomend me a good setup in general just for playing things like house parties so hopefully i can raise enough money to buy a better setup when i become more experienced.

what sort of music do you want to play? and out of interest, why are you interested in DJing?

$1000 US is only $1220 AU... that's not much money for gear at all unfortunately. for that sort of money you may just have to get one of those 'instant dj' packs... which are about as good quality and will last you as long as an 'instant guitarist' pack haha. also keep in mind, those packs don't usually contain everything you need (they might just have a mixer + decks, or mixer + decks + headphones - you'd still need to get monitors and tunes which can both be quite expensive).
from daylight...
...into darkness
#17
im getting into edm and im leaning towards trance. i like the melodys and the synth it contains and its very powerful music, for me atleast it is. if i had to describe for me, trance just gives off this good vibe and not to sound weird but epic sound, you could have a piano playing then suddenly the this pulsating synth kicks at 140 bpm and carries the song and then you have a bassy drum going off in the background adding to the intensity. i started listening to daft punk which was kind of my gateway, discovery is one of my favorite albums ever, and it just took off from there i started listening to justice, scooter, basshunter, and whatever else i could find, but i've been looking up these dream trance videos on youtube and that is the music i would like to make and play as a dj.

i had always considered getting into djing but never knew were to start. i graduated highschool a couple months ago and for my graduation present my parents bought me a r3 korg synth which i have been using, i'm still experimenting with it but can make the sounds i was hoping to achieve, i just need to record somethings and get a proper setup and i would be on my way.

i don't have that much money, i was looking into the gemini cdm-3600 which is only 250 usd, it has cd ports and i think you can plug a ipod into it also, and i think if you wanted to also has jacks to plug in other turntables. the only problem though is that people were commenting on how some of theirs were malfuctioning and would start skipping or something bad was happening to one of the sides but the other fucntioned properly, others were saying that it was the post offices fault for breaking it as it has to be shipped. it would probably make a good setup for me start on as long it doesn't malfuction.

can you explain the monitors, do you mean a p.a. system/amp or like those small monitors, because if it is those the small monitors are they really necessary i don't get, i've been to guitarcenter and seen the recording room and how they have these little monitors but never understand what they were really for like .do use them to pratice because they haver good sound quality or something else, because it doesn't seem you could get a loud sound out of them being how small they are. also im not that worried about getting the music, i'll get off itunes or something. i plan on playing house parties by the way till i can get better gear maybe buy my own p.a. or borrow one from a friend.

i have a friend who might be intrested and i was thinking i could form a duo like justice, 2many djs's or mstrkrft, does that way we may be able to afford better gear. what do you think of this idea of being a 2 dj man group instead of being solo.
#18
There has been a lot of good adivce here. I do not dj(I do produce though), but I'm friends with some pretty big DJs in the Chicago club scene, and I really reccommend going to clubs, if you are near a city or any, and really listen to and watch what the DJ is doing. Also, talk to them if you get a chance and ask questions. People at these places are generally very nice people and love to help, ecstacy makes great people haha.

Also, here are some interesting artists to check out that are great at their craft:
Bassnectar (he was sick live!! one of the best shows i've ever seen)
Paul Van Dyke
Infected Mushroom (in my top three shows ever)
Armin Van Buuren
1200 Micrograms
Shpongle
Astrix
Eliot Lipp
Sub-ID
STS9 (a band and not dj, but interesting take on electronic & jazz music)
Ronald Jenkees (similar to STS9, youtube him)
EOTO
Lotus
Vibesquad
Disco Biscuits

and here's some chicago dj's to check out for more of a club oriented sound:
DJ Inphinity
Bad Boy Bill
DJ Rozz
Mixin Marc
Alex Peace
Shaman Koz
DJ Magix
DJ Markski
James Alexander
Ryan B
DJ Bizerk
DJ Caffeine
DJ Flix
DJ Bang It
DJ Vetal
DJ Phanta C
#19
thanks for the advice so far guys.

ramblin what kind of advice could you give me on producing, i want to be able to produce my own music as well as dj. how do you distribute your music? what program do you use? do you focus on midi or do you go out and buy synths or a mixture? also i was curious is if there was sites were i could get samples for the kind of music i wanted to do or do i have to find someone who would be intrested in singing and adjust their voice to fit the song?

by the way im 17 so its hard for me to get out and talk to dj's.
#20
I'm only 19, so the clubs I went(I haven't been in like a year) were for ages 17-24 so look around you might find one. Also, I am new to producing so I don't have a whole lot of knowledge. I use Fruity Loops right now as my program to do this. I have found quite a few good sound clips online for free. I would just google what I wanted and eventually find the sound I'm looking for. Also, I am trying to figure out sampling, and have a midi controller coming so I will be learning that soon. I have around 15k songs on my itunes so when i sample I usually am inspired by somethin I listen to so I take the song chop out the part I want and then bring it in to the program.

I'm sorry I don't really have a whole lot more information on production, I am still trying to learn myself. And as far as distrubtion goes, I know quite a few people that are going to college for music and gaining connections and breaking into the industry, so once I have my first cd done I plan on seeing what my friends can do for me first.
#21
Quote by Raging Bull
im getting into edm and im leaning towards trance. i like the melodys and the synth it contains and its very powerful music, for me atleast it is. if i had to describe for me, trance just gives off this good vibe and not to sound weird but epic sound, you could have a piano playing then suddenly the this pulsating synth kicks at 140 bpm and carries the song and then you have a bassy drum going off in the background adding to the intensity. i started listening to daft punk which was kind of my gateway, discovery is one of my favorite albums ever, and it just took off from there i started listening to justice, scooter, basshunter, and whatever else i could find, but i've been looking up these dream trance videos on youtube and that is the music i would like to make and play as a dj.

none of those artists you listed are trance artists

i don't have that much money, i was looking into the gemini cdm-3600 which is only 250 usd, it has cd ports and i think you can plug a ipod into it also, and i think if you wanted to also has jacks to plug in other turntables. the only problem though is that people were commenting on how some of theirs were malfuctioning and would start skipping or something bad was happening to one of the sides but the other fucntioned properly, others were saying that it was the post offices fault for breaking it as it has to be shipped. it would probably make a good setup for me start on as long it doesn't malfuction.

hmm personally i don't like the idea of an "all in one" system. if something breaks or you want to upgrade, you're basically scrapping it all and starting from scratch. there are cheap mixer and cdj options out there. also i've heard pretty bad things about gemini products in general (bad quality, lots of things go wrong very quickly).

for mixers try these brands: numark, reloop, vestax.
for cd units try these brands: denon, numark, stanton, reloop.

see if any of them have units within your price range. i recommend staying away from behringer mixers, too many horror stories haha.

can you explain the monitors, do you mean a p.a. system/amp or like those small monitors, because if it is those the small monitors are they really necessary i don't get, i've been to guitarcenter and seen the recording room and how they have these little monitors but never understand what they were really for like .do use them to pratice because they haver good sound quality or something else, because it doesn't seem you could get a loud sound out of them being how small they are.

by monitors i mean a pair of powered speakers. they come in various sizes. the idea is that you want something with good sound quality (clear and crisp), particularly if you're going to be using the monitors for beatmatching (one ear in the headphones and one ear listening to the speakers), but it's still important that they are good quality even if you beatmatch in your headphones, because when you go to bring the cued track in, you use the speakers to hear what is happening, not your headphones. if you can't hear clearly you won't know if the tracks are in time or if it sounds good, and when you mix on a proper sound system all of a sudden all of your mistakes (that you couldn't hear) will be very obvious to everyone.

if you can't afford decent monitors initially then that's ok, many people don't factor their cost into the equation and start off using computer speakers haha. but i'd recommend upgrading to something decent whenever it is possible. brands to look for in terms of monitors: samson, KRK, m-audio, behringer.

btw the best way to choose monitors is to take a cd into the store with a track you know inside out, and listen to it on the monitors you're planning to buy so you can judge if it sounds right or not.

also im not that worried about getting the music, i'll get off itunes or something. i plan on playing house parties by the way till i can get better gear maybe buy my own p.a. or borrow one from a friend.

does itunes sell 320kbps mp3s of the artists that you want to play? if not there are plenty of sites out there that might. try:

www.junodownload.com
www.beatport.com
www.trackitdown.net

i have a friend who might be intrested and i was thinking i could form a duo like justice, 2many djs's or mstrkrft, does that way we may be able to afford better gear. what do you think of this idea of being a 2 dj man group instead of being solo.

it sounds like an ok idea down the track but i'm not sure it's the best way to go from the beginning when you're both just starting out and learning. where will the gear be kept? will you both have access to practice with it several times a week? if you're both only getting restricted access to the gear then it's going to take a long time to learn how to mix.
from daylight...
...into darkness
#22
yeah i know none of the stuff i listed is considered trance im not really that picky on what i listen to but its just i i'll listen to something i like and most of the time i don't bother to remember who it was by so i never really have any good examples. im not pretending to know what im talking about i just like what i like which may not actually be considered trance or probably good by others standards but by the way things are spread out and how nit picky people can be it probably spands different genres. from what i know about those artist though off the top of my head, justice is electro house, basshunter is europop and scooter i think is hardstyle/hardcore/rave, i could be wrong though. even if its what i listen to its not neccesarily what i want to play, my taste in music always changes with my mood though.

i was looking into the numark omni for 350 us, they have another version called the stealth which is 100 dollars cheaper but seeing as i don't have a sound card or know what that is, it seems like a safer bet to spend extra 100 so im not totally in the dark. its a dj controller you run through a laptop, instead of using vinyl or cd's you play everything from a mp3 library and comes with a version of traktor.

have you seen those in ear monitors they seem really impressive, but for the time being i probably run it through my bass amp if i couldn't get a monitor beforehand.

also what would the advantages be of vinyl? i have no idea about vinyl or how durable it is. or i ever wanted to if i could put what i produce on vinyl.
Last edited by Raging Bull at Jul 31, 2009,
#23
in ear monitors? how would that work when you need to also use your headphones? i don't get it..

vinyl offers great sound quality and warmth of sound (provided the records are kept in good condition) and it's something tangible that can be manipulated (therefore more desirable than something purely digital) and it's great fun to collect records and hold onto them for years/forever.

i can't consider 'virtual djs' that use software to mix on the same level as djs who use records or cds. the whole fun of mixing, and what is impressive about it to me, is that someone is using their ears to detect differences in bpm between two tracks and correct those to the best of their ability, to align those tracks manually so the beats are in sync, and find ways in which two tracks can be mixed together to create something new and interesting... it's not quite the same if a computer program tells you the bpms, automatically makes the tracks the same speed, lines up the beats, or any of that. also it's just much nicer and more "real" to actually manipulate a record or cdj platter yourself to make adjustments (or do more advanced things like scratching) than to click a mouse. just a personal opinion but it's definitely one shared by others.

tbqh, i don't think you should go off and buy anything until you've gained more knowledge of the music you'll be playing, and what djing is all about. not trying to be harsh but i think it would definitely be wise to read as much as you can, watch some djs in action, talk to more djs, etc first. you'll be able to make a better decision about what suits your needs if you wait a while and arm yourself with more info, and some experience if you can have a go at using someone else's gear.
from daylight...
...into darkness
#24
i bought a book a couple days ago and finished it. it went through the history of house music and hip hop and talks about different things such as techniques, what things are called, how some songs are structured, how the energy of the music should be structured as when to to make the music rise, had some scratching and crossfading pratices in it. what really kept me intrested was it had really well known dj's talk about their experiences such q bert, dj am, sasha, oakenfold, a trak, above and beyond, dj yoda, grand wizard theodore and other dj's. that and i've been watching videos on youtube and have been watching the tutorials and such and there a couple of groups who do mixes which uses the same set up i think im better off with which is 2 gem cdt 525 cdj's, and a numark mixer instead of the behringer 700 i was thinking of getting since you said they are of poor quality.

right now im just trying to listen to much music as i can to figure what i like and what would be appealing to people who don't listen to this kind of music. i also checked out beatport and why is that every song is like a $1.50 or $2 as opposed to itunes which sells their songs for $ 1, aren't some of the artist on it independent like deadmau5 who got there start on beatport, on second thought if someones willing to pay that much why not. how does the 10 free downloads work do they change over time and if they do and i downloaded this group and they posted a new group would i be able to download those also our do you get a those 10 and thats it or do the rest that come out like the itunes free song of the week were their just giving them away constantly.
Last edited by Raging Bull at Aug 2, 2009,
#25
If you want to get started in DJing but don't want to go all out and buy all the gear, try a computer program such as:
Virtual DJ
Traktor
Ableton

All of those have demos available and tutorials on Youtube. If you decide you like it, you can stick with digital and get a MIDI controller or you can ditch the computer and go for CDJs and a mixer.

@Raging Bull: A lot of music on Beatport isn't available on iTunes. Hence, they charge more.
Also, if you're going with CDJs, get Pioneer CDJ 200s. Forget Gem Cdt 525s.