Most DJ's have, at some stages, stared at their TVs in envy, watching some superstar DJ play to a crowd of thousands, lasers lighting up the sky and a sea of arms in the air. But how can you make sure it's you up there and it's YOU the crowd are shouting for...well, let's see.
Firstly, and this is important, it won't happen overnight, the majority of those 'lucky; DJs you see have done their time in the pubs and bars before even setting foot in a club. Despite his controversial appearance at the top of DJ Mags top 100 and widespread animosity from a section of the DJ community, David Guetta was DJ'ing for 20 years before the majority of us had even heard his name.
As with so many things practice is the key. While some people are naturally more 'rythmic' than others, mixing skills don't materialise overnight and it's essential to not try and run before you can walk. Learning to DJ can be a rewarding process but a difficult one too and it's certainly best to make mistakes at home before rushing into a gig without the condifence or experience you need. When it's just your cat judging your skills mistakes will go unpunished, in a club, a bad crowd responce early in your career can give your confidence a knock it may never recover from.
I'm not the best tutor when it comes to teaching essential DJ skills but there are plenty of people out there with that are willing to share their (vastly superior) experience. Check out YouTube, google and other sources for online guides and tips on basic DJ skills.
So...you'll need to find something to home your skills on and choosing the right equipment is essential on the road to the top. Now, it used to be a lot simpler, the majority of clubs would have a pair of Technics 1210 turntables and a pair of Pioneer CD decks (typically CDJ1000's). You always knew what to expect and you would turn up to the club with your music and play.
Although wonderfully predictable there were downsides to this arrangement. The main downside being that, in order to practice you skills at home, you would have to invest in similar gear. At getinthemix.com, we have always been the first choice for buying turntables, CD decks and DJ mixers with the most competitive packages in the UK. However, an industry standard Pioneer Pro DJ setup can set you back thousands which is a big investment when you are just starting out.
Luckily, now in 2013 and there alternatives for the DJ looking to work their way to the top. You may find that you already own a very vital part of your future DJ setup in the form of your laptop. "Going digital" is becoming increasingly popular amongst club DJs and involves storing and playing all your music from a laptop and manipulating it with a DJ controller. The DJ controller acts as your decks and mixer by replicating the layout of a traditional setup while all the clever processing and music storage is done via your laptop.
The most obvious benefit is that, providing the club allows, you can do all you practising at home and then, when you have a gig, you can take a relatively compact setup to the club and play on the same gear. Apart from the reduced size of the equipment, by storing your entire music library on a hard drive, you no longer need to arrive at the club with dozens of CD wallets or, worse still, boxes and boxes of heavy vinyl records (in fact, all you'll need is a shoulder bag).
The other key advantage of opting for a digital setup is the cost. If your laptop is fairly modern and can handle running DJ software then starting DJ’ing becomes surprisingly affordable. DJ controllers start from less than £100 leaving you money to spend on other DJ essentials. The best selling controller at the moment is the Numark Mixtrack Pro 2 which you can check out at the getinthemix website by clicking HERE.
Ask any experience DJ what the most valuable tool in their DJ arsenal is and I guarantee that more than half with say their headphones. While you're still practising at home, cheap headphones are often all you need to monitor your music. Once you set foot inside a club however and have the noise of the crowd and a 5kW Funktion One system to contend with then it suddenly becomes a very different story. Choosing a set of DJ headphones is a lot down to personal taste but, in my experience, this really isn't the place to scrimp on cost. The Sennheiser HD-25-II are one of the worlds best-selling DJ headphones and, although lacking the style and panache of some of their rivals, they offer exceptional sound isolation and their modular design means every part is user replaceable. Check out these legendary headphones HERE at getinthemix.com. Alternatively, check out our full range of DJ headphones.
There are still a few other things you may want to consider for your DJ setup including a DJ bag to put all your gear in and some professional studio monitor speakers for monitoring your mixes when you’re practising at home.
If you need any more advice on what you need to kick-start your DJ career or want to order today and get mixing then give our friendly sales team a call on 01206 845125.
Coming Up : So…You Wanna Be A MOBILE DJ?