Posted tagged ‘dj’

Explaining The Downside to Everyone Learning How to DJ

February 7, 2014

Note:  As someone who started DJing late in life, I hold no animosity towards newer people entering the game. This blog just states facts.

As technology creates an easier path to DJing, the world now contains more DJs than ever.  Yet,  a downside exists.

Borrowed from theguardian.com.

First, let me explain supply and demand.  Let’s say only ten people in the world knows how to DJ.  Yet, there’s a heavy demand for their services.  As long as some people can afford it, these ten DJs own the ability to charge extremely high rates.  The less available a product or service, the more you can charge…if the demand remains high.

Over time, more and more people learn DJIng.  As this goes on, fearing future competition, some DJs may not want others learning the craft.  Next, technology creates easier accessibility to DJing, creating even more DJs.  As more and more DJs enter the arena, rates go down.  As the supply rises, the price lowers.

I’ll be honest with you, I do not know if veteran DJs charge cheaper rates now.  Yet, I do know one thing.  The oversupply of DJs inspires venue owners to find the cheapest DJ available.  Many times, the arrangement involves offering free drinks instead of paying money.  Desiring to play, many DJs fall for this, just like I did.  A DJ doesn’t like the offer?  Another DJ will gladly grab it.  If an oversupply of DJs didn’t exist, many venues wouldn’t get away with this foolishness.   With a shorter supply of DJs, the cheap venue owner would be forced to pay more money, especially if high-paying patrons demand a DJ.

Now, we see the downside of everyone learning how to DJ.  Because of the oversupply,  pay rates for DJs go down.

Of course, standing-out lives as the DJ’s most powerful weapon.  Refuse presenting mediocre skills and more money follows.

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Seven Important Reasons a DJ Should Blog

December 8, 2013

Some people recommend DJs having their own website, advice I agree with.  Done right, a website proves to be very beneficial.  Yet, I shall give seven important reasons why a DJ must start a blog.

1.     Blogs expose your services to new people:  On a blog, a DJ can advertise their services.  Many free blog sites don’t allow this.  So, the DJ may want to invest money in a self-hosted sited, a site where you yourself control the content.  Free blog sites are known to play the censorship game, which can lead to a blog being deleted.

2.    The DJ keeps a loyal fan base: When folks see themselves in a DJ’s blogs, the more likely they will keep coming back to the DJ’s night.

3.    Fans know more about you:  When people see the real you, they may respect you even more.  Of course, if they see you’re a jerk and don’t appreciate them, they may refuse returning to your nights.

4.    Opportunity to expose the music you really like:  Some people realize a DJ may play certain music as a compromise.  They may play a shitty song because the crowd likes it.  Yet, some folks are dying to know the music the DJ really likes.  They want to know what the DJ plays on their car stereo or what music they upload on their smart phones. This goes back to people learning more about you, the third benefit I mentioned.

5.    Opportunity to expose your mixes:  I’m a little shaky on this one.  If you want to expose your mixes, a blog will help you.  Yet, here’s the thing; many web visitors own a short attention span. Because of that, many folks may not be willing to listen to a whole mix.

6.    Unlike some websites, blogs are easier to post:  Websites you have to learn codes just to post a paragraph or two.  Not so with blogs.

7.    Venues respect you more. (At least, the smart ones do.):  Most venues welcome any publicity.  Because I can easily post it on Facebook, I usually don’t post upcoming gigs on my blog.  Yet, I always post details of how the event went on my blog.  If it was good, that’s good publicity for the venue.

There are other benefits.  Yet, because I didn’t experience them personally, I avoided posting them.  I have heard of people receiving free things because of blogs.  Companies give free products for bloggers to review. Plus I have heard of people making money from ads placed on blogs.  Like I mentioned before, I have never experienced that.  Still, it doesn’t mean that won’t work for other DJs.

So, there you have it, seven reasons for having a DJ blog. Digital DJ Tips lists more reasons. Hopefully, this inspires other DJs.

Five Real Reasons Why Your Favorite Bar DJ Is Now Gone

December 6, 2013

One night, you go to one of your favorite bars and you notice the DJ’s absence.  What happened?  Usually, not what you’ve been told.  Here are five reasons.

1. Responsibility for the night changed hands:  The DJ probably talked to a different person before gaining a spot.  As that person is no longer in charge of the night, the new person comes along and screw things up.   Sometimes, they may replace the DJ with mediocre bands or with another DJ.

2. The venue pissed the DJ off:  Some folks are skilled leaders.  Others aren’t.  Non-leaders need to sit down somewhere because they are prone to fuck things up.  If the DJ is bringing your venue money, why would you want to piss the person off?  How do venues do this? I’ll give an example.  First, some folks who think the world revolves around them complain about the music.  Some of these people show up once in a blue moon, or they rarely spend much money in the venue.  Yet, they complain when things don’t go their way.  So, what does the venue do?  They cater to them anyway and attempt persuading the DJ to the do same thing.  The DJ must now play music for people who don’t bring the bar much business.   Now, the DJ is pissed, pissed-off so much they leave.

3. The venue doesn’t respect DJs: I think live entertainment is overrated.  There.  I said it.  Nothing against musicians.  Yet, the right DJ can bring in as much money or even more money than a mediocre band.  Still, some venues desperately want to be seen as a live venue bar, even if it’s putting them in the hole.  If one now sees bands instead of the DJ, not respecting DJs is exactly what happened.

4. The venue is being cheap: If another DJ now plays, one may want to compare what this person is being paid compared to the last person.  If the new DJ is making less money, there’s the reason why the last DJ got fired.  The venue wanted someone cheaper.

Also, some venues think playing Pandora off a laptop can replace a DJ.  They do this by hooking a laptop up to the venues sound system. Why go this route? Again, the venue is trying to be cheap, which leads to the last point on why the DJ is gone.

5. The venue is having financial problems:  Of all the reasons, I’m willing to bet this is the main reason a DJ gets fired.  The venue itself may have pissed-off too many patrons, too many patrons that are now not returning.  Instead of admitting their screw-ups, the venue blames the DJ.  Some will even publicly badmouth the DJ.  Yet, the real reason may be the venue no longer can afford the DJ, one of the reasons they may all of a sudden want to play Pandora off a laptop.

So, there you have it.  Can DJ skills contribute to a DJ being fired?  Of course.  Still, experience tells me that is the least reason a DJ gets fired.  More than likely, one of the reasons I mentioned may be the real cause of the DJ’s absence.

Seven Reasons I Love Being A DJ

April 9, 2013

happy hour 1

Saying I love DJing is an understatement.  Here are seven reasons I love it so much.

1. I’m a night person. Most gigs happen in the evening.  If being a DJ was mostly a morning thing, I would probably hate it.  I’m usually cranky and easily annoyed during the mornings.

2. Free booze. Well, most of the time you get free booze. I’m mostly a Bud Light drinker.  As I drink that cheap booze, I really won’t be breaking the bar or lounge.

3. I love music.  Even before I got into DJing, I’ve always collected music.  I’ve always bought and read music magazines too, magazines like Rolling Stone and The Source.

4. Young ladies half your age hit on you. Okay, this only happened once, and she was cute too.   When I’m talking half my age, realize I’m a dude in his mid-forties.  Nothing happened.  In all reality, I prefer women who are at least thirty.  Yet, a young lady half my age hitting on me does boost the ego.

5. Gives me blogging material.  Some folks enjoy my blogs involving people’s stupid behavior towards the DJ.

6. The friends.  I’ve met some wonderful people through DJing.  Some turned into good friends.

7.  The fun.  I ain’t going to change the world of DJing.  I have no plans or intentions to.  I’m mostly in it for the fun.  To quote Morris Day from the movie Purple Rain, “I wanna see asses wiggling and titties jiggling.”

Also, I’m not one of those music snobs who always badmouths commercial music.  A person may request the most stupidest song in the world,  Yet, if it gets people dancing.  I’m playing it.  Popped a molly!  I’m sweating!

If you’re a DJ, tell us why you love DJing in the comments section.

Nine Things I Learned From Being A DJ

March 28, 2013
Photo by Mayra Lentz

Photo by Mayra Lentz

After three years in the DJ arena, I noticed things I never realized before I became a DJ. Here’s nine of them.

1. DJs are treated like shit: Let’s just get this one out of the way. Forget the image of the superstar DJ playing in front of hundreds to thousands of people. Usually, that’s someone who produces his or her own music, music that brought more attention their way.

Also, most DJs don’t work in glamorous nightclubs either. Your typical DJ more than likely mixes music in a bar, wedding or an event. These spots are usually where people treat DJs like shit.

A DJ is there to provide a fun atmosphere. He or she is not a jukebox. How would you like it if the same people kept telling you to play this and play that all damned night? That shit gets annoying after awhile. Also, there are reasons why DJs won’t play or carry certain songs. For one, they may not have heard the requested song yet. Still, they eventually will. Second, the song may be inappropriate for the evening. For every time the whole place seems to enjoy themselves, I would really love to smack the fucker who requests a song that brings the whole energy level down. Believe it or not, your wonderful song request just might be one of those songs that shouldn’t be played.

2. Older people arrive early and leave early: This is when I usually play “the classics”. Don’t get it twisted. This does not mean the over forty crowd does not appreciate current hits. Yet, they appreciate older music too.

3. Younger people arrive later, and some will stay all night if you let them: For DJs who enjoy watching intense booty-shaking, this is the best time. Not only do the younger folks have more energy, they also don’t mind getting one hour sleep before having to work the next day. They’ll do intense booty-shaking all night if you let them.

4. Younger people love the classics: Sometimes, folks under thirty would ask for songs older than forty-something me. As long as they’re having a good time, I don’t mind it.

5. Sometimes, it’s best to cater to the older crowd: Anyone who don’t appreciate and recognize the spending power of folks over forty is a complete idiot who should keep their stupidity out of the nightlife business. Not only do older people buy more expensive drinks than the younger crowd, they also tip more. Only a moron would not notice that. Younger people buy the cheapest drinks and many don’t even tip. Yet, the younger crowd tends to be more demanding.

This isn’t always the case. Some younger folks do tip and buy expensive drinks. Also, some older folks are cheap as hell. Still, when it comes to spending money, the older crowd has the younger crowd beat.

(I say over forty. Yet, over thirty fits it just as well.)

6. White people are shitty tippers too: You usually hear the stereotype of black people not tipping. That’s because many black people don’t know you’re supposed to hand money over to people who are already receiving pay for their services. Yet, many white people do comprehend tipping. Still, after playing many of their song requests, some white people look at me as if I’m speaking a foreign language when I bring up tipping.

7. Some folks from “underground scenes” are full of shit: Let’s be real. Some of them ran to the underground scene because the mainstream rejected them. Some underground folks are as much of an asshole as the folks they rebel against. Some are even more of an asshole than the folks they rebel against.

My apologies for playing commercial music women want to shake their asses to. I know how it is. If only only folks would appreciate the important underground act only five people know about. Pat yourself on the back for being one of those five.

8. Only other DJs and their groupies bitch about a DJ’s equipment: Despite what other DJs told you, a DJ can still rock the house with just a laptop and the right software. As long as the DJ pays attention to the crowd, he or she should do fine. For vinyl DJs who don’t believe that, they can go fuck themselves and remain in the dinosaur age where they belong.

9. Everything I believed about people proved true, both good and bad: Most people are decent, if not extremely nice. If they enjoy your vibe, they will definitely come back and spend money.

Only a small handful of people are social fuck-ups. Yet, these types will ruin your whole evening…if you let them. Sometimes, it’s selfish shit. Some folks just want the DJ to lick their ass all night. To them, the DJ must lick their ass because they’re so special and so above other people. Some of these types insult the DJ when he or she don’t lick ass. All of a sudden, the DJ is now a shitty DJ.

Other types are just plain jealous. When they badly crave the attention the DJ is receiving, some envious types start criticizing the DJ’s skills and/or choice in music. All of a sudden, they know just the music the DJ should be playing. Lo and behold if the women like the DJ, that just adds more gas to an already burning fire.

Then there’s the small group of genuinely nice folks. They’re the ones who always tip or even buy the DJ a drink. Plus when folks talk shit about the DJ, these folks have the DJ’s back. It’s not even all about tips or drinks, a DJ gets happy when someone compliments their music. Genuinely nice people do it all the time.

I always thought most folks were decent, and that only a handful were truly assholes. My experiences as a DJ proved it.

These are the nine things I learned. Are there any other DJs who learned something during their gigs? You’re free to comment.

Three Reasons Some DJs Deserve Hate

February 21, 2013

Most DJs are nice people, always respectful and friendly.  Yet, there are those who deserve every ounce of hatred aimed at them.  These are the ones, I shall pick on.  In no particular order,  here are three reasons on why some DJs deserve hate.

laptop dj

1. Looking down on Top 40 music:  I understand, a lot of Top 40 music does suck.  Nowadays, you can’t tell a shitty urban/soul song from a shitty dance-pop song.  Many Top 40 songs sound too much alike.   Still, that doesn’t mean ALL Top 40 suck.  Anyone who claims to know so much about music would recognize this.  This is what separates the excellent DJ from the shitty DJ, a skilled DJ possesses the ability to dig through shit and find diamonds.

2. Not taking requests:  True enough, many song requests are annoying.  Once I have a good vibe going with one genre, someone asks me to play a song from another one, something that could screw up the whole vibe.  Also, after taking a request, some people keep coming back asking for more and more songs.  There’s only one thing that prevents me from getting upset about shit like this: tipping.

Still, despite the annoyance, I take requests anyway.  Sometimes, it’s hard to read the crowd.  The right request might tip you in the right direction for a more pleasing atmosphere.

3. Being a jukebox:  If the establishment’s owner talked the DJ into this practice, I’ll make an exception. In this case, the establishment should be ashamed.   Yet, if the DJ made this choice, they themselves deserve scorn.  There is no written law stating a DJ has to take every fuckin’ song request.  Some songs should not be played, especially when they disrupt the vibe the DJ is trying to achieve.

Knowing damned well it’s going to fuck things up, some people ask for the wrong songs on purpose.  When this happens, who do you think folks are going to blame?  The person requesting the song or the DJ?  Many times they blame the DJ.

I’m sure there may be other reasons.   Also, I know there may be some exceptions to the reasons I listed.  Still, if a reader has another reason a DJ deserves hate, they are more than welcomed to leave a comment.

Created a New Blog for Camera Phone Pics

January 13, 2013

Recently, I created a blog dedicated to my camera phone pics.

New Years 2013: behind the bar

I call it Stone Crazy’s Camera Phone Pics. (Click on the title to get there.)

Notice I use the words “camera phone” and not “iphoneography”, a current word for iPhone pics.  I avoided that silly-assed word on purpose.  You never know.  The iPhone may become obsolete.

The blog you’re currently reading shall remain mostly a DJ and nightlife blog, one that I plan to keep going.

Hump Day 12-12-2013 and Peacock, Wally's 12-14-2012 079