Here's an easy way to get a "jingle" or "ident" for you to use in your DJ sets. It takes advantage of a curious AT&T website, that has a speech synthesiser where you can "make" the site say anything you want, and download the results for use in your DJing software.
We're going to find out how you can use this site to create a DJ ident that says your name or the name of your club night (for instance). Then we'll look at how it can be used in your DJ sets or mixes to add a bit of professional polish and help people to remember your name or club night a bit better.
So, first thing's first, here's the site: AT&T Labs Natural Voices® Text-to-Speech Demo
When you get there, type in what you want the synthesiser to say. You'll have to experiment a bit to get it right. Try and write phonetically; experiment with splitting words into two shorter parts if they are a bit rushed; try making your words into a question (by just putting a question mark on the end) to get different intonation, and so on. There's lots of voices to experiment with, although I found Crystal to be the coolest for my indents.
(You'll probably need a bit of time to get past just getting your computer to swear at you, that's fine...)
When you're ready, download the file and, if you want, load it into a file editor to trim it, stretch it, put some echo on it, whatever... (I talk about music file editors in my extra software for DJs article here.)
Using it in your mixes
So now you've got it, all that's left is to play it in your mix or in front of your audience.
At your gig or in the mix, just load it onto a spare deck, put a cue point at the start, and drop it in. You may want to loop it, and can experiment with the tempo to make it work behind the beat of whatever music you're playing.
To show you how it can sound, here is an example of it in use, from my DJ residency at Sunset Rocks here in Spain - listen to the first minute of the mix to hear me looping the spoken phrase "Sunset Rocks!" over the start of the track.
It's easy to do, fun, and gives you a great little tool to use to differentiate both your live mixes and your recorded ones. A real Digital DJ Tip if ever I saw one!
(By the way, this is something I remembered while reading and commenting on an article recently published over on Ean Golden's DJ TechTools website about good sources for acapellas for DJs, which is well worth a read if you want to know more about using acapellas etc in your sets.)
Have you got any personalised idents for your DJ sets? Found some 70s soul star randomly saying your name on an obscure track that you use to introduce yourself at every set? Paid to have your own jingles made? We'd love to hear about it.