May 4th, 2013
Just like Charlie Brown, most DJs are extremely proud of their music collections, and don’t relish the thought of ever giving a list of more than a handful of the tunes they own to any other DJs.
Digital DJ Tips reader Ahy writes: “My question is about the tracks you play during the How To Digital DJ Fast course. I realised that even though I have a wide collection of music, I am missing some extremely good stuff (like the ones you play during the course…).
“Please could you share the list of the 600 tracks that you say you regularly DJ with; if not, at least would you share your top 20 to 50 favourites so that I can start digging and reaching more? I started playing at a bar now playing exactly the genres that you mention you play in the course.”
February 6th, 2013
News & Opinion
By partnering with Beatport, mobile music discovery tool Shazam just got far more useful for DJs.
Shazam’s great, isn’t it? Remember the first time you used it to tag a track you thought you’d never know the name of? Trouble is, it’s been kind of patchy for dance music… until now.
Because today Shazam – the service that can tell you the title and artist of a tune just by “listening” to it via your mobile device – announced its new partnership with the biggest DJ dance music store online, Beatport. This means two things for DJs: Firstly, all of Beatport’s catalogue is now on Shazam, and secondly, you can buy from Beatport from directly within Shazam’s apps.
January 17th, 2013
Dig out any music playing devices you can find and use them to make sure there’s not a room in your house where you can’t get music on – fast.
Last week in One Simple Habit That Will Massively Improve Your DJ Sets we explained how if you take a few steps to tune into the music you hear around you day-to-day (and not when you’re consciously sat in front of your screen in “music buying” mode), you’ll end up with a better, more crowd-friendly DJ collection.
This week I’d like to take a look at a long list of really simple things you can do to put some of this into practice. Do just a handful of these things and I guarantee you’ll become a better DJ.
December 22nd, 2012
Our reader uses Rhapsody as a streaming music service, but finds it to be too mainstream to discover hidden gems that will make his sets stand out from the crowd.
Reader Chris Games over on the Digital DJ Tips Forum asks: “OK guys so I’m building up my library now and my problem is, I want to find good songs, but not just stuff everybody’s already heard.
“I’m saying I don’t want to just play Avicii, Tiesto, Swedish House Mafia, etc. I want to cultivate my own unique library which of course has hits but has my own flavour of tracks.
July 29th, 2012
It’s summer (here in the northern hemisphere, anyway), and Latin house can sound mighty good on these hot nights. But can you help our reader to find it online?
Digital DJ Tips reader Albert from Holland writes: “Every now and then, I stumble upon some Latin house music, but if I check Beatport, I can’t find it as a separate category. I suspect that there are a lot of good Latin house songs going round (even good remixes of popular house music), but where can I find them?
“To give an example: Vamos / DJ Falk – Bumba Meu Boi / Franky Rizardo (which are actually on Beatport). It’s more to point out the style I’m looking for. Maybe the readers can help me and give some tips about websites where I can find this stuff? Maybe there are “specialised” websites, or can somebody help me in searching with specific categories… Thank you very much for your help!”
June 10th, 2012
Lots of different mixes of a typical club tune, including original, radio and acappella... but what's the difference between them all, and who uses them?
Reader Jake Robinson writes: “Looking through all the different websites and stores where you can buy digital music, I notice there are a lot of songs that have an ‘Original Mix’, but there is also a ‘Radio Edit’, which, from what I understand is just a shortened, typically edited version of the original song.
“Is there more to it than that? Is there any reason I should buy one instead of the other, maybe for legal reasons, or is it purely up to me and which song I want to DJ with?”
June 6th, 2012
News & Opinion
by Chris Mihas
Coloured vinyl, iconic sleeve designs, searching in stores, saving up to go record shopping... all of these things may have contributed to people remembering the titles of songs better in the past than nowadays...
Having DJed for nearly 17 years, I’ve witnessed first-hand how the industry has evolved, and I must say this is an exciting time to be a DJ. One thing that I don’t find exciting, though, is the lack of knowledge people have about music nowadays.
Indeed, to be honest I find it very disappointing. I don’t ever recall a time when people were so unsure about song titles and artists, and nowhere is it clearer than when people try to give DJs song requests. If you’re a working DJ and you’re reading this, then I’m sure you can relate to my point.
May 20th, 2012
Swedish House Mafia: Not the be-all and end-all of dance music.
Forum member Bradley Stone writes: “Hello guys. I have been inspired by the buzz created by DJing and am thus planning on getting my own set up to start practising on. However, I feel that my music taste may be ‘too commercial’, with my library limited to commercial content only at the moment (Guetta, SHM, Daft Punk etc…)
“My question is, how can I expand the music I listen to? I love electronic/house music but need pointing in the direction of new music/artists that I can consider?”
May 10th, 2012
News & Opinion
It wil be easier to find great new music for your DJ sets thanks to faster searching, the ability to stream new music continuously, and better access to what other people are loving..
We thoroughly recommend you avoid SoundCloud for posting your DJ sets – unless you want to struggle to get them accepted in the first place, or don’t mind seeing your work disappear without notice at any time, of course. Trust us: It’s not a good place to post DJ sets.
What SoundCloud does better than any other music website, though, is offer a place for producers to post their original work, thus making it an excellent tool for DJs on the lookout for fresh new sounds for their sets – not least because many are freely and legally downloadable. And it’s all about to get better still, with a whole host of new features announced today that represent the biggest overhaul of the service since it launched. Let’s find out what we should be getting excited about:
April 5th, 2012
MusicFriends - a clever way of sharing your entire iOS music library.
While DJs are traditionally pretty guarded about letting others look through their music collections, in today’s social media-friendly age, things are definitely changing. Imagine being able to share your music library with your friends, especially with fellow DJs – to plan sets together, or just listen to each others’ new tracks, for instance. Well if you’ve got an iOS device, new app MusicFriends – a free offering – allow you to do just that, allowing you and other users to share your music libraries having linked up via Facebook, Twitter or direct email.
Once you’ve installed MusicFriends, you need to register it with a nickname, password and email address. If you’re going to use Facebook or Twitter to send invitations then these services will need to be linked via the settings page as well.
March 29th, 2012
The iCrates app, mobile cratedigging!
iCrates is an online magazine site exploring the dusty old world of vinyl music, with reviews and other items of interest. Strangely enough, they have recently branched out and developed an iOS app to assist you when making your purchases or just browsing for music.
The app is designed for you to access quickly information about specific releases, trawling the combined online resources of eBay, Discogs, iTunes and Amazon. (First point: It would be great to see this list extended to cover some other major online resources such as Gemm and maybe a few larger music stores like Juno.) As such it will appeal to the trainspotter in you – and you’re a DJ, so whatever format you play, you do have a trainspotter / cratedigger / charity-shop-bargain-bin-botherer inside you somewhere, don’t you?)
March 15th, 2012
Recreating the vinyl look, feel and sound on your iOS device? That's the promise of AirVinyl, one of three music playback apps we look at today.
I hope you’re as obsessive as I am about ensuring all the information about your DJing tracks is correct – title, artist, album and so on. After all, it’s pretty much essential for effective use of DJ software. But more than that, it has the added bonus of making whatever general music playback software you use work better too.
And if you’re an iPad / iPhone / iPod Touch user, there’s a wider choice than just the standard and rather uninspiring Music app to choose from. You’ve done the work on your collection, so why not use your downtime to get to know your music a bit better? Here are three alternative music library apps that will help you to do just that:
February 24th, 2012
The DJcity Record Pool App: Auditioning the latest promos on the move.
DJcity is a record pool service, which since 2006 has offered a digital version via its website. Record pools are a well established part of the DJ industry, and offer unlimited tracks from their constantly updated catalogues for a fixed monthly subscription.
They generally focus on chart and dance releases (although record pools do exist in other areas) in DJ friendly formats and mixes, and so are ideally suited to jobbing DJs who need fast access to the latest tunes. May such DJs find them a convenient way of keeping up with essential new music.
December 20th, 2011
Beatport Pro brings Beatport's extensive catalogue to your desktop, complete with background listening.
How much “cratedigging” do you do? As a DJ, whether vinyl, CD, or digital (or even better, all three!), I hope your answer to that question is “lots”. After all, you’re only as good as your music, so it always pays to spend as much time as possible looking for great new stuff.
Of course, digital has completely blown apart the way DJs search for music (not least because it’s destroyed 90% of record stores), which is why we here at Digital DJ Tips are pretty much obsessed with exploring how DJs can improve, streamline and refine the way they search for music on a day-to-day basis. Enter Beatport Pro.
October 29th, 2011
Nathan wants sites that can help him to discover music for his DJ sets according to his mood. Do you have a music discovery site that you use in this way? Pic: Desktop Nexus
Reader Nathan writes: “So there are a million streaming services out there, seemingly it’s big business. What I want to know is, are aware of a site which you can select music by a mood group? To help clarify let’s use ‘singy’ as an example – the definition of ‘singy’ being those tracks you can’t help but sing along too!
“I basically want to go to a site, enter some basic details like overarching genre (indie or dance), choose a date range for age and other info like this plus my mood group and that’s it.
September 23rd, 2011
News & Opinion
By any means necessary: Cratedigging is part of what DJing has always been about, but there's more to how some of those records got there than you may think....
This site does not condone stealing music. We don’t talk about it, and we don’t help people to do it. It would be biting the hand that feeds us. Hell, it would be biting our own hand. After all, increasingly DJs and producers are one and the same thing.
Ah, but it’s not all as clean and easy as that. You see, DJs have always stolen music. In fact, so have producers (Amen break anyone?). Damn, is there anyone who’s not got their fingers in the musical till in this business? The answer is basically, no.
August 20th, 2011
Beatport has been revamped and certainly has a huge catalogue, but if it's your only port of call for buying DJ music, you're paying too much and missing some obvious tricks too.
DJ Kooltura says: “Thanks for a great website, it has helped me a lot. But I still can’t find enough information about where to buy music. Beatport? iTunes? Others?”
Digital DJ tips says: With the demise of the record store, this is one of the most common questions we receive. Finding an effective and fulfilling way to fill your virtual record box with goodies is something that every new digital DJ needs to prioritise.