July 2, 2013 at 12:19 am #41784
I’ve been trying to play out for a year and no one wants to give a gig to a teen. My first try was a school dance.
Turns out the school hires through an agency. I figured maybe I could try a school party. The couple parties I tried the teachers either said no music, or they said they wouldn’t “trust” a student. I then went to friends. They either didn’t want music, told me they could just use an ipod, or their parents hired what they called a “real dj.” So that meant djing at school or for friends was out. I asked around the family to see if anyone was planning any parties. To my luck I found out on both sides of my family have radio djs who are the go to’s for them. Since my family, friends, and school won’t hire me I don’t where else I could get a chance to play out. Any advice is really appreciated.July 2, 2013 at 12:37 am #41785
Sometimes it’s not just what you know but who you know. You’re on the right track by asking people close to you, that is how I got my first gig. I started out djing for free at lounges and gave out my business cards during the parties I did. Now I’m not saying go out and do it for free or undercut other djs. I’m saying you have to show people and clients why they should choose you, you need to sell yourself(ex: Why should I pick you instead of Him/Her? I’ll do it for free… I’ll dj for you to hear how good I am at no charge… I have censored and G rated music…. I play several genres….I have recommendations from so and so……. I have a following…. etc)
Now places you should try out are:
- Flea Markets
- Block Parties
- Friends Birthday Parties, even pool parties, BBQs
- Music stores or malls
Things you need are Business cards and if you can’t afford them make 7- 10 mins Demo CDs and put your contact information on the cd or put it in a nice CD envelope(You can get these at the discount store or 99 cent store in the U.S. for 99 cents… Or get some cd cases).July 2, 2013 at 2:14 am #41790
you have family in radio? ask them if you can tag along as a roadie! for free or little pay! what youll learn in return in priceless.
my cousin took me along as super cheap labor when i was 13 but i had no idea i would fall in love w/ this crazy thing!
i was just there to carry crates and gear and make a quick $60 and fast fwd to 20+ yrs and im still in this game!July 2, 2013 at 6:48 am #41802
@ DJ Emazing: I’m going to have to check out the stores, I live right by a mall. But what would I need to do to get a gig there? I’ve never seen a dj around here. Thanks!
@ DJ SpecializED: I worked as a groupie for one at a wedding, I’ll see if he needs any help again. And again, thanks!July 2, 2013 at 7:12 am #41803
What you’d need is a controller, small PA (if you don’t have one perhaps you can borrow one, perhaps there is a PA rental company that is sympathetic if you are playing in a mall on a saturday afternoon in return for some advertising) and a MIC!
Suggest to the store owner that you will come play music on a saturday afternoon for free. If you have the PA, tell him you’ll bring that for free too (otherwise see if you can have him chip in for the rental fee, which shouldn’t be too bad for two active speakers with stands anyway). Have all your marketing materials ready. If you can afford it, have one of those roll-up banner thingies (6 or 7 foot high) made with your name/logo/website/phonenumber.
Make short sets and in between do some announcing for the store (make sure you find out what the owner would like) and maybe for the PA rental company if they sponsored your gear. And of course you do your shout-outs.
Don’t forget to check for permits, mall rules and such. Don’t want to be shut down by the local rent-a-cop.
p.s. A groupie is one of those clingy fans that hang around artists all the time. The term you were looking for is roadie I think LOLJuly 2, 2013 at 7:22 am #41806
Yeah, roadie, lol. What would I play too, Would it be mostly pop?July 2, 2013 at 7:30 am #41807
That’s the million-dollar question right there. On the one hand you want to show what you do normally. You want people to go “hey, I like this guys style, might invite him to play at my next party”. On the other hand if your style is a bit out there, you don’t want people detouring away from you and the shop you are playing at either.
Talk to the shop owner, maybe find out what kind of music they play in the store normally to get an idea. Put yourself in the minds of those that go shopping on a saturday afternoon. Not sure they’d be ready for happy hardcore :).
Your job (next to your own agenda of promoting yourself) should be to bring people into the place you are playing at. In my opinion that works best with highly recognisable and accepted tunes.
Oh, and keep the volume in check too. No use blasting people out of their socks.
C.July 2, 2013 at 7:44 am #41809
Nick Powers, post: 41959, member: 2466 wrote: @ DJ Emazing: I’m going to have to check out the stores, I live right by a mall. But what would I need to do to get a gig there? I’ve never seen a dj around here. Thanks!
Even better, like I said you have to sell yourself. Talk to the managers, especially if they have one of those people who are selling some special products and have a stage with a tri pod and speakers. You should also try Macy’s if your mall has one. I know Macy’s over here in New York City, they have a dj when ever their is a special sale, though he only had the ttm 57 and I think he was using internal mode or something cause he didn’t have any turntables or cd jays. Hopefully have a mixer/controller.
July 2, 2013 at 10:50 am #41810
- You have to sell yourself
- What makes you special/different from everyone else
- It’s good that they don’t have a dj you could be the first dj there
- Don’t get your hopes up, cause if you get rejected it hurts more
i will tell you what i did
it worked for me but i can’t assure you that it will work for you as well
first have a weekly visit at the venue you want to play (don’t go immediately for the big ones)
you will see you will get contacted by PR managers in order to book from them as a costumer. after a month ask to see the main manager and talk to him
you should look confident
try not look that you need the job.just try to make him think that he needs you. for example i pointed out that there was no trance music during there parties and it is a huge genre with a lot of fans and djs(i gave also the example of many top djs,avb,svd,bt etc) thus he saw he a had at least 50-100 people every night not satisfied.thus the need for at least 30 min of mainstream trance.then i said i am a dj.i told him that i was comfortable with the equipment and showed him some of my mixes.the following week i was asked to play some tech house in the beggining in order the main djs to get some rest and at 2:30 i had my hour of trance. one gig leads to an another. try to be a serious dj that is a teenager.not a teenager dj that tries to be serious.charge less and be better than your older colleagues.July 3, 2013 at 1:32 am #41845
Okay thanks for the help guys, I have some hope now hahaJuly 3, 2013 at 6:05 am #41851
And ow yeah another thing is Networking, go out there found out who’s who the local DJ’s in your area, get to knows them, be humble and friendly guy,
Sometimes they do an event or two, who knows they be like hey man you wanna spin in our event?August 25, 2013 at 5:34 pm #43475
At a mall, would a small pa speaker like a eurolive b205d work?August 25, 2013 at 8:23 pm #43476
Nick Powers, post: 43632, member: 2466 wrote: At a mall, would a small pa speaker like a eurolive b205d work?
A small speaker could suffice, just remember that something as a mall is almost as bad as playing outside, which means you’d need more power for the same sound level “experience”. If you don’t have a PA of your own, I would not go buy something like this, but rent a set of good 12″s with stands. Easier to turn a speaker down than running it at full power (and risk distortion) because they can’t really bring the volume).
Also it is impossible to get a serious bass out of one 5″ speaker. There are physical limitations involved.
C.August 25, 2013 at 10:40 pm #43480
What about something like this
and a sub?August 26, 2013 at 3:02 am #43485
Steve (k-rex) RichmanParticipant
Those are passive (unpowered) speakers. You’d need an amp to power them, prolly not what you want.