12 Weird DJ Habits (That Non-DJs Will Never Understand!)

Phil Morse | Founder & Tutor
Read time: 5 mins
Last updated 30 April, 2019

It seems perfectly normal to us DJs… these are things everyone does right? Er, wrong! The list of things here have been spotted by many of you in our community over the years (we’ve written about some of them before), but they are all tell-tale signs that you are either a DJ, or you have everything it takes to be one.

If you do these things and you’re not yet a DJ… get started, dude. It ain’t ever going to leave you, you know!

Those 12 habits…

  1. Trying to get your car windscreen (windshield) wipers in time with the music – Even spotting as soon as they are in time is bad enough, but yeah, actually turning them off and on again so they line up with the downbeats on your music when driving – people, this is not normal. (Yeah, I do it too…)
  2. Ditto with your indicators (turn lights) – And the best bit about this one is, you always get to turn them on right on a downbeat, and they make a satisfying click, like a metronome. And you get to learn how much before the downbeat you have to push the lever so the first “click” beatmatches perfectly with the music. You too? Good!
  3. Cupping your hand over any small, round portable speaker (or even your headphones) and slowly releasing it for a fantastic “filter” effect – I mean, everyone does this right? That’s what small Bluetooth speakers are made for, correct? No? This isn’t normal? Come on, you’re living in another world, non-believers!
  4. Finding yourself saying “This sounds just like…” whenever you hear a new song for the first time, and immediately planning a mix of it in your head – Honestly? This one can stop me in my tracks – in the gym, on the car radio – I just go into a state of mental paralysis until I work out the song I already know well that would mix just great with this new song. There is always a small amount of “Ha! They just ripped it off!”, although usually of course I remember that that’s what music is all about (stealing artfully from what’s gone before)
  5. Whatever the strong emotion, your first reaction is to find a song for it – Girlfriend or boyfriend left you? Cat, dog or family member just died? Got a promotion? Burned your dinner? There’s aways a f***ing song, however serious or lighthearted, and whether good news or bad, that you just NEED to hear, and hear LOUD, to help you even process the emotions involved. Yeah, I KNOW this isn’t normal – but I honestly don’t know what I’d do without such songs. Please, somebody tell me this isn’t just me!
  6. Whenever a song comes on (especially one you haven’t heard before) that you like, you immediately stop listening to anyone who’s talking to you – This, sadly, simply cannot be helped. It’s like an addiction.It’s not like you mean to be rude. It’s just that.. well you NEED to hear. You don’t want to miss a Shazam, right? In fact, you may go as far as to hear your voice telling your conversation partner to STOP talking to you so you can hear it better! Yes, this is truly antisocial and not good for relationships. And no, I am not excusing it, just reporting it…
  7. You can’t have fun in clubs any more – Look, I truly hope this isn’t ALL DJs. But it is me. I can’t help myself! I critique EVERYTHING – the DJs, the music, the lights, the way the warm-up went, the sound system – everything! It’s a horrible thing to be afflicted with. I think this one comes after a decade or two,  as I used to love clubbing when I started DJing – now, I have to be 1) On the guest list, 2) In the booth, and preferably 3) Playing. Sad, but true. I also used to be a promoter, so maybe that’s it
  8. You don’t like listening to music in private –  Car? Windows open. House? Ditto. Bedroom? Bedroom door open. Camping? Turn it up a bit louder and see if the “neighbours” approve – it may turn into a party, after all! Whatever the reason, music is to be shared – and your choice is what will get everyone else into it to. Why wouldn’t you try and involved other people? Music listened to alone is music wasted. (I think that’s why I’ve never got on with personal headphones, from the Walkman to the Discman to white earbuds and smartphone music – what’s the point if nobody else can hear?)
  9. You’re always the first to notice when the music loops in a public place – Restaurant, gym, kids’ trampoline park, bloody anywhere – as soon as that playlist or CD changer (yeah, there are still loads of them out there) commits the cardinal sin of looping back to the start, you’re right there getting properly wound up. How could whoever put the music on be so LAZY? Surely they notice this stuff? News, dude – 50% of the population simply don’t. (And they call us their weird ones…)
  10. In any new place, the first thing you do is sort the music – New house? Setting up some kind of sound system while you unpack is the primary objective – definitely before the kettle. Same with a hotel room, a day out in the country, whatever. No music = we’ve not arrived/started/got going yet. Music always comes first, no exceptions
  11. You’re always loitering near the music source at impromptu parties, just waiting – Assuming you didn’t put the music on in the first place, y’know, by default (and assuming you didn’t race home to get some music ‘cos some dimwit didn’t think about it), you’re there, quietly sussing out the required leads, how they’ve got the iPod plugged into that old stereo system, and what individual was responsible for putting the music that’s currently playing on. Because when it finished, you’re going to be swooping like a hawk, your iPhone ready, in airplane mode (schoolboy error to forget that bit) and taking over. Hey, you’re the DJ in your crowd of friends, and it’s a public service you’re offering after all…
  12. When you buy a new car, the most important consideration is the sound system – It could be a rust bucket with four bald tyres, weeks left before being condemned, and a belching, hyper-unreliable engine, but hey, if the audio is sweet, you’re able to overlook pretty much anything. After all, no music = we’re not really driving at all – right?

Honestly? This list has taken as long as it took me to type it – I thought about NONE of these, just poured them out. I am sure there are LOADS more, and I am sure you have your own habits too, but hell, we can be weird sometimes, right? Or is it everyone else who’s weird? 🙂

Fact is, as I said at the start, if you’ve nodded along throughout this piece, then hey, you’re a DJ. But if you’re NOT a DJ, and you’ve nodded along – get started!

• Wanna get started with the biggest DJ school in the world (that’s us, by the way)? Then head to our courses page and hook yourself up with some training – scratch that itch!

Let me know your weird habits below – can’t wait to see what you get up to in the name of DJing!

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