Every year we round up our most popular articles for the last 365 days, in case you missed them. These are the “must-read” pieces that have caused the most discussion among our members, as well as pieces that have attracted the most attention from the rest of the web. Check them out and see if your favourites this year made the list!
2014’s Most Popular
1. The 4 Types Of DJ (And Why You Should Only Take Advice From One Of Them)
We’ve all been on the receiving end of advice from other DJs at one point or another, telling us to “start doing this” or to” stop doing that”. As doe-eyed beginners, we tend to take all that information in, even the advice that may be damaging to our career, perception of DJing, and outlook on the state of dance music. Ideally, we should consciously filter pieces of advice given to us, and take heed only of those solicited by a certain type of DJ. Which one? Read on to find out…
Read the full article: The 4 Types Of DJ (And Why You Should Only Take Advice From One Of Them)
2. Is This The End Of SoundCloud For DJs?
SoundCloud was in the front page of every DJ news site sporadically throughout 2014, initially because of a controversial policy that enabled major labels to take down hosted mixes without permission or advising the uploader. DJs who’ve used the service for years decried the clampdown, with many looking to other music streaming services to play host to their radio shows and mixtapes. Later on, SoundCloud made headlines again because it was in talks with the last three major record labels still in existence (Sony, Universal, Warner Music Group), and for its plan to introduce an ad-based system that would generate cash for DJs who have content on SoundCloud.
The latest is that it has forged a licensing deal with Warner Music Group. 2015 will be proving grounds for the company, as DJs have become increasingly wary of its policies and stand on mixtapes.
Read the full article: Is This The End Of SoundCloud For DJs?
3. My DJ Gig From Hell… & The Priceless Lesson I Learned
You know what they say: It’s not the gear, it’s the DJ! But how many of us actually take this to heart when it comes to our own DJ career? After all, who wouldn’t want to be DJing behind the “latest and greatest” controller to come fresh out the NI / Pioneer / Reloop oven? This article resonated with so many of you maybe because we’re all a little bit (not a little for some!) afflicted with Gear Acquisition Syndrome, but at the end of the day we all know that once we’ve bought that shiny new widget, an even shinier one already looms on the horizon.
A lesson on only buying when truly necessary, learned the hard way: After all, the only person in the club who really cares about what gear’s being used is probably you!
Read the full article: My DJ Gig From Hell… & The Priceless Lesson I Learned
4. 5 Reasons Why DJs Should Make Their Own Edits
If last year didn’t make it any more apparent, 2014 saw large scale festivals, sold out club dates, and month-long Ibiza residencies to be the realm of the DJ/producer. Modern digital DJing is headed towards that hybridisation of “person behind the decks” and “person behind the screen”; a performer who is able to entertain a massive audience on one hand while having the studio chops and technical knowledge necessary to craft a production on the other.
For many of us, the most practical first step and path of least resistance towards this milestone is to create DJ edits, using relatively low cost or even free software. This article outlined a handful of practical reasons why you should be making edits on a regular basis, maybe even as often as you download and add new music to your DJ library.
Read the full article: 5 Reasons Why DJs Should Make Their Own Edits
5. Why You’ve Nothing To Fear From EDM Parodies Like This One
EDM’s overwhelming popularity in recent years is just unavoidable: There’s just too much attention, status, and money involved for it to not become notoriously ubiquitous. While most anyone would agree that a boatload of cash is awesome, what isn’t awesome is that because of all of these excesses, EDM is starting to become a caricature of itself, case in point the Saturday Night Live “Davincii” skit, among others.
Now that the sound and scene has gone through its paces (although with no signs of slowing down just yet), it can be quite disheartening to think that today’s mainstream image of a DJ is a “guy pressing a button in front of a large crowd with his hands in the air jumping up and down when he’s not throwing cake”. Rest assured, if your heart for music is in the right place (and not primarily in your bank account), these stereotypes got nothing on ya, as you’ll find out here.
Read the full article: Why You’ve Nothing To Fear From EDM Parodies Like This One
6. 7 Lessons For Digital DJs From The Days Of Vinyl
Did we really have things better “back then”? That’s debatable, but it would be foolish to assume that lessons from the past should be junked just because we’ve traded up (or down, depending on how much of a purist you are) our DJ kit from a pair of Technics 1200s. Though vinyl is a niche format today, a lot of things that were knowledge du jour in the days of disco and acid house should be carried over to digital, despite the generation gap in technology and listening habits.
A lot of us in this site started either on CDJs or a DJ controller, so when this trove of wisdom from ages past was published, it naturally struck a chord, and along with it came the realisation that no matter how much things change, some things will always stay the same.
Read the full article: 7 Lessons For Digital DJs From The Days Of Vinyl
7. 5 Highly Useful DJ Tools (That Have Nothing To Do With Music)
Not all your spends have to be toward a new piece of DJ kit; round out your performance experience with a few auxiliary items that you can get on the cheap like a digital still camera and some party lights. It’s always tempting to save up for the next big thing in DJing, but don’t forget about the other stuff that’s easily neglected like ear plugs, a sound level meter app (shoutout to DJ Vintage, he shared a great one in the comments), and even an LED torch!
Read the full article: 5 Highly Useful DJ Tools (That Have Nothing To Do With Music)
8. Scratching On Controllers: 5 Myths Busted
Who says you can’t scratch properly on DJ controllers? When Steve Canueto pointed out the untruths about controllers not being scratch-worthy, a lot of us chimed in and agreed that though the scratch experience is different on tiny jogwheels, it nonetheless can be done. What’s interesting here is the way we reacted as a community to this piece: Some said they’re perfectly fine scratching on a small digital controller, while a handful expressed their preference for scratching with vinyl on a DVS and some turntables, which is perfectly fine.
Digital DJ Tips is always about learning to enjoy the experience of DJing using whatever digital gear you prefer, and in my opinion that’s what makes our online community a unique one: We’re not puffing our chests in an attempt to one up each other or brag about our skills with some sick routine, we’re all here to help each other get better at what she/he is doing on his/her own digital DJ device, whatever that piece of kit may be.
Read the full article: Scratching On Controllers: 5 Myths Busted
What article on the site did you find most useful this year? What topics would you like us to cover in 2015 as well as the usual news and reviews? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.