Getting on the mic during a gig doesn’t come naturally to a lot of of DJs, myself included. At the same time, it’s a skill that is becoming the norm and many crowds expect the DJ to get on the microphone.
So while it can be intimidating to get on the mic and address the crowd, I’d like to share a few tips that have helped me to become more comfortable on the mic, in the hope that they’ll help you too. If you’re a DJ who’s always wondered how to use a microphone (or how to get over your fear), try these tips…
3 Microphone Tips
1. Learn a few key phrases
The tip that got me comfortable on the microphone the fastest was focusing on learning just a few phrases at first. A big fear for many DJs is not knowing what to say or saying the wrong thing on the microphone. By learning and becoming comfortable with one phrase at a time, you will slowly build up confidence.
Start with phrases that have been proven over time to work in many different situations. Phrases such as “How is everyone doing tonight?” and “Everybody make some noise!” are things that many crowds expect to hear during the course of the night and are easy ones to start with.
Start with one phrase and become comfortable with it. Then, once you can say that phrase without thinking twice, it’s time to add another one. The longer you continue this process the more comfortable you will become on the microphone with a wider variety of phrases.
Read this next: 4 Times When DJs Still Need To Use The Microphone
2. Learn to consider your audience type
Once you have a handful of phrases that you’re comfortable with, the next step is knowing when and who to say them to. Just like song selection, learning which phrases work best in front of which type of audiences is one of the keys to success on the microphone.
Things you would say in front of a club crowd will be very different to what you might say in front of a corporate event crowd. Keeping this in mind is key to being successful on the microphone. Just being aware that there is a difference will be enough to get you on the right track.
Another thing to keep in mind is HOW you say each phrase. The type of energy you may give to a wedding crowd will be very different from how you may say the same phrase in front of a small pub or lounge. While this will come over time, this is something you will want to keep in mind every time you get on the mic.
3. Practise, practise, practise
Much like every other aspect of DJing, the best way to get better faster is to practise. While the other two tips can help you slowly overcome your fear, you have to consciously make the choice to brush your fear aside and pick up that mic and actually say something.
The more reps you get turning on that microphone having had the courage to say something, the more likely you will be willing to do it the next time. Keep at it, just like learning to beatmix: The more time you put into it, the faster it will become second nature.
You don’t need to be at gigs to practise: You can do so at home, with a “pretend” mic! Or record yourself on your smartphone, video or audio, and listen back.
At gigs, don’t leave it too long before you speak. The longer you leave it before you get on the mic for the first time, the harder it will get. So get on the mic at the first opportunity, and get past that moment…
Nail the basics of DJing: DJing Made Easy
It took me years to get over my fear of the microphone. As DJing has evolved and using the microphone has become more common, I found I had no other choice but to bite the bullet and pick up the mic.
While it was nerve-wracking at first, using these tips really helped me to become more comfortable. Now it’s second nature for me to pick up the microphone, and I’m sure after utilising these tips and getting some practice in, it will become second nature for you too.