Over To You: How Do I Mix With Acapellas On A Two-Deck Controller?

Phil Morse | Founder & Tutor
Read time: 2 mins
Last updated 7 November, 2017

Acapellas have long been used by DJs to transition between tracks, but what’s the best way of doing so on a controller with only two decks, asks our reader…

Digital DJ Masterclass owner Sushil writes: “I having hard time trying to use an acapella to transition between two tracks with my Traktor Kontrol S2, because of course the controller only has two decks so I can’t use a third deck for the acapella like you might on a four-deck controller. I tried using the Remix Decks but found it far from straightforward. Please could you give me some suggestions for how to acapella mix with a two-deck controller either using the Remix Decks or some other way?”

Digital DJ Tips says:

Mixing acapellas is not something we can teach in a quick answer here (indeed, we’ve got a whole course about it – the Acapella Mixing Masterclass) but I can give you some tips, and then throw it open to the readers for more ideas.

Firstly, practise quickly changing the outgoing tune for the incoming one on the same deck. If you do this at the right point, a few seconds of silence while the acapella is playing away is no bad thing. This is how we used to do it back in the “two Technics” days and it can add lots of drama to your set.

Secondly, don’t let the Remix Decks confuse you. Using say a 30-second acapella loop or chorus on one of the sample slots, you can approximate a third deck, and as long as you beatgrid the acapella correctly (the tricky part, but then again you’d need to do this anyway if you’re usaing sync), it’ll be easy to perform.

Finally, you could always experiment with a long delay effect to effectively loop a section of an acapella while you switch tunes; although this isn’t something I’ve ever experimented with myself, I’ve seen it done to great effect.

So, over to you: How do you use acapellas of transitions in your DJ software without resorting to a third deck? Any ideas or developments of my ideas that you can share with Sushil below would be great ly appreciated!

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