Home Forums The DJ Booth Separating Good from Great

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  • #2671
    pilotmike327
    Member

    This club I went to last night had alternating DJ’s (3 of them). All of them kept the floor moving and the booty’s grooving. However, one the the DJ’s (who was actually the one who played the least) was fantabulous. Drops were eargasmic, he knew how long to hold the current track before dropping, selection of tracks were on point, and just cutting, sampling, and looping different tracks onto the current live track was executed professionally.

    My question is: What separates the good ones from the great ones? I feel like some things are just felt, no amount of practice can change that. Either you feel it or you don’t. Sure at first when you’re starting out your main focus is not to trainwreck but once you’ve got that down and you’re mixing smoothly, your brain shifts to a whole different style of thinking. The technique itself becomes second-nature and your goal is “how do I make this track sound even better?”

    I know this post seems rather odd, but it’s more of a reflecting journal than anything else. The more I go out and listen to DJ’s, the more I realize just how much work goes behind what they do. “It’s just spinnin’ other people’s records” is the biggest understatement…..ever.

    #2675
    Gadabout
    Member

    pilotmike327, post: 2661 wrote: I feel like some things are just felt, no amount of practice can change that. Either you feel it or you don’t. Sure at first when you’re starting out your main focus is not to trainwreck but once you’ve got that down and you’re mixing smoothly, your brain shifts to a whole different style of thinking. The technique itself becomes second-nature and your goal is “how do I make this track sound even better?”

    I couldn’t have put it better myself. Ima answer this with Your answer :p

    IMO, Good DJs stick to the basics, ‘this beatmatches with this’ ‘the intro to this house tune mixes well with the outro of that house tune’ ..etc… A good DJ Thinks up the basics, ‘128bpm….ok now i need another 128bpm tune’
    a great DJ thinks outside the box. ‘How would i mix these two songs in a studio’ ‘how can i make these two tracks sound like they are Ment to be mixed this way’

    Thoughts? =D

    #2680
    pilotmike327
    Member

    Exactly! I thinks it’s when you are comfortable and confident with your mixing (which can be done in your bedroom) that you move onto the real art behind it all and basically create new tracks from old. I feel like this happens once you’re actually out playing in front of a crowd, feed off that energy, deliver out an even more energetic mix. The cycle continues until every one’s ears detach from their heads and chain themselves to the DJ gear.

    #2682

    I was told that a Good DJ reacts to the crowd and feeds into their vibe.
    A Great DJ controls the crowd getting them to feed into his/her vibe.
    Great examples Larry Levan and Ron Hardy.

    #2708
    Emma Partnow
    Member

    I think that the ‘Distance’ between a ‘Good DJ’ and a ‘Great DJ’ is Very Large;
    As if Depicted in a Series of Loops in a Chain;

    I think a ‘Great DJ’ is a person who can be handed 10 Tracks (of Varying Genres and BPM); and Mix them Seamlessly;
    However; some may see Armin Van Buuren as the ‘Top Link’ in the Chain; where for me he does Nothing;
    If he were to Mix a Jazz Funk Set on the other hand I may look at him Differently;
    There is No Doubt that there have been ‘Greats’ such as Jeff Mills; but I Feel that a Range Of Genres have to be Mastered before anyone can be Considered as ‘Great’;
    But that is just my ‘Personal Opinion’; and of course this Opens Up another Avenue to this Thread;
    ‘People’ have ‘Opinions’ on ‘Who Is Great’; but does that ‘Make That DJ Great’;
    Tiesto and Van Buuren could Probably (and Probably Do) Fill the Biggest Stadiums in the World; and they have a ‘Massive Fan Base’; but ‘Why’; the Answer is their ‘Brand’ (as with David Beckham); but that doesn’t make them ‘Great’ or even ‘Good DJ’s’; (I Love McDonalds because I have seen that Big Yellow Sign since I was a Young Child); but for Nutrition the Food is Very Likely to be Awful;
    The General Public become ‘Conditioned’ into Believing/Brainwashed that ‘This is Good’; and ‘This is Great’;

    I Understand that I have put myself ‘Out There’ to be Attacked with this Post;
    But; my Honest Feelings about the Matter; are these;
    If You Think You Are Great; You Are Great 😎

    #2712
    Adam Sharizman
    Participant

    djsubculture, post: 2672 wrote: I was told that a Good DJ reacts to the crowd and feeds into their vibe.
    A Great DJ controls the crowd getting them to feed into his/her vibe.
    Great examples Larry Levan and Ron Hardy.

    Agreed. Definitely true

    #2714

    Emma Partnow, post: 2698 wrote:
    If You Think You Are Great; You Are Great 😎

    In that case, I am as great as Ron Hardy! 😎 (ducking)

    #2778
    U31
    Member

    Nail on the head Emma, There is a blog somewhere out there in Interweb land, where they invite DJ’s renown as masters in their chosen field, and ask them to come up with a set totally from leftfeild – Hardcore DJ’s doing 80’s new wave sets, Trance DJ doing funk etc etc… ill rack me brains and see if i can remember the address but i’m promising nowt!

    #2823
    Phil Morse
    Keymaster

    U31, post: 2768 wrote: Nail on the head Emma, There is a blog somewhere out there in Interweb land, where they invite DJ’s renown as masters in their chosen field, and ask them to come up with a set totally from leftfeild – Hardcore DJ’s doing 80’s new wave sets, Trance DJ doing funk etc etc… ill rack me brains and see if i can remember the address but i’m promising nowt!

    I’d love to know that site.

    #2832
    U31
    Member

    Just for you Phil… Mwahaah

    http://differentgenre.blogspot.com/

    #2835
    U31
    Member

    Another good resource / blog is Stu Robinsons http://www.cosmicboogie.co.uk
    But i’m biased because Stu is a good mate of one of the best and most modest DJ’s im proud to be a friend of, Adam W (Wilson) If you pop over there look for Adams mix in the guest section..

    #2848
    Emma Partnow
    Member

    U31, post: 2822 wrote: Just for you Phil… Mwahaah

    http://differentgenre.blogspot.com/

    I have this Page Open now my Friend 🙂
    I wonder what I May Find 🙂

    Edit:
    Wow! – Justin Robertson – Giles Peterson – Goldie – and this is just on the Front Page 😎

    #2850
    U31
    Member

    Gold…. Pure gold…. 😀

    #2904
    Phil Morse
    Keymaster

    U31, post: 2822 wrote: Just for you Phil… Mwahaah

    http://differentgenre.blogspot.com/

    Listening to the Joy Orbison downtempo mix now – nice one!

    #2952

    U31, post: 2822 wrote: Just for you Phil… Mwahaah

    http://differentgenre.blogspot.com/

    This is fantastic!

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