How To DJ Better by Picking Great Tracks
I remember a while back when vinyl was the dominant format in DJing, I went “record shopping” at the local record store in downtown Toronto.
This friend of mine was not really a DJ but was pretty well off and just did it for the fun of it.
He would go to the record shop and just tell the DJ behind the counter Yo, give me the new releases. And the DJ would go and get about 15 – 20 records or so, go to the cash and blindly pay trusting that the DJ choose some hot tracks.
Honestly, I know he was well off and everything but like 20 records at about 16 dollars a shot, that more than $300 … Just casually record shopping.
He would listen and play a few of them when we got back to my place, (and in my opinion), most of the records were duds, not even warm up material if you know what I mean.
Just goes to show not only do you have to know how to play the music, you also have to know how to pick the music.
I know it might be challenging as you might be starting out.
But here are a few tips to get you started picking the right tracks;
· For the first few weeks listen to your favorite DJs latest sets.
· Go to your favorite DJ download portal and look for that DJs latest top 10
· Put it in your basket to buy later (don’t buy it yet)
· Pay close attention to the artists on that top 10
· Search for those artists’ top 10
· Put those top 10’s in your basket (don’t buy yet)
· You should have about 30 tracks in your basket
· Go through each track one by one and choose the tracks that you like.
· I usually pick 10, and make my own top 10, does not have to be 10!, pick as many as you like
· Once you have the tracks you like make sure that they have the same vibe, OR, make sure you pick tracks that go together (have the same feel)
If you don’t understand, what I mean by feel, I suggest you go to the night club that you like, and listen for the tracks that you like, AND this is very important, look to see what time it is when the type of tracks that you like are being played.
You will notice that killer tracks are played peak time, when everyone is there and “in the zone”.
Something important to remember when picking tracks is that it is easy to just pick the hottest tracks. What happens if you are asked to play on a patio at 7 – 10 PM, are you gonna play those hottest hardest tracks??? I think not.
I usually make a mental note to myself when selecting tracks by ranking them 1 2, or 3. 1 is for tracks beginning of the night, 2 is for tracks middle of the night and when the night is dying down, and three is for the peak time bombs (the best tracks).
And most importantly of all, when you do buy the tracks make sure you BUY THE TRACKS! Don’t download for free.
Do this for about 4 weeks, and you will start to recognize artists who you didn’t know before and start to even expand your horizons a little bit 🙂
After some time you will be a set building expert knowing how good a track is just by skimming through it only a few seconds.
To Your Success,
(aka DJ Ronstar)
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