DJ Lessons Part IV: The Process

Are You Wasting Your Precious DJ Time?


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Every DJ has a process. The ways in which he or she sets about performing basic DJ tasks. Anyone that has ever had a DJ mentor knows just how easy it is to adopt someone else’s process as your own. Whether or not it is the most efficient or easiest way for you, we often do what we see first. But the truth is that among many of the DJ lessons you’ll learn throughout your career, figuring out your own process will be the most difficult.

Many of the things you’ll do as a DJ will become second nature to you, but until that time you will make a lot of mistakes which means correcting a lot of mistakes. Don’t worry because today I’m going to give you a quick rundown of some of processes you need to perfect in order make your work day more efficient.

Just because you’re dealing with music doesn’t mean you aren’t working. When you have a set way to do things you’ll find you have more time to dedicate to the more important parts of being a DJ.

Music Quality

We’ve already talked a bit about securing your DJ music but we haven’t spent much time talking about how you choose your music. I’m sure you have sources you favor—we all do—but are those sources giving you the best quality music possible?

It is vitally important that you get good quality audio files because if you start with crap quality, your mix or mashup can only go down from there. This is especially true if you’re getting unverified rips from torrent sites. While they are free, you should be listening to them before adding them to your DJ library. The last DJ lesson you want to learn the hard way is what a crappy mp3 sounds like through big club speakers.

So part of your process when checking out music quality should be more than listening; you will also need to look at the waveform. You may need to get some type of software to do it, but looking at it will let you see if the file has been changed or degraded through compression.

Social Media

While it would be great if you could attend to your DJ social media the same as you would your personal accounts, the fact is doing that could take you all day. By the time you’ve read through the thousands of comments and shared items you’ll have wasted hours. So you need a logical process to approach your DJ networking efficiently.

Start with your website and make a plan about what you need to respond to and what you can let go. If you waste time trying to respond to every single comment and private message, you should be prepared to set aside one whole day to commit to your followers.

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In the real world you should plan to spend about 1 hour, a few times each week on your social media. Update your website calendar, promote events and upcoming releases. Then head to social media and schedule your posts for a few days at a time. You can always add in photos or sound bites that happen throughout the week, but scheduling it will allow you to keep in touch without being tied to your phone or computer every single day.

Gig Prep

One of the most important parts of your life where you will need a hard and fast process is getting ready for gigs. My first few DJ gigs I tried to wing it and ended up forgetting plenty of essential items. If you are new to DJing I suggest you make a list on your phone and check it off as it goes into your bag and into your car before every gig.

It will be up to you to figure out what exactly your process is, but trust me when I tell you this is one of those DJ lessons you do not want to learn the hard way. Forgetting cords, cables, USBs or back up music will not only make you look bad to the promoter or owner that hired you but it will obliterate your confidence when those judgmental clubbers start giving you the evil eye.

Start your list with essential and backup equipment then move on to necessary items like water, snacks and a flashlight. Check it and then double check it. After a few gigs you’ll notice you can put together your gig kit without even consulting the list.

If you’re serious about being a professional DJ then you will need a process for pretty much everything. Being a musician doesn’t mean rolling out of bed at the crack of noon; it means scheduling your day so you can get everything done you need to. You’ll need to always be trying to get gigs booked, attend industry events, hit the clubs a few nights a week and even time to work on your own music.

Your days will be busy, but not overly so if you schedule it at have efficient processes. This is one DJ lesson you’ll want to take to heart if you don’t want to put in 12 hour days and get nothing done.

I hope my DJ lessons helped you make your day more productive. Email in the box below to get access to Free video DJ lessons that will answer all of your questions on how to become a disk jockey!

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