Sure, learning how to DJ is about the music at its heart. But the real job of a DJ, any DJ, is to keep the crowd happy and making sure they’re having fun.
The question then, is how do you do that? After all, one person can’t really make or break a party…can they?
The short answer is ‘yes’. But don’t worry because there are things you will learn as a DJ to keep the crowd engaged in the party, whether it’s a wedding, bar mitzvah, prom or New Years Eve party at the biggest club in town. If becoming an awesome DJ is your goal, keep reading to learn how you can become the DJ that everyone wants to hire!
DJ Tip #1 – Know Your Equipment
The first thing any really good DJ must do is be very familiar with your DJ equipment. Chances are good that if you’re already getting paid gigs, you own your equipment and have been working with it for awhile. If however you rent your DJ equipment before each gig, you should get it at least 1 day in advance to make sure you know where all the knobs, buttons and jog wheels are located and what they do.
If you know you’re equipment you decrease the chances of dead air, which can really kill the mood of any party. If you’re nervous, do a complete run through of your party lists just to make sure you don’t make any mistakes. For a new DJ, equipment failures can deliver a devastating blow to your confidence.
DJ Tip #2 – Multiple Play Lists
Really good DJs, much like Boy Scouts are always prepared for any event. Just because you’ve been hired to play a specific type of music doesn’t mean that one generic playlist will do the job sufficiently. As a rule, no matter how long you’ve been DJing there will always be instances in which the crowd does not respond to a certain list.
What to do?
Always have several different party play lists on hand to keep the crowd happy. If the crowd is happy, the club owner, party promoter or paying customer will always be happy. If you play dance music, house, electronica or whatever, make up a few different play lists—all of which should include party staples—that you can quickly change out if you notice very few people on the dance floor.
Don’t assume that because you’re a musical genius every crowd will love your sets.
DJ Tip #3 – Be The Life Of The Party
It is your job as the DJ to keep the party going, which means you should take on the role as the life of the party. This doesn’t mean you should be down on the dance floor knockin’ back shots with the crowd, but it does mean you should take that mic and make the party fun for everyone.
Introduce a few songs and encourage people to “get their butts on the dance floor”. If you’re having fun up in your DJ booth, the people on the dance floor will want to be having as much, or more, fun than the person playing the music.
DJ Tip #4 – Do Play Requests
One of the worst mistakes you can make as a DJ is to ignore or not accept requests. When people are out having a good time, they want to hear songs that remind them of the last time they were together, which you have the power to do for them. This doesn’t mean that you have to take requests all night, but then again it isn’t as if everyone at the party will make a request.
Different party venues tend to have more or less requests. Weddings and school dances for example are more likely to have more requests than a dance club, so this is where it pays to know your audience. If you hate requests, simply make an effort to have those most requested tunes in your play list and announce the song to everyone knows what’s coming.
BONUS TIP: Know the crowd you’re playing for (i.e. wedding crowd, teenagers, old people etc…) and tailor your play lists to suit them and you can reduce the number of requests.
DJ Tip #5 – Engage The Crowd
If you truly want to become a really good DJ then you have to become comfortable speaking to large crowds so that you can get them involved. This can come in the form of encouraging them to dance, playing special requests and dedications with a special DJ flair, and even adding time honored traditions such as ladies choice, couples only or singles only dances.
By keeping the crowd engaged in the party you can make sure that everyone is having a good time, which means you have done a damned good job! Think of each party as your party, therefore your responsibility to make sure a good time is had by all.
With that mindset you will be the best DJ you can be and your crowds will leave the party tired and ready to hit the bed…not another party.
I hope I helped you learn how to become a really good DJ. 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 GOOD disk jockey!
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