1. Don't Expect Instant Success
Although learning how to DJ now is getting easier with all the options and best equipment available at our finger tips, what you must also keep in mind is that it will take time from where you are at now to where you want to go. Never mind the pessimistic people that say that all DJ’s do now is push a button etc. DJing is an art form and still takes years to build up a brand, a sound, a music collection, and an image you wish to represent and not to mention your skill set. There is also the fact that it takes time to build a following and get your name out there, if you wish to play gigs too. It also takes years of experience to know how read a crowd and know what type of music you need to play in your set in order to satisfy and entertain a crowd.
2. The Importance Of Relationships
This could very well be the most important topic of the article - your relationships. You could have all of the above and be terrible at learning how to deal with people. This is vital to your success as a DJ. As the old saying goes, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know”. I know it’s an old cliché, but if we want to take our DJ career to the next level we need to step out of the bedroom and learn how to approach people in the right manner, without coming across like a person who is either arrogant, stuck up or completely shy. For me, I struggled with the whole shy part and it didn't do me any favours for many years when trying to get gigs, and set me back perhaps some years. You need to step out of your comfort zones and start approaching or collaborating with people to take it to the next level. Make as many friends and support as many other people as possible, DJ’s, Event organisers, Club managers, promoters and most importantly of all, the patrons. Just remember, what goes around comes around so if you're not giving any support, don't expect to get support back anytime soon.
3. Expect Frustration When Finding Music
There is an absolute abundance of music available today, and getting released at a higher rate than ever. With the decline of vinyl records and the rise of digital websites such as beatport.com and trackitdown.net and now spotify.com, it has become easier for producers to get their music released. It has made it easier for even the average joe producer to come along and start their own label, if he or she has trouble getting a track signed. Not to say that there is anything wrong with this, although it can often mean that the quality of tracks being released can sometimes not be to a high industry standard. This has left the market open to being flooded with under quality music, making it even harder to find those hidden gems. I think it’s a good thing to be picky when finding music, as you will end up finding more quality of quantity of music - those hidden gems that you want to share and showcase to your friends like they are your own. We all want the best, but do expect to put in the time finding the right tunes for you. This in my opinion is the most time consuming part of being a DJ.
These are just 3 of the key areas that can be commonly overlooked when starting out as a DJ. The main thing to take away is to be patient, persistent and get out there and have fun. Don't hold back, it can be an exciting hobby or even career - it really is what you make of it. You can not only have a great time as a DJ, but you can make some life long friends and have some memorable experiences along the way.