GETTING started as a DJ has never been easier. Due to the abundance of controllers, decks, and music material, you can begin DJing straight away. As soon as you’ve made progress, you can improve your knowledge, abilities, and repertoire as you go.
Not only that, but the starting costs required today are far lower than they were previously. Whether you want to begin with CDJs, controllers, or DJing software, the current setup costs make DJing accessible to anyone.
Learning to DJ involves developing the ability to balance your own musical expressions with the preferences of an audience. It requires being alert, responsive, and creative, and goes beyond merely combining songs or matching beats.
Contrary to popular belief, learning to DJ is not an easy path to instant success. Everything that we love and are enthusiastic about requires effort, persistence, and time. Well, starting out is not difficult. Being exceptional and standing out, however, is challenging.
Here are the five best ways to become a DJ:
1. Study some basic DJing skills
Thanks to the wonders of the internet, you can teach yourself some basic DJ skills.
Here are a few key points that might be a good place to start:
Beatmatching: The goal of beatmatching is to sync up two tracks so that they play at the same tempo (the rate at which the song is playing) and phase (so that their beats are synced up).
Phrasing: Phrasing is the process of combining your tracks at intervals that make sense to you.
Gain Control: This aspect of the factor focuses on adjusting the volume in a variety of different ways.
EQing: Equalizing (EQ) is the act of boosting or cutting frequencies so that multiple audio tracks blend nicely.
2. Explore and develop your skills using DJ software
Rekordbox is Pioneer’s music management platform for DJs. It can be used to import music, make playlists, establish cue points, and perform any other preliminary tasks. By using Export Mode, you can download that library to a USB drive and play it on equipment like a Pioneer CDJ.
Everything is completely free. However, in order to access extra features like cloud sync, DVS support, and Performance Mode on more hardware, they offer a subscription-based service.
Serato is among the most stable and reliable DJ software currently available. They work with other hardware manufacturers (such as Rane, Pioneer DJ, Reloop, Roland, etc.) to ensure smooth operation and seamless integration with no setup.
Serato DJ Lite is a free, dependable, and user-friendly DJ software for mixing in two channels. Because of “Practise Mode”, you don’t even need any hardware to begin DJing. If you decide to upgrade later, the process is simple.
3. Track recording and mixing
Once you’ve mastered the fundamentals, you can begin mixing and recording your own tracks. Those who DJ with a laptop and DJ controller have it easy, as most of the DJ software allows you to record your set with only a click of a button.
Alternatively, you could use free software such as Garageband or Audacity to record directly from your Record Out ports into a computer’s audio input.
A bedroom mix is not the same as performing in front of an audience. Some skills that are important in a live setting – such as crowd reading – do not apply when recording a personal mix.
However, you can take advantage of this opportunity to consider telling a story with your set. Consider your starting point, your destination, and the route you want to take to get there. Maybe you can play out the scenario in your head where you are standing in front of a crowd.
As your library of songs and sound effects grows, you can also find copyright-free music on websites like Bensound, Free Music Archive, or Soundstripe.
4. Make your name known as a DJ
As a starting point, you can make some mixtapes, record your mixes, and give them out to your friends, and family. Ask them for feedback and opinion, and also figure out where you’re making mistakes.
Uploading your mixes is the best way to get them heard by a wider audience. You could try Mixcloud or turn it into a video and upload it to YouTube. Once it’s on YouTube, look for music-related groups on Facebook, Reddit, and other websites and place the link there.
Prior to contacting any venues, make sure you are confident enough to enter a club and mix for at least an hour without making any mistakes. Be ready for this and make sure your mixing is on point. Promoters for club owners might ask you to demonstrate your suitability for playing at their venue before they take the risk of letting you perform live.
5. Continue practising to become a better DJ
DJing entails more than simply mixing music. Many DJs lose sight of the fact that they are there to entertain the audience. These people have paid good money to see them, so getting it right is critical.
As a result, in order to become a DJ, you must also learn how to read a crowd. This is an important skill in DJing that should not be overlooked. If you get it wrong, you’ll be clearing dance floors before the first song is over.