I AM A DJ

IMG_2005I am a DJ

I am not going down my resume, you can look into to my other blogs to find that out, because this blog is not about that.  I thought about YOUTUBING this but I knew that I would end up raging and yelling.  Doing that, I think that I would get no point across. SO instead I will do it the old fashion way and write about it; which means that I probably will not get a lot of people reading it because, people do not read anymore. Still, whatever.

In today’s generation and society i feel that that DJ is disrespected.  Everyone thinks that they can be a DJ and they think that the things that we do is easy.  There are people that download an app and all the sudden think that they can do the things that we do.  Just because they know the name of some songs, they think that they can DJ.  Sure, if that is the case why don’t you come and over and show me your DJ skillz.

DJing is a craft that we practice and work hard on.  I  know that before it was something that we love to do because of music, it does not mean that we do it for free.  When you see/hear the DJ at the club, radio, internet, where ever, do you think that he/she just woke up picked some songs from iTunes and then all the sudden make “magic”?  First things first we spend a lot of hours and time listening to everything and from that we actually decided what is good or not for OUR style for the set.  And from that, in our head he hear what would be good for the set.  I love music and I think about music and beats all the time in my head.

YES, we love doing what we do, but since when is anything free?  When I get crap like, “Can you DJ my party for free?  I’ll hook you up with alcohol.”  Sorry I can buy my own beer.  Even its not “free” (because I think that people know that I don’t do anything for free) having a few bucks is just a little spit in my face.  You know how much money I spend on the music alone?  You know how much my Rane 62 is worth?  You know how much a pair of Technics MKII are worth?  You know know how much my needles cost? etc.  I do not go out with a iPad or something like that.  I have professional equipment and I will act like a professional with you; respect me as a professional.  I am not a KID off the street.  YES I graduated high school, wait I take that make YES I GRADUATED FROM MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY AND UNIVERSITY OF SAN FRANCISCO WITH A B.A.’s not included with other training classes from other schools or what not.

“Well i know this kid in the street that will do it for X dollars.”  If that is the case then why are you calling/emailing me?  Sorry, I am just like you trying to make money, to feed myself, to pay bills, etc.  Oh, you are a professional and you work with a salary?  Guess what SO AM I (without a salary though).

Behind the cameras or stream, I am practicing.  I am listening.  I am downloading music, FOR YOU.  You think that Skrillex, DJ Qbert, DJ CRAZE, etc just wake up and within a few minutes make a million dollar DJ set or song?  There are FAKE DJs out there like Paris Hilton that do not do ANYTHING but its YOU (the people) that are stupid enough to spend money to see her.  You spend your dollars to see or hear FAKE DJs just because they have a FAMOUS NAME.  That’s your problem not mine.

When I have MOBILE Gigs, you think that all the equipment and speakers and lights just appear within a snap of a figure?  Someone has to load up the car.  Someone has to drive to the venue.  Someone has to unload and set up all that stuff.  Then at the end has to do all the stuff backwards.  I do not have a TEAM of people to ship it, set up, and then break it down at the end.  I wish that I was making that much money to do that.

For serious DJs;  Djing is not a game.  Its not something that you do for fun.  Its not for kicks.

for us; ITS OUR LIFE

 

Why do I DJ?

I was in high school, and DJing was a new thing.  I always liked music.  I would say that I am a music fan.  I am not stuck with one type of music too.  I like that I hear.  There are times when would rock some hip hop and then next thing you know I would be chilling with some classical music.  Music is art.

So when I listened to a mixtape for the first time I thought that it was so cool.  I was asking questions like how can you have a 30 mins tape and the music is consitant?  They told me that you have to mix that.  From that point on I was hooked.  wondering how to mix and be a DJ and everything like that.  I would be up late at night at WGCI (the first time when a radio would have DJ mixtapes) and then later on B96.  Listening to legends like Bad Boy Bill and Julian Jumpin’ Perez.  I thought that all that mixing and DJing thing was awesome.  I had friends that would DJ and mix and I would ask them their mixtapes all the time.  Listening to mixtapes, mostly house(Chicago is the home of House music) and of course the stuff that I hear on the Power mixes on the radio.  I did not care what was on TOP 40, I wanted my house music!

I would ask my friends how to mix, the concept you know.  Count beats, understand concepts and beat match.  In my head I would listen to the mudic and count beats and beat match in my head.  I did not have equipment but I would mess around with friends that had it.  DJ equipment is not cheap.  Its not how it is now where you can get a $200 DJ controller from eBay.  Back then, the only way was a pair of technics 1200’s and a mixer in there too.  This was before Pioneer CD-J’s or Serato software.  It was all with vinyl records.

It was until college or something like that when I got some equipment, it wasn’t the best but  it worked.  It thought that I was good, of course I sucked.  I was the night when I was at Club Continential when I was drunk and I said, “Fuck these DJs here I can play better!”  Of course that was not true.  Still, I went to the owner of the place and applied for a DJ spot.  I had an audition and some how, I got the job there.  There were several DJs at the time.  I was the worse there.  My playing time was almost zero because I sucked.  It was a long time until I got better and then after that got more playing time and then be default I was #1 DJ at the club.

That was the beginning.  I love music and I love DJing.  Especially at the time I was thinking, “I am getting PAID for partying.”  The money wasnt great and for a long time it has been like that.  The problem with DJ in Chicago is that there are a lot of them.  So, really there are DJs that would do it for free at a club or party.  It was that easy then, so if I get money that would be good.

Of course with time, the DJing game changed.  Its not all about the club anymore.  I mean you can be a DJ online and be paid.  I always wanted to be on the radio but, thats not even the best anymore for the DJ.  There are thousands of DJs that have their mixtapes online nowl and I am of them.  Because all you need is a computer to record now.  Fuck that there are kid that out there that can make a “mix” and not even even equipment now.

So last year in September when I decided to try this TWITCH MUSIC thing, I was leg up with a lot of them Twitch DJs.  I mean I have been a DJ close to 20 years and I know all the tricks of DJing and mixing.  I might not be the best in some of the tricks but I knew that I was better then some or even most of them on Twitch.  On Twitch there are real DJs in there which I request and then there are the wanna bes.  You can pick them easy, at least you would think.  The thing is thereare so many people now that they cannot tell the difference a real DJ and a fake.  Trust me there are so many fakes.  I do not want to go through al that, not tonight at least.

Anyways, I knew that in the beginning it was going to be rough for me.  Hours when I was just playing for me.  Which really means that I have no listeners or followers.  After 5 or 6 months   I thought that I broke that.  It was actually fun.  It is fun because not only I have listeners, I would interact with them.  Thats the fun part for me, because the DJing part is something that I can do in my sleep.

After having three great months.  It changed.  I do not me or it is my community; maybr it is both.  But the thing is that I have listeners and may be not as much as I expect, but there is little to may be no interaction at some nights.  When I have nights like that it like, be being at the club and a no one is dancing though.  I am sorry but my job is make them dance (if I am at the club).  My listeners online, they might be having a good time there, but I have no idea, because I have a screen.  They might see me but I don’t see them.  So if they do not talk/chat to me, I am not talking because I already have to work on the DJing.  Go to a club, you do not see the DJ be talking to the crowd.

Because of the situation that I am now, there are times where its not fun at least to me.

 

 

 

Still grinding ….

It in is May now which means that I have been on twitch for about 9 months now.  I have to admit that it has been a roller coaster.  In the months of December to Feburary I was increased with a huge about of followers.  With two months i was increasing for over 400+.  At the point I thought hat I was going break out.  In March the number dropped for two cases.  I was out of town for about a week and then when I came back I got sick for about another week.  So you can say that for about two weeks I was not streaming for various reasons.  I knew that my numbers were going to be low because of that but for some reason it really did no go back to where it was a month ago.  I was averaging about 20 viewers in the stream but there are times when I would be happy if there are 10+.

There are nights that I feel like I was back in the beginning when I barely had anyone in the stream.  There are a few reason because of that.  There are some of my loyal followers that had life changes; you know like they have a girlfriend or shit like that.  I cannot do anything about that.  Hey man if you found a girl and you are not spending time on twitch or on the internet, good for you.  Then there are shit like I am not the only DJ out there so I do have competition you know.  I am playing the prime time hours now, not the weird hours where I may be the only DJ (or atleast the good on) on Twitch at the time.   Of course, with the pride that I have, I feel that I am one of the better DJs that are out there on Twitch.  I mean there are a lot bad ones and of course there are some that might be ok but they are cheating using the crap like SYNC and shit.  I dont care, there are people that have different optitions with SYNC button, but I feel that I am with the majority.  If you use the SYNC button I can get Nathan out here are he can DJ and mix too.  FUCK SYNC BUTTON.  There are too many of those assholes on Twitch that use that.  They are bitches that one day bought a equipment and they don’t know shit about DJing.  They find this button and, oh cool I can DJ now, the computer does the work for me.  FUCK THAT.

There is also other things that I really don’t want to say in public because it just doesn’t sound goof.  I know that I have said these things within private or with people that I know but I think its better if I do not say that where someone that I do not know read it and take the info the wrong way.

I feel frustrated at times because my goals that I put there are not even close to where I want to be.  Its passed 6 months and there are nights where I am on the bottom of MUSIC section?  Before I was on the top, maybe not the top line but about the second.  There are DJs there that suck and they are killing me with followers.  WTF is going on?  Then there are people that come in there and if I do not play what they want they leave and they will never come back.  I play various genres of music and just because I am not playing TRAP music now, you are telling me that I am not a good DJ?

I don’t know man, I want to move up the ladder there but there are times where I am on the bottom.  On a good night I think I feel like that I am going no where.  Sure I love the people that are regulars in there (aka the KraZyKREW) but I want the Krew to get bigger and not get smaller, while bust ass DJs are getting bigger.

There are nights where I want to quit, but I am not a quitter.  Still, I do not bang my head at night and run in insane.  I try to change and see what is good, be DIFFERENT, but the shit is just going insane.