We got some sound advice, wit and wisdom from some of the world’s top DJs. Today’s question:
What does being a DJ mean to you?
Being a DJ means being dedicated to the crowd we want to make dance. We always want to provide the best possible show.
To me, being a DJ makes it my responsibility to give people a great time when they go out. I like to play tracks that will make my set memorable and take the crowd on a journey.
It means finding a way to slip music I’ve made into a set of songs that I like and appeals to an audience. A DJ can’t just play to the crowd or his/herself; it needs to be a melting pot of original music, remixes/edits/bootlegs, etc., and a few crowd-pleasers.
For us, DJing is our passion and job. But, more importantly, DJing is a responsibility—not only for entertaining the crowd, but also to educate the fans and future generations. We use our sets as a tool to inspire and guide people.
I know it sounds corny, but it really is my dream come true. As long as I feel like I’m connecting with my fans, I’ll keep doing it. It’s a great job; I get to travel and see all sorts of places round the world, meet different people, try different food, and ride a bike in different cities, parks and countrysides. I’ve been doing it at an international level for over a decade, and it’s truly been a great gig so far. I always wanted to work with music, and the thrill for me is to be able to take people on a musical journey, create the vibe, the mood and the excitement. I am grateful to everyone who has made this possible: my cousin Alle and everyone who has worked or still works with me.
That’s what I am. My whole life evolves around music. I don’t see it as a job; I look at it more as a calling and my lifestyle. That’s all I wanted to be my whole life, since I was a kid. It’s hard to put in writing all the good feelings I get trying to answer this simple but not so simple question.
It’s a form of expression, the art of talking musically. I’m at my best when I DJ, as I transform into another creature, animalistic even. I can fairly say DJing is my therapy; it centers me and gives me the balance I need in life. The music I play for hours transports me to a world I can’t describe, really; it’s quite ritualistic.
New World Punx
It means everything. To be able to do what you love for a living, and being able to support your loved ones in the process, is incredible. This is a job that nobody should take for granted, because there are so many talented people out there who have never had the breaks or the recognition they deserve, and because of financial pressures they have to give up their dreams of DJing.
When you reach a certain point in your career, having an established DJ platform also provides the opportunity to let the next generation of talent achieve their goals. Building a family of producers and DJs to be guided under your wing helps cement your place in the history of the scene.
The ability to develop friendships with people worldwide, and in some ways influence and play monumental roles in their development, is very humbling. That’s the essence of DJing—the ability to entertain and connect.
For all of us DJs, we should count ourselves the lucky ones.
I think the best way to describe this is playing the music you love in a way that the crowd can enjoy it. This requires a good balance of reading what the crowd wants and incorporating the music you want to play in a cool way. It’s also about the respect for the art of DJing and mixing. I’m not particularly fond of having a table full of extra technology and equipment. I feel like a good DJ should be able to rock the crowd with two decks, a mixer, and beat-matching with their own ears.