When you come after another DJ, you can play it safe and simply mix out of their last tune. It’s OK, but if you’re reasonably confident of yourself, why not make people aware of your entrance? And no, I don’t mean jumping on the mic and shouting your name; announce yourself with music.
Play a distinctive tune. Play a track that instantly reveals your style and tells the floor who’s behind the decks. Make the change in music tell them who’s in charge now. With this approach, it’s still all right to mix out of the previous DJ’s last tune, provided your music will do the talking.
Create a dramatic pause. Let the previous DJ’s track play out and create a few moments of silence before you put on your first record. This is a simple but effective way to make people aware of the new DJ coming in. And while they are turning their heads thinking, “What’s going on?”, put on that first track of yours.
Start at a lower volume. Did you know that others listen to us closer when we speak softer? It’s the same with music: Turning down the volume a little when you come after someone makes the floor pay more attention. Additionally, you’re giving yourself more headroom for volume increases down the road.
By all means, respect the DJ who was playing before you, but also let the dancefloor know who’s in charge now!
What’s your favorite way of announcing yourself? Any fun stories to share? Chime in in the comments below.
JM has played open-air gigs, shared the stage with the likes of ATB and had mix albums released commercially. He has been teaching DJing since 2008.
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