01 juli 2017

The Art Of Feeling Music

Hoi iedereen en welkom op mijn blog,

Ik ben Steve Gl@mm en dit is mijn dj-blog. Bedoeling hiervan is uiteraard dat er dj mixen op het blog verschijnen maar ook de nodige info over alles wat met het dj gebeuren te maken heeft. Het is wel enigszins de bedoeling om een verschil te maken met andere dj’s en dit uiteraard in de muziekkeuze, underground met een lekkere groove.

De stijl van mijn keuze en voorkeur gaat in de richting van smooth deep house lounge tot deep house met een goeie dosis tech house en wat techno er doorheen. Het zal vooral lekker dansbaar zijn met een goeie stevige baslijn als rode draad door het genre. Wat ik absoluut wil vermijden is de commerciële housemuziek, die hoor je constant overal en is te doorzichtig en te algemeen. Mijn mening natuurlijk, no hard feelings voor de liefhebbers van dit genre.

Uiteraard zal er af en toe wel eens iets herkenbaar in voorkomen maar zolang het maar af en toe is, is het geoorloofd vind ik. Het is toch wel eerder de bedoeling van de iets mindere gangbare house te draaien, zeg maar het genre waar je lekker met je hoofd begint te knikken op het ritme van de grooves, daarna volgen de voeten en tenslotte ben je niet meer van de dansvloer weg te slaan. Het soort house-muziek dat je even alles doet vergeten, waarvan je alles van je af kan zetten en je kan laten drijven op de beats, pure underground dus.

Ik ben er in ieder geval hard mee bezig om dit alles te kunnen verwezenlijken. Het is een passie die kriebelt en waar ik niet aan kan weerstaan. Ben je zelf dj en heb je tips of een interessant voorstel dan mag je dat altijd doormailen naar steveglamm@gmail.com.

Ik heb ook een Mixcloud profiel aangemaakt waar mijn mixen te beluisteren zijn. Voel je vrij om deze te delen met liefhebbers van het genre, geef gerust comments en likes zoals je zelf wil. Uiteraard staan deze mixen ook hier op mijn blog. Je kan ook terecht op mijn facebook.

Ik ga ook op regelmatige basis muziek posten zodat jullie een idee krijgen van wat ik lekker vind en die je dan uiteraard ook in mijn mixen zal terugvinden. Ook interessante artikels over allerhande wat met het dj-gebeuren te maken heeft kan je terugvinden op mijn blog. Bedoeling is van een overzichtelijk geheel te maken met interessante informatie.

Hopelijk tot snel
Steve Gl@mm

30 juni 2017


Natural Born Techno Grooves

For more Gl@mmertechno you can go to my Mixcloud page

29 juni 2017

28 juni 2017


Groovy Deep/Tech House Dance Music

For more Gl@mmergrooves you can go to my Mixcloud page

27 juni 2017


Catchy Progressive House Beats


For more Gl@mmervibes you can go to my Mixcloud page

26 juni 2017

Getting DJ Mixers Right

First things first, I have a confession to make: I have never owned a Rane mixer.  In fact, at the time of this writing, I’ve never owned a Rane product at all (though I’ve played on the occasional old-school Serato mixer here and there).
That being said, I really appreciate the company’s current approach to their mixer lineup… especially when compared to some of their competitors.

Circular Reasoning

Here’s the MP2015: a mixer with a rather spartan appearance, trimmed out in laser-etched wood and large knobs.  Not a single line fader to be found, Rane’s latest offering is a throwback to the club mixers of yore.
Rane MP2015
This mixer doesn’t just satisfy a market of people who prefer circles over lines.  This mixer is for control freaks.
Starting with the simple fact that it’s a rotary (knobs just feel more subtle than sliding forward-and-back), the very design of the mixer implies a need for precision.  Each meter has plenty of LEDs, for instance.  But aside from that, the mixer presents some intriguing routing and “shaping” options.
The MP2015 features a Submix – basically, an additional mix bus which you can have any or all of your mix channels routed to.  Think of it this way: in the same way that you can press any number of “CUE” buttons to hear those channels in your headphones, you have another button which routes any selected channels to a new “fifth” channel (complete with its own EQ, filter, and volume controls).
This allows you to do things that might otherwise require you to have four arms.  Example: If you are mixing 4-deck techno, and you want to “filter up” two of the channels while bringing in the bass of another song, this allows you to do that.
Another feature is the Isolator – a sort of glorified EQ which is applied to your entire output.  It has three frequency bands, with adjustable crossover frequencies between those bands. The crossover between lows and mids ranges from 80 to 640 Hz, the one between mids and highs ranges between 1kHz and 8kHz.

What this would mean for me, personally, is that I could properly listen to some of my OLD records (pre-1990s), and compensate a little bit for the sound of the room I’m in.
But, with great power comes great responsibility.  This level of control is easily abused by DJs who don’t know what they’re doing.  This mixer is meant for a seasoned ear.
The mixer may appear old-school, but don’t let it fool you.  It contains within, a dual-USB high quality sound card.  That’s right, two DJs can use the the internal sound card at once, making switch-overs a breeze.
Yes, that means that while this mixer harkens back to an analogue era, this is a digital mixer through-and-through… just to be clear.
Unfortunately, the sound card has no DVS-certification of any kind (including Serato).  Which means that using timecode involves the addition of a separate box in the chain (aside from, perhaps, Virtual DJ).  This seems severely limiting to the target demographic.
It is, however, nice to see that Rane is concerned with the level of quality in this product.  The thing looks like it’s built with Technics 1200-like indestructibility in mind.  Of course, only time will tell if this pans out… but Rane claims they are testing the knobs for a minimum of one million cycles.
This mixer, in all it’s sonically-OCD glory, does weigh in at a hefty price… advertised at $2199.  Unfortunately, this price tag makes the mixer prohibitively expensive for the average DJ.
Still, what I really like about this mixer is the statement it makes.  There’s been a long push of DJ hardware that was designed by marketers instead of experienced DJs.  The MP2015 says, “I’m a mixer for DJs.”  There is a recent trend of this, lately… we can only add so many bells, whistles, screens and lights.
I like hardware designed with intent.  Gear which is designed to support a certain workflow… to solve a particular artist’s problem.  This mixer is a shining example of this, and if it does well, may prompt similar moves by competitors.  I see this as only being good for the industry.

This mixer is too rich for my blood, but damned if I don’t fantasize about sitting behind my decks and playing records through it all night.
I suppose I’ll have to settle for a high-quality rotary kit for my Kontrol S8, for now.  Hint hint, NI…

Scratch DJs, Rejoice!

The TTM57SL was a popular choice for Serato DJs for years, and is still used by many.  But when Rane announced their discontinued support of classic SSL devices, owners couldn’t help but feel abandoned.
Serato hears the cries of their customers, and their answer is the TTM57MKII.  This mixer is for the no-nonsense scratch DJ.
A classic reborn, the “MKII” version of the mixer sports a familiar layout, while adding features now expected by the modern digital DJ. For example, the TTM57MKII also features the dual-USB architecture, making switch-overs between DJs a breeze.  And, of course, today’s staple feature: RGB-backlit buttons.
Some PR from Rane:
Rane Introduces the TTM57mkII for Serato DJ
When introduced in 2006 the TTM57SL broke ground as the first ever DJ mixer with built-in USB sound card and tightly integrated Serato software controls. When discontinued in 2013, the TTM57SL had developed a cult-like following.
TTM57mkII stays true to its original design by supporting familiar workflow while improving performance and software integration. Updated software controls include silicone RGB backlit pads for triggering 4 cue points per deck or the SP-6 sampler. Classic joystick controls toggle slip, instant doubles, internal mode, censor, and transform. Dedicated auto-loop & loop roll controls with back-lit buttons. Intuitive Serato DJ iZotope FX controls for easy & quick access.
The mixer features Rane’s exclusive dual USB port architecture for intuitive DJ change over and supports creative dual computer applications. The TTM57mkII is a classic reborn.
Key improvements include:
    Dual USB 2.0 high speed class compliant audio and MIDI USB ports
    • No driver required on Mac
    • High performance ASIO driver for Windows
    • 10 record and 10 playback channels per port
  • Sample rates of 44.1 kHz, 48 kHz and 96 kHz
  • Dedicated Serato DJ iZotope USB FX inserts for each deck
  • Software color coded silicone RGB back-lit pads.
  • Aux Channel for SP-6 routing.
  • High/Low-Pass sweep filters for Decks 1, 2 and Aux.
  • Ranes proprietary non-contact magnetic faders
The Rane TTM57mkII Mixer is a plug-and-play package supporting one or two computers, with two-deck digital vinyl simulation (DVS), the Serato SP-6 sample player, software effects and all the record and playback channels you need.
Both USB ports connect to computers running Serato DJ or most DJ and DAW audio programs, working with Native Core Audio support for Mac and an ASIO driver for Windows. Class-compliant audio and MIDI means no driver installation on a Mac, and a unified ASIO Rane driver is provided for Windows. Dual USB ports help DJs seamlessly change over between sets, even if they use different software.
The TTM57mkII has so many improvements over the TTM57SL, it’s truly a new mixer with a lot more creative power.
• Each USB 2.0 port supports 5 stereo record and 5 stereo playback channels.
• Great-sounding 32-bit floating-point audio processing sampled at 44.1, 48 and 96 kHz.
• Deck controls include source select, Gain trim, 3-band full-cut isolator tone controls and a sweepable High/Low-pass Filter.
• An external analog insert can route the left, right, or both Decks to an analog effects processor.
• Independent USB FX Inserts for each deck support post-fader iZotope software FX.
• A dedicated USB Aux Input for SP-6 sample playback with Gain Trim, sweepable High/Low-pass Filter and a Headphone Cue.
• Long-life magnetic crossfader and channel faders have reverse and contour controls.
• All controls are MIDI-mappable.
A typical setup includes two Serato DVS decks, software FX through independent USB digital inserts for each Deck, and the SP-6 sample player on its own USB Aux input.

Rane Sets an Example

The thing I appreciate about the imminent Rane mixer lineup, is that each mixer serves a specific purpose.  Rane recognizes that there are different types of DJs, and different ways they like to play, so why discriminate?  Let’s serve each corner of the market.
This seems like good old basic business sense, but it’s surprising how many companies have gotten this wrong.  Pioneer has a well-earned hold on the “pro” mixer market, but their lineup is comparatively a mess.  The differences between a 750, an 850, and a 900 are strangely chosen and really seem to be a case of “slap more FX on it and double the price”.  Even Allen & Heath, god love ‘em, have made similar decisions with their mixer lineup.
I hope that other companies start to act in kind, and realize that DJs want equipment designed by real DJs and not by marketing firms. I’ve never owned a Rane mixer and I have no real stake in this… but I like where their heads are at.
Make it, Rane.

05 juni 2017

The Truth About Tech House

As we dive headlong into 2015 ‘deep’ house is still riding high as dance music’s favourite sound – certainly in the UK and in a few places beyond our fair borders to boot. Last year saw the genre’s bubble swell in size, with countless producers contributing to both established underground and increasing commercial scenes. However, in the wake of this fascination a notable trend is emerging which shuns the bouncy basslines and catchy vocals proven popular in recent years and instead enforces that familiar house groove, with a stronger focus on polished percussion and no-nonsense, driving energy. That’s right ladies and gentleman, tech house is back – if indeed it ever went away.
Originally derived from record stores who coined the term tech house when referring to house music’s hybridisation with techno, the genre began taking shape early on in Detroit before growing in popularity during the 90s. According to Vladimir Bogdanov in All Music Guide to Electronica: The Definitive Guide to Electronic Music, tech house was used to describe the sound curated by “mostly European producers who culled many of the rhythms and effects of acid and progressive house yet with a clean, simplistic production style suggestive of Detroit and British techno.”
The End, one of the London’s most notorious nightclubs, was fundamental in the rise of tech house. Its founders Layo Paskin and Mr C were forerunners of the genre, their Saturday night parties at the club usually championing a theme of rolling kick drums, thunderous snares and mechanical sounds.
Although The End may have shut its doors for good back in 2009 it was only a small piece of a much bigger picture. Artists such as Anja Schneider, Re.you, Rodriguez Jr, Shlomi Aber, Marc Scholl, Tom Flynn, Steve Bug and Timo Garcia are all excellent examples of first-rate tech house artists, many of which have all been championing the sound for the best part of a decade. Furthermore, reputable imprints Moon Harbour, Mobilee Records and Leena Music are a few of the platforms which predominately put out quality tech house, of which Matthias Tanzmann’s label Moon Harbour has been doing so since its foundation in 2000.
Another advocate of the tech house scene is DJ and producer Nick Curly, an export of south-west Germany renowned for his seminal tech house imprints 8bit and Cecille Records. Curly also spearheaded the lauded ‘Mannheim sound’ alongside the likes of Marcus Fix, Johnny D and Gorge – a deep and groovy take on house which proved refreshing during the minimal era which was running rife at the time throughout Europe, with imprints such as Kompakt, Cocoon, BPitch Control and Traum Schallplatten leading the way.  
Now, many of those who have been enjoying deep house for the last couple of years are now becoming engrossed in something different. Whereas the more popular forms of house may come across as predictable, with pitched downvocals, garage elements and rumbling basslines becoming the norm in today’s market, tech house opposes these conventions to instead employ something darker and industrial. Similarly, deep house’s inflation in popularity means many producers are beginning to reject it and instead focus on other genres. Much like Skream, who publically disassociated himself from dubstep last year, producers can have a tendency to move away from a sound when it swells and saturates. 
“Things needed to evolve” said the Magnetic Man member in regards to his newfound direction, something many deep house producers may find sympathy with today. Whenever the spotlight is on a particular style of music it inherits fresh and exciting artists who can bring innovation and originality to the scene but also other newcomers who instead capitalise on formulaic production techniques, tainting a genres reputation and in turn diverting listeners away from the artists who have pioneered the sound from the beginning with passion and integrity.
The recent rise of tech house has even spurred on media controversy with Mixmag featuring an article entitled ‘Stop The Tech-House Takeover’. This initiated a wave of responses from readers who took to Twitter to either support or criticise the piece, resulting in a scene-wide debate that in turn lead to a further article in favour of the genre.
With all these precursors of the genres popularisation it is possible that we are on the cusp of a tech house boom? Whatever your take on tech house, this newfound popularity is reflective of the house music’s growing appeal to a wider audience and if this benefits the scene then who are we to complain?
Will Lawes

08 mei 2017

The rise of electronic music in Berlin

Soundtrack of a state of emergency

Techno has made its mark on Berlin for over 20 years and vice-versa. Whether it was Westbam who moved to West Berlin in the mid-80s and played an early form of what would later become known as Techno in his DJ sets, or in places like the legendary Tresor club after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the whole thing took on a dynamic of its own. By the mid-90s E-werk was playing a more populist sound and within the span of only a few years the Love Parade had turned into an event that drew millions and that was broadcast live on television. Nowadays Techno in Berlin still remains part of an experimental subculture while simultaneously bringing tens of thousands of tourists from all over the world to the city. As constantly evolving as the locations in which parties are being thrown, is the ever changing soundtrack of electronic music in the German capital, something which is as creative and as non-stop as ever.

Following 28 years of division, on October 3rd 1990 East and West Germany were reunited and resulted in the sudden emergence of a new space within Berlin in which to venture. Whether it was a former tank depot in the dusty no man’s land in the death strip, a bunker from the 2nd World War, a disused soap factory by the River Spree or a power station opposite the former ministry for aviation of the 3rd Reich – all of these places, which had become outdated by history, suddenly became the backdrop for the Techno scene and Techno just as suddenly became the underground soundtrack of the East-West reunification.

Techno itself had already started in Detroit back in the mid-80s, but the new electronic sound had never really made a home for itself there . A club scene surrounding the music had never really developed.

Berlin at the beginning of the 90s was quite the opposite as the city did not have a long history of electronic music. Unlike Frankfurt which from the 80s onwards had had a network of clubs, producers in place, at the time West Berlin was actually a city of Rock n Roll, albeit an experimental one. In East Berlin on the other hand, it was a highly secretive and dangerous task to be part of any youth culture and the first generation of punks were rigorously persecuted. Young people were accustomed to having to look hard for niches. For example Breakdance, which had a longer lasting effect on subculture in East Germany than in West Germany. This could possibly explain the roots of the East Germany’s love of electronic music. This love of the sound flourished in temporary clubs and parties in empty spaces and abandoned buildings in the city just after 1989. Some for were on just for just one night, others for weeks or even years. In the end it was Berlin, following the fall of the wall, that was able to provide the most fertile ground for a Techno to develop and a creative club scene to take shape.

A short and certainly uncomprehensive summary of the infinite places and protagonists that have left their mark on electronic music in Berlin since then will follow.

The magic of new sounds and undiscovered places

The promise of freedom hidden within the music turned Techno into the soundtrack of the state of emergency that followed the fall of the wall. Suddenly everyone could DJ, produce tracks or start fanzines. At the start, the Techno scene was not concentrated on star figures and even the DJ was just a part of the party and not the focus. Even today the stars of the city are not individuals, rather part of the collective i.e. Berlin’s clubs and it’s club goers. And at the beginning of the 90s there seemed hardly any music genre that could cause to such a disparate mix of people to dance so peacefully together in the way that techno did. Early parties were attended by breakdancers, football hooligans, punks from the former East Berlin and radio junkies, as well as a mass of former West Berliners from the gay scene, the squatter scene, students, artists or even off duty soldiers. They partied in clubs like Walfisch, Planet, UFO or at Tekknozid parties the latter of which was started by Wolle XDB amongst others. Tresor, a club which was situated in the former Wertheim department store building, also made a considerable mark on it’s city and in that in such a way that no other club did in the 90s. Having opened in 1991, Tresor gave rise to the Detroit-Berlin axis and not only took particular care to fortify and maintain it through the label Tresor Records, they even launched a number of DJ and producer careers. From the resident Djs , Tanith, Jonzon, Rok and Terrible are probably the most prominent. In May 2005 Tresor and the building that housed it was finally torn down because an office building was being planned on the same site. Only two years later the club reopened at a different location. Some of the original locker safes from the old club in the Wertheim building were removed and built into the new club, thus serving to preserve the memory of the old Tresor. However the spirit of the old club could never really be restored to it’s prior glory.

The old and the new ‘club mile’ of Berlin

Without doubt the Berlin scene has since then forged links with numerous places of revelry like Bar 25, Ostgut’s follow-up club Berghain or Watergate. Most of them gravitate somewhere along the axis between Alexanderplatz and Revelar Straße. Tobias Rapp, in his critically acclaimed book ‘Lost and Sound’ which was recently also published in English, refers to Berlin’s new ‘club mile’. The ‘club mile’ actually has a predecessor. There was also a time back in the 90s when club culture found itself concentrated in one area i.e. a kilometre stretch along Leipzigerstraße which runs between Friedrichstraße and Potsdamer Platz , itself still a barren wasteland at that time. Due to clubs like Tresor, WMF and E-werk which were located on that stretch, there were less people on the street during the day than at the night.

For those keen on finding out more about the Berlin clubscene from the late 80s till the mid-90s, Der Klang der Familie by Felix Denk and Sven von Thülen is highly recommended and will most probably find a place in the heart of any insatiable raver.

The book is a form of oral history and with the help of a collage of 150 interviews, it sheds light on the period surrounding the beginnings of the Berlin club scene. Even those who feel that there’s little that has not been said about this period will find an abundance of unknown facts, anedotes and cross references linger upon.

The babble of languages

Following what’s statistically been seen as the peak of Techno at the end of the 90s (1.5 million visitors at the 1999 Berlin Love Parade) and despite what some media predicted as the end of electronic music and the comeback of the Rockstar, there has been and continues to be a vibrant culture of House, Techno, Electro, Minimal – and whatever else one wants to name it! In fact in Berlin this music and it’s associated scene became bigger, more diverse and more interesting in the noughties than ever before. Never before have clubs in Berlin been able to draw such large crowds (especially on an international level) in the way that Berghain, Watergate, Weekend and the now extinct Bar 25 have done. Thousands upon thousands have , and continue to come ot Berlin week in and week out to spend the weekend partying endlessly.

When standing in the queue of a club in Berlin and upon hearing the babble of languages that surround you, it becomes apparent that it ‘s not a local but rather an international phenomenon which despite culminating in Berlin, is actually fuelled by clubbers from the all over the world, in particular from the USA but also from northern and southern parts of Europe. Some people stay for a few months or more while others just come for the weekend.

The noughties saw an ever increasing number of artists drawn to the city by relatively cheap rents and a network of labels, clubs, producers and record shops (e.g. the legendary Hard Wax which is run by the just as legendary Mark Ernestus, who together with Moritz von Oswald formed the dub techno duo Basic Channel which is a legend in itself) as well as ample opportunities to perform live. Such is the case with Luciano, Richie Hawtin or Zip, the latter of whom moved to Berlin from Frankfurt with his label Perlon and very much shaped the sound of the city and it’s afterhour culture. The same applies for Ricardo Villalobos who’s tracks „Dexter“ or „Easy Lee“ went on to become signature tracks of the new sound of Berlin.

Autumn 2008 saw the release of director Hannes Stöhr’s film Berlin Calling where Paul Kalkbrenner (meanwhile well on his way to being a superstar) acted in the main role. The film hit the cinema almost 20 years after the first serious attempt of a film about Berlin and it’s Techno culture. Since then there have been numerous documentaries that try to tell the story of Berlin’s clubs. The three most recent examples are Subberlin – The Story of Tresor, Bar 25 – Tage außerhalb der Zeit or Berlinized – Sexy An Eis.

The wild times are over but the spirit remains …

Even in the decade after the noughties, Berlin remains the ultimate mekka for EasyJet-Ravers and there’s nowhere else in Germany that has such a diverse, affordable and extensive kind of partying on offer. In fact there’s nowhere else in the world where there’s always another party waiting and before you know it, just as the last afterhour comes to an end the next weekend has commenced.

However on the relative scale of things the wild times of the 90s in Berlin are over, whereby many clubs (illegal or semi-legal) have become solidly-run small and middle sized businesses. However the spirit does continue to be felt. Each month sees the opening and closing of new locations and each weekend sees an array of illegal open air parties taking place all over the city. But in face of the discussion surrounding gentrification, the planned introduction of new fees which clubs will be forced to pay to the German royalties society (GEMA) and its consequent threat to clubs in 2013, the question is for just how long can this spirit actually remain? The fact that millions of club tourists not only fill the empty cash desks of the city and that the party szene itself has played a huge role in forming an image of Berlin as a creative hub is something that even the Berlin senate has recognized. Thus they are putting pressure on the German royalties society to change their detrimental reform which is planned.

One can hope that Techno will continue to create and develop smaller and larger niches in the city, although that certainly seems to have been easier to do 20 years ago than it is today.

Sascha Uhlig

10 april 2017

Creating Community: Foundations

As a DJ, it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re doing what you can to cultivate a great community. It’s what brings people together and it’s how you can grow your profile, help to get more gigs, more people to your gigs and be in control. Traditionally, this would be IRL - flyer drops in record stores, street posters, passing around physical mixtapes, word of mouth etc. While this is still important, it’s hard to ignore the time people spend online in 2015. Facebook alone has over 1.4 billion worldwide users who spend on average 40 mins per day on the platform. Almost 1 in 5 people on earth has a Facebook profile :)
While it continues to grow as a space to engage with potential fans, it’s important to understand the amount of content and noise generated… For example, every 20 minutes on Facebook there are 1 million links shared, 2 million friend requests and 3 million messages sent. How can you cut through this and develop an engaged community and fanbase? Here’s a few key principles to remember when thinking about how you use social media to build your DJ profile.
You could think of social media like sync… :D It’s not going to make you a better DJ or gain more fans by itself. You still have to be a good DJ. Time spent on the internet still isn’t as important as time spent practicing :) If you use it well though, it’s a great help!

Have a purpose other than building likes / follows

Would you prefer a slightly smaller crowd going nuts on the dancefloor or a packed bar with no-one dancing or listening to you?
You need to have a purpose in social media. This is the backbone of any successful social media strategy and needs to be quite specific. You may want to get more likes on your page but how does this relate to real life goals? Building page likes or follows should be a sign of success rather than the outcome you are trying to drive.
Do your fans come to the club to see you play? Do they listen to your radio show? Do they buy your tracks? Do you get bookings for parties? You should define what your goals are so you can spend your time (and money) wisely. If you’re a mobile DJ and your goal is to get more bookings for weddings / birthdays your activity will be very different to a DJ trying to get booked in the club. If you are serious about your DJ business, then defining your purpose will let you measure how successful you are and give you something to aim for.

Create value

After defining your purpose you should think about why someone should follow your page. Would you follow someone just to get invited to events and see gig flyers each week? Creating value for your fans is how you build real support. Try a 50 / 50 split between posting promotional and inspirational content so you're not bombarding people with self promo.
Content doesn’t have to be expensive or hard either! Here are some examples of what you could be creating:
  • Mixtapes! These should be your bread and butter.
  • Sharing mixes from other DJs you like / respect. People love commentary and curation and you want to be an opinion leader!
  • Articles and insights (top 10 bangers, opinion pieces on music/tech/DJ culture, production tips etc.)
  • photos! (past events, studio shots, old flyers for #TBT etc.)
  • Videos (video wrap ups from past events, short performances, studio selfies etc.)
  • DJ Edits, remixes or your own productions.
Quality is more important than quantity, but at the same time regular activity is also important in maintaining an online presence. An easy way to manage the need for regular content while keeping the quality is to bring the same content to life in a few different ways. For example, if you make a new mixtape, you could also have a short video of you making it, you could have a blog post about the mix with an embedded player and you could have the mix itself - that’s three pieces of content for the price of one and will also let you target fans who engage with different media formats (articles, videos, music).
Make sure to keep an eye on what works and what doesn’t so you’re relevant. If you’re a radio DJ and no-one is into your photo of the studio before you play each week, maybe think about changing your tactics. Keep doing what works and adjust what doesn’t until you get it right.


Make sure that social media isn’t your only promotional activity. You should be using every tool you can to build your brand as a DJ. Social media exists to amplify this and help, but it’s not the replacement.
Make sure your social profiles are easy to find. This means choosing a name that people will find (facebook.com/djmickstape rather than facebook.com/djmickstapeworldsgreatestdj), filling out your “about section” on your page and making sure you have clear links and “follow me at…” calls to action from your gig flyers, any online/physical posters and other websites.
You will also want to try and work with any other partners you have to increase your visibility. If you play at a club each week, ask them to share your mixes if you are posting these if they manage their own pages. Ask to do guest mixes for local businesses also and ask other local DJs if they want to make videos with you. Bring your team up with you, it’s way easier!
You might want to start building an email database as well, which will give you another avenue to drive actions such as RSVP for parties, buy tickets, buy new tracks, download mixes etc. with leads acquired on Facebook. You can use services such as Mailchimp to do this which have both free and paid for levels of service.

Talk with your fans not at them.

The best thing about social media for brands and businesses is that it lets you be human. As a DJ you have the advantage of being slightly cooler than corporate enterprises, but you still have to make sure you’re talking with your audience and participating rather than just shouting at them.
Be nice. No-one likes a dickhead. Be respectful of negative opinions (as long as they aren’t offensive) and healthy criticism. Don’t feed trolls, they have a huge appetite. Also be careful about your own opinions...
You should also respond to everyone. Social media is a conversation and making yourself available is a great way to connect with your fans.

Don’t overthink it.

Lastly and maybe ironically after reading this whole article, the best advice is to not overthink it. Usually when you think something is a good idea it is a good idea. If your gut tells you it’s probably not the best idea, it’s probably not. There are a million experts in social media and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the “best practice” and rules. While there are some principles to understand it’s all about just being there and being interesting / entertaining.
Try not to “do social media”, try to be a DJ first and foremost. If you get that right, the rest should fall into place a lot easier.
Sam Stokes