Thanks to the internet and virtual learning, anyone can become a disc jockey (also referred to as a DJ) without going to music school or bagging a degree in arts. This, however, does not take away the fact that every DJ has certain responsibilities they must fulfill whether or not they have been schooled formally.
What sets a good DJ apart from the rest is their understanding of their duties and how they can fulfill them. Now, responsibilities may differ with the occasion, but there are primary roles that every DJ should tick whenever they put their headsets on. If you desire to build your reputation as a DJ, then you should understand these responsibilities.
One of your responsibilities as a DJ is to go through already curated playlists and intentionally decide which ones would work for your audience. Different types of audiences and events appreciate different types of music genres. The fact that a track has already been added to a “Hip-hop” playlist doesn’t mean it would work for your hip-hop-themed event. If your employer sends you a playlist, you should review it and give them feedback on what you think should be added or removed.
If you are working with a radio station or you hope to work with one, then knowing how to present on-air is a must-have skill. Being a DJ at most radio stations would require interacting with the listeners at intervals and delivering emotions through your words. You can learn to do this properly on experimedia.net/tips/how-to-be-a-dj as it is a little more demanding than being a DJ at a physical event. This is because you would have to channel most of your energy to your voice, knowing that your audience can’t see you.
Every music lover has a unique taste in songs, so there may be genres of music you wouldn’t ordinarily listen to on a normal day. However, as a DJ, you should be ready to listen to any kind of music to decide which is suitable for your audience. Compiling a playlist is a task you would have to complete before going on-air or showing up at a function, so schedule time to listen to all the new songs on the deck before adding them to the most appropriate playlist.
Abiding by guidelines.
If you have a problem obeying rules, then you probably shouldn’t be a DJ right now. Every radio station or show has laid down rules for what can be played and cannot be played, words that should never be used, resumption of work hours, and other boundaries in line with your duty as a DJ. Once you cross those boundaries, you would be tarnishing your image as a DJ.
Communicating effectively with the audience.
As a good DJ, you have the potential of becoming well known in your region and beyond – so developing interpersonal skills is as important as knowing how to handle the speakers and discs. You may be required to anchor or emcee events besides deciding when the music should go on or off.
Knowing how to operate the technical stuff.
When launching out as a DJ, most people try to learn how to set up, fix and manage all the technical aspects of disc jockeying, but as time goes by, they could decide to have a team to manage all that while they work their fingers on the discs and keys. This tends to be a valuable skill to have when the team is not available to help out. If you only know how to mix and match music and not connect speakers and plugs, you should take some time out to have a basic knowledge of all that.
If you are looking forward to working with a radio station or an institution, then you may be required to have a degree besides your creative knowledge as a DJ. Some do not mind giving you the job as long as you’ve proved to have a great ear and taste in music, but others value the certificates as well as proficiency.
One way to grow your fan base as a DJ is having people who would refer you to others. Events like weddings and honorary ceremonies only happen once in some people’s lifetime, and they wouldn’t want to take a chance on someone whom others can’t vouch for. This is why the best DJs have many people who can vet for them and recommend them to friends, family, and even foes. Whatever you do, aim to give your audience the best experience as a DJ.