B1 Intermediate US 1355 Folder Collection
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My name is A-Trak, I'm a DJ, producer,
record label owner.
The sort of, like, science of DJing,
if you try to boil it down too much to a simple
description of beatmatching, for example,
definitely like an intangible to it.
On a very simple level, beatmatching is what you
call matching the tempo of one song to the next song
that's playing so that you have a continuous beat.
And just going back to the basic idea that DJs
keep people dancing.
You're able to keep the tempo steady as you go from
song to song.
It's actually a pretty easy technique, but DJing itself
is not that easy and I think the real role of the DJ is
selection, it's picking songs and having a sense of
what to play and when.
And that's the part that's harder to break down or explain.
What really differentiates a good DJ
from a not so good DJ is
selection and taste and sense of timing
and also knowing how to adapt to different crowds.
That's probably the biggest thing that DJs have to learn
is to understand not only what to play and when
but in which setting.
You can't play the same set everywhere.
Electronic music's been around since the late '70s,
early '80s.
So electronic music isn't new but EDM is this newer,
bigger, more polished manifestation of it.
And when it really broke in America, at the beginning of
this decade, it's also when certain songs were
really bona fide pop songs, and were playing on the radio.
New audiences embraced these big records that had a
universal appeal, and by the same token embraced
the producers and DJs who were behind those records.
More and more of these festivals started popping up.
I think that confused a lot of people.
Just seeing a DJ essentially play songs
that were already made,
on the stage where they'd be used to seeing
the Red Hot Chili Peppers or something.
People were questioning whether
DJs were really just pressing
play and that became a bit of a buzzword,
"pressing play" or "button pusher."
The range of different styles that started existing
got almost too big to just categorize as one thing.
So, do some DJs just go up and press play and
phone in the same set at a lot of events?
Yeah.
Does that mean that all DJs do that, no.
A lot of DJs have true craftsmanship and art
to what they do.
Usually the argument that most people will give
and that I was just giving also is that DJs don't
really play the same set everywhere and we're
mixing live and all this stuff.
But in some cases when the show is so big, that you
get into a place where there actually is literally pyro
and effects that need to be timed and this and that,
then you'll have a DJ who plans their set.
But even that to me, can be compared to theater.
When you go watch theater, it's pre-planned but it's
great entertainment.
In the case of a DJ, the DJ is doing a sort of
mise-en-scène, of songs that they know the crowd
will enjoy hearing.
And songs that they are sometimes connected to or
that they made.
And translating that into a show that will work
in front of 60,000 people.
There's an art to that too.
The control of energy is kind of magical
and undeniable.
And that's a big part of the art too.
So between that and
the sort of sonic wizardry
that happens with the knobs on here,
it definitely isn't something to be diminished.
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What Do DJs Actually Do?

1355 Folder Collection
Liang Chen published on October 30, 2018    餓犬 translated    Evangeline reviewed
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