Tag Archives: Mobile DJ Tips

Are DJs becoming obsolete?

By Tony Fernandez:

Why is it that whenever DJs comes across an article about how brides want to save money or how couples want to DIY their weddings and the suggestion of using an iPad , iPod (are those still a thing?), Spotify, Pandora, etc., are brought up DJs seem to loose their collective minds?

I’m going to put this out there: If you have to worry about iPads, iPods, etc., becoming a factor in how you do business or conduct yourself as a DJ do us all a favor and hang up your headphones, do not pass GO, you do not collect $200.00. Turn in your DJ card and relegate yourself to doing backyard soirees for your HOA or PTA events.

There is no question that as time has marched on technology has allowed for possibilities inconceivable even a few years ago. Today access to music is truly instantaneous and on demand. Think about it, it wasn’t too long ago that getting music was a pretty regimented process: you heard a song on the radio or in the club; you find out who it is; you went to Sam Goody or Tower Records and you bought your CD. Repeat for the next desired song/album.

The internet changed everything, how music was distributed, shared, and obtained. iPods changed how music was collected and played back. Computers changed how music was stored. Streaming has changed how music is accessed. With all of those dramatic changes and the power at the fingertips of everyone and anyone, the perception is that everyone and anyone can make and share playlists. If that isn’t enough, you can find other people’s playlists and use those. This action gives the perception that collecting, cultivating, disseminating, and presenting music is “easy”.

While I don’t profess that being a DJ is equivalent to neurological surgery, and not every DJ is an “artist”, the reality is being a DJ does require skill.   DJs are more than a person that strings together random songs or creates killer playlists. Our profession is based on the experience, knowledge, and proficiency to play the right song at the right time, every time. You can’t wing it. You can’t pre-plan it. You can’t create a playlist beforehand.   You live in the moment, make a decision and execute every 90 seconds or less.

Clients have every right to choose to have their wedding, birthday, corporate event, etc. fulfilled by a low cost / automated option. They get what they pay for. That client isn’t my client.

Our job is to become and continue to be the best DJ we can be. Do that and I promise you, you will have work. Clients who want a successful event will hire talented and experienced people to fulfill that expectation. You’re selling you, your experience and your skill set.

Bottom line: If you equate yourself to an iPod, expect to be treated like an iPod. I’ll be hanging out with the experienced professionals.

Keep ‘em spinning. Till next time.

 Based out of Richmond, VA, DJ Tony Fernandez has been a DJ, Remixer, Producer, Musical Soothsayer and Audio Gear Oracle since 1980. Find him on facebook. Email djtonytf@gmail.com

 

“I Turned Down My First Client”

By Brian Buonassissi:

 

Here’s a statement I never thought I would make: After some 22 years of business I turned down my first client. Last year, I was listening to one of the PHDJ podcast episodes hosted by Mike Walter and Joe Bunn (if you’re not subscribed to it, you need to be) and the question came up if either of them had ever turned down a client? Like me, up to that point, neither of them had. However, the question gave me serious pause to think about clients that were “questionable.”

I can think of a handful of clients our company has taken on where, when we went to contract, I had a feeling they were going to be trouble clients. In the end, they all ended up to be exactly that – every single one of them. In some cases, we had to give a partial or full refund. Listening to the podcast, I began to ask myself, “Why did we take these clients on?”

The reasons varied. Part of me didn’t want to feel defeated. I wanted us to take on the challenge of making these clients have the party of their life. Another part of me may have wanted to make sure our DJs were working and there was fear that another booking may not come. And then there was another part of me that wanted to bring in the revenue.

As my DJ profile and demand has grown over the years, I’ve had the luxury of being able to pick and choose which clients are “the right fit” for me. If a client wasn’t a good fit, I’d send it down the chain to one of our other guys. That type of client didn’t really affect me as our other DJs had to deal with it and I masked it by saying, “It was good training” for them.

It hit in me in the face that I was being rather selfish. That started a process over the last few months of 2017 in identifying just who our ideal client was. I’ll share some of that with you.

Our ideal client:
*is between the age of 22-35
*is kind and generous
*is creative – loves uniqueness
*is cutting edge – enjoys social media and mobile apps, open to incorporating the latest and greatest
*Loves a variety of different music or at least has an appreciation for many different genres
*has an awareness that a DJ can make/break their event
*easily recognizes and appreciates value over low quality
*is willing to collaborate with us (there’s a mutual trust between us)
*has a crowd that loves to dance any chance they get
*communicates well and appreciates timely responses and reciprocates

That’s our Top 10 list. Once I identified our ideal client, it really put me (and our sales staff) in the driver’s seat and we found ourselves interviewing our clients just as much as they were interviewing us before taking on a job. There is still nervousness that I may lose out on revenue but the negatives of taking on a client that isn’t a fit completely outweigh any positives.

Back to the client I turned down…in a nutshell, they didn’t pass muster on 5 of the 10 on our list. It was enough of a warning sign for me that I knew this wasn’t the right client for us. I sent the client a contract anyway. However, when they came back with changes they wanted to see to the contract, it was like a little nudge from the heavens telling me to abort.

I spent some time thinking through how to communicate that I was going to rescind the contract offer; the last thing I wanted to do was for the planner to stop sending referrals (some of our best parties came from her). I talked to the planner first (over the phone) and she totally understood and even said she wished she had done the same. I tried calling the client twice but got v/m both times, so I drafted a nice email and sent it off. I never heard back. Again, more confirmation that I made the right call.

Have you ever had a trouble client? What have you done? It’s not a matter of if you’ll ever have one but when. If you take one thing away from post today, I would encourage you to identify your ideal client with no more than 10 bullet points. The process challenges you to real drill down. I think it will do wonders for your business. It has for mine.

Based out of NYC, DJ Brian Buonassissi is a successful internationally traveling DJ/MC specializing in luxury destination private events. He runs a multi-city mobile DJ/event business with offices in Southern California, Destin, FL and New York City. You can connect with him at brian@djbrianbofficial.com

New Pioneer’s DJM-REC recording app enables DJs to easily record mixes

Pioneer announced the DJM-REC today, a new app for iPhone and iPad which enables the easy recording and sharing of high-quality DJ mixes.

All types of DJs like to record their mixes in order to review performances and raise their profile via online sharing. However, it can be a stressful process. Connecting a recording device to the back of the mixer can be complicated work in a dark DJ booth, and adjusting the recording level to avoid clipping is also a troublesome task. Once the set is over, making a track list and uploading it to different online platforms along with the audio is a time-consuming chore.

DJM-REC solves all these problems, taking advantage of our experience in designing DJ Mixers including the club-standard DJM-900NXS2. The app offers simple connection, high-quality audio recording plus easy online sharing and streaming.

DJM-REC is available in the App Store at the price of $9.99 from 23rd January 2018.

You can try DJM-REC free for 30 days to get to know all of its features. Mixes recorded during the trial period will remain available for listening and sharing after the trial has ended. To continue recording and using all the app’s features after the trial period has ended, you can upgrade to the paid version.

DJM-REC compatible mixers are as follows: DJM-TOUR1, DJM-900NXS2, DJM-750MK2 and DJM-450

To use DJM-REC, update the mixer’s firmware to the latest version.

Find out more about DJM-REC.

KEY FEATURES OF DJM-REC

  • Simple connection to DJM series mixers

Install DJM-REC on your iPhone or iPad, then simply plug into any DJM mixer which has the digital send/return feature using a single USB cable. The port is on the top of the mixer rather than the back, so connecting is a breeze even in a dark DJ booth.

  • High-quality recording which minimizes clipping and distortion

DJM-REC can control the peak limiter in the DJM Mixer. Tap the button to enable this feature and alleviate digital clipping. Audio from a digital mixer can be recorded directly in digital format without the need for analogue conversion.

  • Easily share your mixes with the world

Effortlessly live stream your mix through YouTube, Facebook Live, Periscope, Instagram and Snapchat via DJM-REC. Easily upload your recorded mixes, digital recordings of your analogue tracks, and remixed tracks created using features and FX on DJM mixers to cloud services such as Mixcloud and Dropbox.

  • Auto time-stamp for effortless track list creation

Time-stamps for tracks are automatically created thanks to the information transmitted from the DJM mixer, such as the fader positions, to the app. The time-stamps are editable and making track lists is easy, as you can edit track information per time-stamp within the app.

  • Powerful club-standard sound, remastered easily

Swipe the Loudness slider on DJM-REC to easily increase audio pressure. Punchy, heavier, vibrant bass sound that can’t be obtained by simply raising the signal level of the low range is created when you swipe the Sub Bass slider, as this creates new signals based on the track’s input signals. Old tracks can be refreshed with a powerful club sound, just like the latest releases.

  • Other features
  • Recorded sound on your iPhone/iPad can be input into DJM series mixers using the digital send/return feature.
  • Analogue recording in the app is possible using the microphone function on an iPhone/iPad with an external microphone when your device isn’t connected to a DJM mixer.

DJM-REC Specifications

OS(iOS) iOS 8 or later
iPhone iPhone X, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6 Plus,

iPhone 7, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6,

iPhone 5s, iPhone SE

iPad 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 10.5-inch iPad Pro,

9.7-inch iPad Pro, iPad Air 2, iPad Air,

iPad mini 4, iPad mini 3, iPad mini 2,

iPad (5th generation)

Display Resolution Retina
Playable Files WAV(Sampling rate: 44.1/48 kHz, Bit depth: 24bit)

AAC (bit rate 64kbps, 128kbps, 192kbps, 256kbps, 320kbps)

 

Meet Pioneer’s DDJ-1000 controller

Pioneer has created a new DJ controller for dedicated use with their professional performance application, rekordbox dj. The 4-channel DDJ-1000 is designed to help you get the most from the new features coming to rekordbox dj following the release of the latest version of rekordbox (ver 5.1). The upgraded software will be available to download on 18th January 2018.

The DDJ-1000 offers the ideal solution if you want to play at events and party venues other than clubs thanks to its easy portability and brand-new user interface, which is similar to the familiar multi player/DJM club-standard set-up. Its professional features include full size jog wheels inherited from the CDJ-2000NXS2 with added On Jog Display so you can keep an eye on important track information without looking at your laptop. Bring creative flair to your mixes with 14 Beat FX and use the 16 multicolored Performance Pads (8 per deck) to trigger various features including Hot Cues, Pad FX and Keyboard Mode, which enables you to play a Hot Cue in different semitones. This allows you to improvise with sounds and create musical phrases as if you were playing on the keyboard of a synthesizer or other instrument.

The significantly updated version of rekordbox includes enhancements to the Related Tracks feature, adding more options for quickly finding tracks that are well matched with the one you’re playing. And the improved rekordbox dj Plus Pack brings new additions such as Automix, which uses the software’s upgraded track analysis to automatically and seamlessly mix tracks.

The DDJ-1000 will be available from mid-February at an MAP of $1,199. It comes with a bundled licence key for our professional DJ performance application rekordbox dj, worth $129.

Watch the DDJ-1000 introduction video or download rekordbox ver 5.1 for free from 18th January 2018. If you own a licence key for one of the rekordbox Plus Packs (rekordbox dj, video or dvs), you can upgrade to the new version of the Plus Pack for free.

KEY FEATURES OF THE DDJ-1000

  1. Portable DJ controller with club-style layout

All the buttons and knobs on the DDJ-1000 are arranged in the same layout as those on our club-standard CDJ-2000NXS2 and DJM-900NXS2 set-up. The jog wheels are inherited directly from the CDJ-2000NXS2, so they look and feel familiar to use. As a result, using rekordbox dj with the DDJ-1000 creates the same experience as playing from USB drives with a NXS2 set-up. The DJ controller is compact and portable, too, so you can easily take it wherever you go.

  1. Color On Jog Display for quick reference and accurate performances

A high-definition LCD screen in the centre of each jog wheel displays information such as playback time, BPM, waveform, playback position and Hot Cue and Loop points. You can customise the information you want to see, so there’s no need to look at your laptop during a mix or scratch routine.

  1. 14 Beat FX including new additions

The DDJ-1000 is loaded with all ten popular Beat FX from our DJM mixer series plus four new FX for adding creative flair and texture to your sets. You can instantly reference BPM and the name of the selected FX without looking at your laptop thanks to the dedicated Beat FX display.

New FX:

  • Enigma Jet, Mobius Saw, Mobius Triangle – FX that add sound with a feeling of infinite rising or descending
  • Low Cut Echo – echo-derived effect that cuts low frequencies of the echo sound
  1. Improved MAGVEL FADER

The DDJ-1000 features a new MAGVEL FADER crossfader, which inherits the design architecture of the renowned MAGVEL FADER PRO from the DJM-S9 professional battle mixer. Highly durable for more than 10 million movements, the new MAGVEL FADER enables complicated, intricate performances with a smooth feel. Plus, we’ve refined the software processing for jog wheel and crossfader operation to significantly reduce latency, so scratching feels more intuitive than ever.

  1. Multiple input/outputs enable different set-ups

DJ changeovers are a breeze for rekordbox dj users thanks to the two USB ports for PC/Mac. The DDJ-1000 has four external input terminals for DJ players and analog turntables, plus two Mic inputs. You can also use the DDJ-1000 as a stand-alone DJ mixer without connecting a PC/Mac.

  1. Other features
  • Multicolored Performance Pads – tactile illuminated rubber pads trigger Hot Cues, Pad FX, Beat Jump, Sampler, Keyboard Mode and more
  • Feeling adjust – customise the feeling of the jog wheel
  • Advanced Super-Fast Search – quickly reach any playback position
  • Page switch between Hot Cues 1-8 and 9-16
  • Key Shift and Key Sync buttons – direct control of rekordbox dj key-related features
  • Sound Color FX – enhance your sets with the four popular FX from the DJM mixers
  • Aluminum/acrylic-finished top panel – for a quality look and feel
  • Lightweight and portable
  • rekordbox dvs ready – requires the rekordbox dvs Plus Pack licence key and dedicated Control Vinyl (both available separately)

KEY FEATURES OF REKORDBOX VER 5.1

  1. Automix for smooth and natural automatic mixing

Drop tracks into an Automix playlist and rekordbox dj will mix them accurately and smoothly. Phrases in a track are now detected by the newly developed phrase analysis algorithm in the track analysis section of rekordbox’s KORETECH engine. In addition to the phrase information, Automix uses track information such as beat position, BPM and key to make mixes sound natural. You can scratch, apply FX and change the order of tracks during Automix.

  1. Advanced Related Tracks feature brings more detailed search criteria

The popular Related Tracks feature – which displays tracks that are well matched with the one you’re currently playing – has been significantly upgraded. You can easily find even more relevant tracks using increased search criteria such as artists, comments and file formats, and you can save your custom criteria and call it up at any time. This feature is highly useful for creating unique sets from tracks you might not have otherwise thought to mix together.

DDJ-1000 specifications

Frequency characteristic 20 Hz to 20 kHz (LINE)
S/N ratio 112 dB (USB)
Total Harmonic Distortion 0.002% (USB – MASTER1)
Input / Output Terminals

 

 

 

Inputs LINE/PHONO × 2 (RCA), LINE × 2(RCA)

MIC × 2(XLR & 1/4-inch TRS jack x 1, 1/4-inch TRS jack x 1)

Outputs MASTER × 2(XLR × 1, RCA x 1)

BOOTH OUT × 1(1/4-inch TRS jack)

PHONES × 2 (1/4-inch stereo jack × 1, 3.5-mm stereo mini-jack × 1)

USB USB (Type B) x 2
Maximum Dimensions (WxDxH) 708.0 × 361.4 × 73.4 mm
Weight 6.0 kg
Accessories AC adaptor, Power cord, USB cable

Quick Start Guide, rekordbox dj licence key card

System requirements

Compatible OS Mac macOS High Sierra 10.13 (Updated to the latest version) macOS Sierra 10.12 (Updated to the latest version)

OS X 10.11, 10.10 (Updated to the latest version)

Windows Windows® 10, 8.1, 7 (the latest service pack)
CPU Intel® processor Core™ i7, i5, i3

Intel® processor Core™ 2 Duo: 2.0GHz or above

Memory 4 GB or more of RAM

 

* Disclaimer: specifications and price are subject to change.

* rekordbox is a registered trademark of Pioneer DJ Corporation.

* KORETECH is a trademark of Pioneer DJ Corporation.

* Mac, OS X or macOS are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries.

* Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the US and other countries.

* Intel and Intel Core are registered trademarks of Intel Corporation in the US and other countries.

* The names of companies, product names and technology names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

 

The Pros and Cons of Pre-Made Sets

By Tony Fernandez:

So let’s talk about music. I know we’ve discussed different things and different aspects of music, but this time around, I’d like to bring attention to a particular aspect of our DJ music world — the sets or blocks of music that DJs seem to be constantly looking for, specifically, pre-made sets.

Allow me to put a finer point on it: I don’t mean sets, in the sense of theme. We ALL do that. We can be at any number of events and we can rifle through a set of 70’s, 80’s. 90’s, 00’s, classic rock, country, Top 40, Rap, etc. That’s part of our job. What I do mean is when you’re in your flow, you ALWAYS play Song A, Song B, Song C, and Song D, in THAT order, EVERY time.

I’ll admit right up front, I don’t get it. I don’t see the necessity or advantage of discovering, creating, and then utilizing pre-made sets for the next dozen gigs, or years, it seems.

On one hand, I do get that we are creatures of habit. We discover a chain of songs that when linked together create a great response from our floors. Then we may recycle that same “set” again if we get into a pinch. “It worked last week, so let’s give it another run…”   I even get that (usually) there are a new group of people, so the same set you ran last week, is new to the current group of people.

On the other hand, what I don’t get is why are DJs asking other DJs for their pre-made sets? Aren’t you supposed to be figuring out the music for EACH of your events/crowds? If we treat each event we do as a unique and singular event, then having pre-made sets kind of defeats the purpose of being a DJ.

While all of these other DJs are sharing their sets, why would anyone think someone else’s set would work for your crowd?

I have to concede to the fact: I realize and recognize that DJs are individuals. As such, their experience, knowledge, and skill level is going to be vast and wide. I’m sure not trying to filter these thoughts and questions through my personal filter. I don’t expect others to be as big of a music nerd as I am. I sure don’t expect people to mix and program the way I do. Nor do I expect others to just do it THIS way because that is the ONLY way.

On a slight tangent…that is one of the beautiful things about being a DJ. There is no ONE WAY to spin. I love reading DJ’s play logs and listening to other DJs spin a set to get ideas and inspiration. Not to mention maybe picking up a dope track or three that I may have slept on.

My point is this: Don’t be complacent. Be proactive in your music knowledge and your programming. Practice. Listen. Put yourself into scenarios where instead of doing homework, (no one likes doing homework) you’re opening your artistic side of your brain to new musical possibilities. The more you do this, the easier the ideas will come.

I have seen DJ friends and colleagues that became apathetic and unindustrious. They suffered over time because they became stale and predictable. They aren’t working. Don’t become the complacent DJ. Don’t be lethargic in your approach to discovering music. You may just elicit a creative side in your repertoire, and that would be a beautiful thing.

Keep ‘em spinning.

Based out of Richmond, VA, DJ Tony Fernandez has been a DJ, Remixer, Producer, Musical Soothsayer and Audio Gear Oracle since 1980. Find him on facebook. Email djtonytf@gmail.com

The True Cost of Music Piracy

By Glen Ervin:

As convenient as the interwebz has made getting the music you need, the low-cost and invisibility of the ‘net has led to an explosion of too good to be true offers from websites masquerading as legitimate record pools. Think of them as the modern day version of that guy in the alley selling “real” Rolexes out of the trunk of his El Dorado… with access to your hard drive.

Fortunately there are a few of ways to tell which sites are operating in the shadows; the easiest is to keep an eye out for those selling legacy releases. The labels don’t allow it (why give away your best sellers?). Hence, any site offering unlimited access to a legacy catalog is not partnered with the labels or paying the artists or labels who provide their music.

Why should you care? 

The Institute of Policy Innovation estimates that global music piracy causes $12.5 billion of economic losses every year. That breaks down domestically to 71,060 music industry jobs lost since the days of Napster — a loss of $2.7 billion in workers’ earnings that accounts for $291 million in personal income tax and $131 million in lost corporate income and production taxes.

That’s $422 million dollars that could be going towards schools, roads, libraries and more – gone.

Let’s put that in terms every mobile operator can understand…

Economic losses on a scale that’s followed by nine zeros impacts everything from how much you charge for a wedding to how much time you get to spend with your family (instead of wearing all the hats required to run your business) to the car you drive — not a problem, by the way, for the $19.99 all you can download guys who keep all your money and drive Range Rovers.

Which brings us back to our friend in the alley and his deals on wheels…

If it seems to good to be true… it is.

Give your money to some hustler looking to turn downloads into dollars at the artist’s expense and you’ll just be feeding the dog-eat-dog world that keeps us all working for less than we deserve.

It’s up to you to decide what’s need and what’s greed.

After being turned out to pasture following a 16-year club residency, Glen Ervin finds himself gainfully employed as Promo Only sales manager, media consultant and staff writer.

DJs and Streaming

By Tony Fernandez:

Alright kids, it seems to me that it’s been a little while since I’ve been on my soap box or have had a rant, so strap in, we’re all due. Let me begin with a small disclaimer… I’m not looking to kick a hornet’s nest or start a moral, much less a legal tirade. I’m coming from an angle of trying to understand the rational of streaming… and hopefully illicit some chuckles in the process.

Let’s begin….

The Internet is a splendid thing. There is no doubt about that. Wi-Fi and being untethered has opened up countless possibilities and opportunities. Advancements are made monthly at such a pace that what was just simply amazing last month, heck, last week is commonplace today.
Maybe I am a bit too old school. I came from a place where DJs actually have their music. I mean that quite literally. You physically have the music you’re going to play. In the current state we are in, I do understand “having” music means that you have music on a hard drive. But the point still remains: you have access to that file on demand. Because it lives on your hard drive.

So why is streaming a “thing”? I don’t get it. Like most people on the planet, a good chunk of my life is wrapped up in my cell phone. Having said that, I find myself not having the best signal everywhere I go. And I still experience the randomness of dropped calls. I get that cell phones signals are different than Wi-Fi signals, but I still surmise that if I can’t get a SOLID cell phone connection, why should I assume that my Wi-Fi signal is stable? And don’t tell me about hot spots. Again, no cell signal and your hot spot is a paperweight.

I also get that a good number of venues do offer Wi-Fi connection to vendors. Are you really ready to rely on a network that you’re not 100% certain is robust enough to handle the load? Is the network also open to the public? If that is the case, how does it work when you have 15, 25, 45 people on public Wi-Fi and you’re trying to download, much less, stream content and use said content in real time? I would assume not too well.

And this is where I begin to scratch my head….

With as much technology, CPU processor horsepower, RAM, etc., that hardware can harness, you’re placing your success on an unknown variable that offers you ZERO control. Think about it: You are trying to download, stream and play a decent size music file in REAL TIME.

We ask a lot of our computers and software. Granted, they are marketed as being able to handle pretty much anything thrown at it. But we know that’s just not true. When you turn on your computer and it’s just sitting there, it’s really running 20, 30, maybe even 40 other programs in the background. Some you can’t turn off. Then you launch your DJ software. So now you want the computer to run the OS and the DJ software, plus you want the system to manipulate chunks of data and convert those chunks of data from 1’s & 0’s to analog audio. All the while providing you a GUI and audio feed to monitor all of the manipulation in REAL TIME.

Now you want to open up a network connection, get on the internet, log into a service, search a data base, download/stream the content you found and integrate that content seamlessly in real time to the gig you’re DJaying.

Right…

I know I’m not going to stop progress and I’m not trying to. Nor am I trying to be a harbinger of technology potentially gone awry. Each DJ will find their own level of technological prowess and embrace it. Speaking for myself, I know I’m NOT going to tax my computer any more than I have to. Nor am I going to set myself up for relying on a cell/ Wi-Fi signal that may not be there when I REALLY need it.

Till next time DJs. I’m still waiting for the Wi-Fi here to come back on line so I can pay for my pizza and go home. Gotta love technology.

Based out of Richmond, VA, DJ Tony Fernandez has been a DJ, Remixer, Producer, Musical Soothsayer and Audio Gear Oracle since 1980. Find him on facebook. Email djtonytf@gmail.com

Communication is Key: Creating Connections w/ Mitch TayloR

By Mitch Taylor:

I don’t know about you but at the age of 42 I find it increasingly difficult to communicate with today’s millennial brides, the majority of who tend to prefer to communicate via email. My assistant (a 24-year-old millennial herself) and I had occasion to discuss this the other day after a bridal show and were amazed that some businesses still use very formal language to communicate with young brides — only to be left wondering why they get no response.

Speak to a prospective bride just as she is speaking to you.  If she’s using short sentences with basic language, do the same. If she mentions descriptive words about her event use those same words in your reply.

Here’s an example of an email recently received and how we handled it to get the appointment:

Hello I am just getting ideas and prices at the moment and I was wondering around what your average pricing would be I would also like the uplighting also an email would prob be the best way to respond thanks for your time.

Amber

My response:

Hi!  How’s your wedding planning going?  I got your email regarding entertainment and uplighting for your wedding.  I attached a photo above to show you examples of our work and how we can transform your venue too.  Feel free to call me anytime and let’s talk about your day.  906.786.6967.  Thanks for contacting me and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 Mitch

Bride’s Reply:

I am sorry I have gotten your calls but been busy working.  At this time we are going to go with a live band from 8-12.  I am looking to rent uplighting (for the whole night of the reception) and also entertainment from 4:00pm-8pm.  Not many have been willing to do that time slot since it is Labor Day weekend.  Please let me know

My response:

Hi Amber,

Sure…we can do that.  When’s a good time for us to get together to chat about your wedding?

Bride’s Reply:

I work in Marquette at Lowe’s.  My next days off are Monday and Tuesday.  I have a cake appointment in Marquette on Monday at 12pm.  Where are you located and what is a good time for you?

My reply:

Hi Amber,

What about Monday at 1:30pm?  Would that work?

Bride’s Reply:

Yes I think that would work.  What is the best phone number to get a hold of you in case I need too?  I have a cake appointment a 12:00 so I will be in town.

 My next response was to send her an email confirming that date and time with an appointment reminder from DJ Event Planner.

Bottom line: Brides want to do business with someone who understands what they want, gives them the information they need in a timely fashion connects with them.

Be real. Be honest. But most importantly be relatable. Speak to them the same way through email as you would over the phone.

About: Mitch Taylor owns and operates Taylored Weddings and can be reached via email at mitch@mitchtaylor.net. For more info about his Creating Connections books and workshops visit creatingconnections.biz

 

Deeper Connection: Meet Pioneer’s new HDJ over-ear headphone models

Pioneer DJ has designed a new range of DJ headphones, the HDJ-X10, HDJ-X7 and HDJ-X5. The HDJ-X models offer a brand-new experience that will be sure to impress and suit every DJ.

The new flagship HDJ-X10 headphones are designed for professional DJs to use at clubs and festivals. Built to withstand the rigours of the road, they’re comfortable to wear for long sets. Also, they allow you to hear frequencies other DJ headphones can’t reproduce so you can make a deeper connection with the music and the dance floor.

Thanks to their HD drivers,1 the HDJ-X10 headphones are the world’s first DJ headphones to produce high-resolution sound ranging from 5 Hz to 40 kHz.2 When connected to our flagship TOUR1 set up or the NXS2 set up, you can experience up to 96 kHz/24-bit high-resolution audio reproduction with superb clarity and sound separation. In another world first for DJ headphones,3 the ear pads and headband on the HDJ-X10 model are protected from sweat and dirt by water repellent nano coating. This means you can keep your headphones looking fresh and easily prolong their lifespan with regular cleaning.

The HDJ-X7 headphones are based on our previous flagship model, the HDJ-2000MK2, and are equipped with newly developed drivers, while the HDJ-X5 headphones inherit high-quality audio design from the model above, giving you clean monitoring even at high volumes.

Whichever way you prefer to wear your headphones, you can comfortably use any HDJ-X model for long periods of time thanks to the flexible swivel mechanism and housing that have been designed with input from professional DJs. They’re built to be highly robust, too, with all models having cleared the US Military Standard MIL-STD-810G Shock test,4 as well as our stringent in-house durability tests.

The new headphones will be available from mid-September at the following MAPs:

 

HDJ-X10-K_prm_angle_low_0807-848x848

HDJ-X10: $349

HDJ-X7-K_prm_hero_low_0807-848x848

HDJ-X7: $199

HDJ-X5-K_prm_folding_low_0807-848x848

HDJ-X5: $99

Watch our introduction video or find out more about the HDJ-X models and accessories.

KEY FEATURES OF THE HDJ-X MODEL HEADPHONES

 

  1. Outstanding sound
  • High-quality audio design

The HDJ-X10 headphones are equipped with our new 50-mm HD driver, making them the world’s first DJ headphones to reproduce high-resolution sound from 5 Hz to 40 kHz. The direct drive structure, with a newly developed diaphragm shape and voice coil, delivers high-quality sound without loss of quality due to mechanic loss. Creating rich bass notes and clean mid-to-high frequencies, the flagship headphones enable accurate point source monitoring, even at loud volumes, and allow you to make a deeper connection to the music.

The HDJ-X7 headphones provide the same audio experience as the professional HDJ-2000MK2 model and feature a newly developed 50-mm driver. The shape and materials of the new diaphragm are optimized to create tight bass notes and clean high frequencies so you can enjoy accurate monitoring.

The HDJ-X5 headphones feature a new 40-mm driver with copper-clad aluminium wire (CCAW) voice coils. The magnetic circuit is optimised and, thanks to fine noise suppression and elaborate tuning, you can enjoy clear, distortion-free sound for easy monitoring.

  • 4-core twisted-structure cable

The independent ground wire in the 4-core twisted-structure cable gives superior left and right channel separation, improving sound quality. In addition, the HDJ-X10 model features a highly reliable, detachable mini-XLR connector for outstanding sound quality.

  • Bass reflex chamber

The bass reflex chamber in the upper housing ensures excellent bass response and sound insulation.

  1. Superior durability
  • Rigorously tested

Take the HDJ-X model headphones on the road and feel confident they’ll handle severe conditions and heavy use. Each model has cleared the US Military Standard MIL-STD-810G Shock test, as well as our own demanding stress testing. 

  • Highly durable materials and construction

Durable metal is used in the moving parts of both the HDJ-X10 and the HDJ-X7 headphones to create a strong construction.

  • Water repellent nano coating

Keep your headphones looking fresh for longer. The leather ear pads and headband cushion on the HDJ-X10 headphones are resistant to deterioration thanks to the use of nano coating, a world first for DJ headphones, so you can easily wipe off sweat and dirt.

  1. Improved functionality
  • Suited for all monitoring styles

While we’re developing any new product we create numerous prototypes, each time with new improvements based on the feedback of professional DJs who test the equipment. Using this feedback and the results of our analysis of many different styles of monitoring, we’ve made sure the HDJ-X headphones are comfortable to use no matter how you wear them. The housing design reduces pressure on your head and it’s textured on the outside for enhanced grip, so you can quickly grab it and start listening.

  • Comfortable and flexible headband

To help you find the perfect fit, the HDJ-X headphones feature a flexible, durable headband. Passing our stringent test to open and close 20,000 times, it’s built to withstand intense use.

  • Features inherited from HDJ-2000 models

As successors to the HDJ-2000 models, the HDJ-X headphones inherit popular professional features such as flexible swivels to enable comfortable monitoring however you wear them. The housing on the HDJ-X10 model incorporates an auto-return mechanism so the rotated housing automatically resets to its neutral position when you release it.

  1. Other features
  • Replacement parts available

You can easily renew the detachable cables and ear pads on all HDJ-X headphones using replacement parts (available separately). Each model comes with its own cable and the HDJ-X7 and HDJ-X5 models have a mutually compatible bayonet connector, so you can purchase an alternative cable type if you prefer (available separately). Replacement ear pads for the HDJ-X10 and HDJ-X7 are available and either set can be fitted to any of the HDJ-X models, including the HDJ-X5.

  • Solid, refined design

All the HDJ-X headphones feature a refined look and durable construction. The HDJ-X10 and HDJ-X7 models are finished in a metallic design incorporating aluminium spin processing and diamond cutting to the housings, which shine under club and stage lighting. Choose from black or silver versions to complete your desired look.

  • Excellent portability

When you’re travelling to gigs, you can be confident your HDJ-X10 headphones will be well protected in the included flat carrying case. Made from strong materials to protect your headphones from bumps and knocks on flights and in transit, the case has inner pockets for storing accessories such as USB devices and SD cards, and its handle makes carrying easy. The HDJ-X7 and HDJ-X5 both come with a compact carrying pouch, which snugly fits around the folded headphones to save space in your luggage and reduce the risk of damage on the road.

  • Various accessories included

The HDJ-X10 and HDJ-X7 headphones come with two detachable cables: a 1.2 m coiled cable (approximately 3.0 m when extended) and a 1.6 m straight cable. The HDJ-X5 model comes with a 1.2 m short coiled cable (approximately 1.8 m when extended) that’s ideal for both DJ performances and everyday listening. An L-type mini-jack prevents the connection from being knocked or accidentally disconnected during performances, even in cramped booths.

  • 2-year warranty

To guarantee long-term, reliable performance, we include a 2-year warranty with all HDJ-X model headphones.

1 High definition driver.

2 First headphones in the world to reproduce frequencies from 5 Hz to 40 kHz in the DJ headphones market (according to research conducted by Pioneer DJ Corporation Ltd, 21st August 2017).

3 First headphones in the world to feature nano coating in the DJ headphones market (according to research conducted by Pioneer DJ Corporation Ltd, 21st August 2017).

4 MIL-STD-810G METHOD 516.7 SHOCK compliant. 

HDJ-X model headphones specifications

【 HDJ-X10 specifications】

Type Closed, Dynamic
Frequency response 5 Hz to 40,000 Hz
Impedance 32 Ω
Sensitivity 106 dB
Maximum input power 3,500 mW
Driver φ 50 mm
Connection cord 1.2 m coiled cable (extended length 3.0 m)

1.6 m straight cable

Weight 328 g (without cable)
Accessories ø6.3 mm stereo plug adapter (threaded type)

Carrying case

【 HDJ-X7 specifications】

Type Closed, Dynamic
Frequency response 5 Hz to 30,000 Hz
Impedance 36 Ω
Sensitivity 102 dB
Maximum input power 3,500 mW
Driver φ 50 mm
Connection cord 1.2 m coiled cable (extended length 3.0 m)

1.6 m straight cable

Weight 312 g (without cable)
Accessories ø6.3 mm stereo plug adapter (threaded type)

Carrying pouch

【 HDJ-X5 specifications】

Type Closed, Dynamic
Frequency response 5 Hz to 30,000 Hz
Impedance 32 Ω
Sensitivity 102 dB
Maximum input power 2,000 mW
Driver φ 40 mm
Connection cord 1.2 m short coiled cable (extended length 1.8 m)
Weight 269 g (without cable)
Accessories ø6.3 mm stereo plug adapter (threaded type)

Carrying pouch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Tips To Guarantee A Great Event

By Brian Buonassissi

I know this seems like quite the guarantee, but for years I have lived by these 5 tips and I can’t remember the last bad event I had. If you don’t do these five things you put yourself behind the eight ball. Since I do a ton of weddings, I’m going to tailor this post towards that, but it could really work for any private event.

Tip #1: I WANNA KNOW, I WANNA KNOW… Doing your homework before the event is critical. I could spend hours on this one tip. What I mean here is that you need to know everything you possibly can about the event (which means asking a ton of the right questions) — where your clients and their guests are from, make‐up of their crowd (college friends? first time both sides of the family are meeting?), what your clients like/dislike about weddings they’ve seen/been to, a site inspection of the venue, the hot buttons of the vendors you’re working with, equipment you’re using, and the music/mixes you’re going to play are all just a few of the many questions I ask. For the last one, I don’t necessarily mean come in with a prepared set-list, but never play a mix of a song (or any song in general) that you’ve never heard or played before. That used to burn me in my early DJing days more than I care to admit.

 

Tip #2: BACK THAT THANG UP… I can’t emphasize enough how important multiple backups are: I have all my formality tracks on 3 different backups (iPad, Phone, and thumb drive); I carry a duplicate external hard drive with all my music; I travel with 2 computers. I am over the top on this on so many levels. You don’t get a do‐over for private events (especially weddings). Having as many fail‐safes as possible is just smart business. It’s not a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when’ you will need to use one.

 

As I like to say, the event is often won or lost before you arrive.

 

Tip #3: BUT I’M ALWAYS ON TIME… This is about giving yourself a wide margin for error. By getting to the venue on time, I mean get there early – WAYYYY early (for me, I arrive a minimum of 4‐5 hours before the event). From not having to rush on set‐ up, to being able to test and check all gear, to rehearsing your important moments, playing through every formality track in its entirely, to putting your event planner/Maître D’ (and potentially the clients) at ease, this is just a best practice.

 

Tip #4: WORK, WORK, WORK, WORK WORK… In a perfect world, I would just mix my favorite tracks and the dance floor would be packed all night. Since we’re talking weddings, the dance floor would start during cocktail hour and it would be hard for them to stay seated for the meal because the music is that good. That happens at a lot of my events but not ALL of them. I have had a few tough ones. Sometimes it means I must go to a genre that I don’t particularly like or I may even have to go into cheese mode (assuming the client wants it). I never let my personal preference take precedence over what’s best for the event. I’ll keep grinding and do whatever it takes until I find the right formula for my crowd.

 

Tip #5: P P P POKER FACE, P P P POKER FACE… Playing off the tip above, let’s say your event is going terrible. Maybe your crowd is just a non‐dancing crowd or you just can’t seem to please anyone with the song selection. You’ve put in a ton of work but it’s just not happening. What’s the remedy? Smile and look confident – like you know exactly what you’re doing and that you meant for it to be like this. Never let the crowd know you’re struggling. Show that poker face. Make them believe you’re having a great time (even if it’s killing you inside) and often, it’ll get them out there. If nothing else, I’ve found it makes me feel better about the event at hand.

 

I’m going to post a Part 2 to this because there are many more things that I believe can ensure a great event. The ones above are the foundation. Follow them and you’re on your way to success.

 

Based out of NYC, DJ Brian B is a successful internationally traveling DJ/MC specializing in luxury private events. He runs a multicity mobile DJ/event business with offices in Southern California, Destin, FL and New York City. You can check him out at djbrianbofficial.com or bboyproductions.com