The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Old Skool chat, tune discussions.
No tape packs or mix tape posts in the forum please!
User avatar
RonWellsJS
Oldskool Raver
Oldskool Raver
Posts: 528
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:09 am
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by RonWellsJS » Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:36 pm

rage wrote: What happens when you are mixing two tracks with something musical going on at the time you need to make the adjustment? There is no way you are going to make that stealth adjustment without it being audiable.
Do you not just adjust the one that isn't doing something musical?

... because if both tracks are doing something musical they have to be in the same (or compatible) key and be in tune with each other, or the sum of their parts isn't going to sound nearly as good as it could, regardless of how they are mixed.

By adjusting the pitch control you are still altering the tuning of the track and therefore altering it's musical (mathematical) relationship with the other track.

I appreciate what you're saying, using the pitch control alone is more difficult, because you could easily loose your reference point, but it does not negate the above.

I'll quieten down and run along now because I don't want piss anyone off.

:-)

rage
Old Skool Don Daddy
Old Skool Don Daddy
Posts: 3037
Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2002 2:38 pm
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by rage » Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:50 pm

Haha not at all, its an interesting conversation.

Its very common to find tracks that are musically in key, these days I leave mixes in as long as I can if it sounds good and often have two musical parts going. What happens then? You are screwed and its the curse of every DJ who touches the vinyl (myself included). I guess you could liken it to using a sledgehammer to crack a nut, if you pitch chase you are of course mathematically adjusting the pitch, but it is so delicate you cant actually hear it. When you bring your hand into direct contact with the vinyl or platter, even the most delicate touch vastly changes the pitch suddenly in comparison. Of course "it'll do" but it leads to all those mix tapes where you have the one mix that didn't quite work that annoys you every time you listen to it.

User avatar
dj jedi
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 10142
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2001 12:00 am
Location: London
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by dj jedi » Mon Nov 23, 2015 3:59 pm

There are of course DJs that were very bad at it, but you can do it subtly as Ron mentions without it sounding ridiculous.

There's no real right or wrong answer to how you should mix, there's lots of different techniques and all can be done well or badly.

User avatar
Restless
Old Skool Don Daddy
Old Skool Don Daddy
Posts: 3447
Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 4:53 pm

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by Restless » Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:13 pm

dj jedi wrote:As per my post above though, he never has it bang on, his hand never leaves the pitch control. It's the mixing equivalent of driving in a zig zag rather than a straight line. Yes he has the skill to keep it in time, but personally I much prefer to know I have 2 tracks 'locked' and can leave them for 30+ seconds without interfering. That looks like far too much work!

By the way I'm not dissing Andy C or claiming I'm better, but he is how all pro DJs should be - they get paid a fortune and DJ for hours every day, they should be brilliant at it. Most of us probably only mix a few hours a month, if that.
I've never heard anyone go "all out" for a mix for Mixmag, in Andy's defence. Only heard Erol Alkan do so for a cover CD of their's in 2006. Absolutely MINDBLOWING mix.

But I'd recommend Andy C's Nightlife 3. AIRTIGHT mixing. It's f*cking seamless in all honesty.

I do think that Andy is on the slide now though (hard to believe!). I mean his consistency has been LEGENDARY. From 2001-2011/12 is unreal. To actually keep getting better and tighter after 10-12 years as a DJ is something that rarely happens as the passions usually wanes and boredom kicks in by then, but boy god did he do it.
It's like Carl Cox: He keeps on getting tighter and better! When he's poor he's dreadful, but when he has that second wind and goes through his good stages, he's f*cking unreal with it.

Ron - You're a clown, mate. Show me your vinyl-only mixes where the beats are locked for minutes. I'm in need of a laugh... cue *Oh I don't play techno or prog or music where the tunes isn't longer than 4-6 mins*.

The same people that say beat-matching is easy usually don't have a decent lock. To just get them matched evenly isn't enough, it's needs to be AIRTIGHT. Tight as in it can't get any tighter!

rage - Are you for real? It's NEVER about pitch-chasing! Have it locked before you bring it in for the final time or the clangs will happen, fact. Why would you even bother to bring in a tune when it's not locked? Either work on your lock or make the mix work in another part of the track.

rage
Old Skool Don Daddy
Old Skool Don Daddy
Posts: 3037
Joined: Wed Jun 05, 2002 2:38 pm
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by rage » Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:28 pm

Why are you calling one of the most accomplished producers in this scene a clown? Have a bit of respect, everyone is entitled to an opinion.

Also, you have completely misunderstood what I was saying. Work on my lock! How about you go work on how to not be so patronising.
Last edited by rage on Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:36 pm, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
RonWellsJS
Oldskool Raver
Oldskool Raver
Posts: 528
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:09 am
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by RonWellsJS » Mon Nov 23, 2015 5:31 pm

I think if you are slowing the track down the spindle technique would be as good as using pitch, subtle spindle pressure could/would/should alter pitch in a stealth manner... speeding up however, it is harder to achieve stealth that way, but not impossible.

Alex Hazzard used to use at least 3 different, concurrent methods.

I used to touch the platter for fast, big corrections when 'pre aligning' and then use the spindle when the fader was in. Our rule was never move the fader in until you've got them syncd within the minutest percentage of drift, making the rest of the job easy.

... everyone has their preference.

:-)

User avatar
RonWellsJS
Oldskool Raver
Oldskool Raver
Posts: 528
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2011 11:09 am
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by RonWellsJS » Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:03 pm

Restless wrote: Ron - You're a clown, mate. Show me your vinyl-only mixes where the beats are locked for minutes. I'm in need of a laugh... cue *Oh I don't play techno or prog or music where the tunes isn't longer than 4-6 mins*.
LOL, you've really got a problem with me haven't you.

Even after 25 years of not owning decks I would expect to be able to mix tracks for several minutes, why even make a deal of it? Can't you do it or something? It doesn't make sense why this has become an issue for you.

Want to bring some decks to my house and have me show you? If it would make you happy - and hopefully a little more courteous - you are very welcome to do so - or you could just ask; Carl Cox, Loft Groover, Alex Hazzard, Phantasy, Spencer T... all of whom will furnish you with the answer you're (not) looking for.

You need to understand that I was mixing House music on inferior JVC turntables at the age of 15, that was back in 1985. You also need to understand that I don't DJ because I do not want to, I decline paid requests to DJ, how often do you decline paid DJ work?

You seem to go into meltdown when someone suggests that DJs aren't the saviours of the universe, why should they be?

I don't want to fall out with you (and I haven't yet) but you really ought to think first and type later, in this cyberspace, social skills are what define you.

:-)

User avatar
Traffic Cone
The Messiah of the 21st Century
The Messiah of the 21st Century
Posts: 8538
Joined: Fri May 06, 2005 5:56 pm
Location: London

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by Traffic Cone » Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:33 pm

i do sometimes suspect that the skill involved in being a vinyl DJ is often elevated so much is because it's a scene where the DJ was always so important, much more than the people who actually make the music. which doesn't really make sense - so that's why we all have to pretend that DJs are doing something that's actually really difficult, on a part with other musicians.

but they aren't. that's not to say there's no skill in managing to master it...and especially mastering it in "live" conditions, in a club with a terrible set up or people trying to get your attention. but compared to you know, actually making the music rather than just playing it - or even turntablism - it's an easy skill, surely.

or am i just saying that because i can't do it? :roll: i've managed it sometimes, although not that consistently...but i'm just playing for myself so i'm not really that bothered. i don't even have working headphones for my decks at the moment :lol:

but regardless...even if i'm shit that doesn't mean what i'm saying isn't true.

dial1
Regular
Regular
Posts: 81
Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 4:17 am

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by dial1 » Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:54 pm

I struggle to understand why anyone would even touch the spindle/platter or even the vinyl. This is not knocking anyone, it just feels so counterproductive. You don't even need to look at anything when you're using the pitch control (I would know because I'm visually impaired.)

Just take one finger and place at the original pitch position and that way you can work around and get your tunes locked for minutes. takes less than 20 seconds if you do it right and you don't have to worry about your tune going out of sync. Unless it's a tune like hardfloor's acperience 1 where the beats slightly speed up after the breakdown.

Sure, it takes practice, but everything does.

People who expect people to play on nackered turntables are doing their crowds a massive disservice and no, it's not all for the love, maaan. The world doesn't operate according to daft hippie principles. It's one reason why I digitised all my vinyl and play off cd, if ever.

My technique is to mix a tune in, and then without pause, start cuing and locking the other one. That way I have plenty of time to cut it in and out. Even if there's a breakdown in the tune I mixed into, I don't wait for it to be over and start mixing. cuing and locking always first, even if it makes me look like someone crazed on speed.
Last edited by dial1 on Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Richruffcut
Oldskool Raver
Oldskool Raver
Posts: 401
Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:41 pm
Location: b town down south uk

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by Richruffcut » Mon Nov 23, 2015 6:55 pm

LOL, you've really got a problem with me haven't you.
I don't think it's just you:)

User avatar
Richruffcut
Oldskool Raver
Oldskool Raver
Posts: 401
Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:41 pm
Location: b town down south uk

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by Richruffcut » Mon Nov 23, 2015 7:01 pm

God my 1210s are so battered you can't leave them alone pitch or by hand.

When i go round my mates for a mix (1210s) once your in they stay in for the hole mix or even the hole record if you wanted to do that.

Just shows it depends on the equipment used

djdeeenbee
Regular
Regular
Posts: 146
Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 6:08 pm

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by djdeeenbee » Mon Nov 23, 2015 8:45 pm

Don't post on here often but just wanted to get my opinion in as I feel the art of pitch riding is a dying art.

I'm 21 and alot of the people I see DJing nowadays usually adjust the pitch to the right bpm on the CDJs (Technics are pretty much extinct at events I DJ at Uni) before they even press play. If not, they use master tempo (which I think sounds wank) so you can't hear them touching the jog wheel.

Anyway, I think pitch chasing is still the most effective way on CDJs, for me anyway, especially for mixing a track in quickly. You can be chasing the pitch fader while moving the channel fader up. Also, even on my knackered 1210s at home, I can manage to pull off decent sounding mixes as long as I keep my hand on the pitch.

Not sure how relevant this is, more of a moan at the people who use sync/pre pitch these days! Guess it's my own opinion and all that.

User avatar
dj jedi
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 10142
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2001 12:00 am
Location: London
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by dj jedi » Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:55 pm

I think this is getting a bit out of hand :lol: nobody said pitch chasing is the 'wrong' way to do it, just as I don't believe touching the platter is the wrong way to do it either. There are many techniques, all with their pros and cons.

Just as touching the platter/record can affect the sound, you can't argue with the 'science' that dictates to pitch chase a record that is behind, you have to make it faster than the target track, so in other words not synced. That's a fact, yes some DJs are very good at it, but the second they take their hand off the pitch, it all goes Pete Tong because it's only vaguely at the correct pitch. And vinyl decks with their analogue pitch control are not 100% precise, so if you move it you'll never get it back in exactly the same position again. Unlike CD decks that tell you exactly what pitch it's at, to within 0.1%.

But like I said, everyone has their own way of doing it with varying degrees of success, I'm sure nobody here would claim to be a perfect DJ but at least with vinyl there is skill involved however you do it.

djdeeenbee
Regular
Regular
Posts: 146
Joined: Fri Nov 09, 2007 6:08 pm

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by djdeeenbee » Mon Nov 23, 2015 10:26 pm

dj jedi wrote:
But like I said, everyone has their own way of doing it with varying degrees of success, I'm sure nobody here would claim to be a perfect DJ but at least with vinyl there is skill involved however you do it.
I never meant that I thought any way was wrong or right, was more about this! Vinyl has more skill, but mainly because it's too easy on CD decks to just sync it these days. I think it just looks boring when someone doesn't manually mix, CD decks or vinyl to be honest. Where's the satisfaction?

User avatar
lixx
Regular
Regular
Posts: 149
Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2003 5:17 pm
Location: Buffalo NY
Contact:

Re: The state of DJ'ing nowadays...

Post by lixx » Tue Nov 24, 2015 6:53 pm

With vinyl it's all just training your ear to instantly know what is off pitch wise (if anything) and instantly knowing how to correct it. How you do this is all a matter of personal preference. I do a little of both (touch vinyl and adjust pitch). Trick is really just to have it synched right to begin with and that just comes with practice. I mean I'm not saying I'm some super DJ but I can usually just go on memory as to what pitch tunes need to be based on my own dj style. I always start mixes at +3 or so just to give myself room to maneuver because I loathe going into what I call the red zone (0 pitch) because I never like to get into the minus zone lol

Also proper phrasing is essential for long mixes. I mean mixing should not be a mechanical point A meets point B kind of thing but to carry a long mix (something I love to do) you have to start at the right mix point (after a break etc). Oldskool is a pain sometimes because things aren't always paint by numbers or off beat. I know I hate pads with beats at the end of records. Can throw things out of key real quick.

Side Note: The music Andy C is playing in that video clip makes me want to shoot myself in the head. AND is Andy C Andrew Lincoln's (from Walking Dead) long lost brother?

Locked