Formal Education For DJs
Career Path : Arts and Entertainment
When you think of a DJ you may not immediately think of school, but a formal education can only help you in your endeavors. Being a DJ is not only about spinning music, it also entails several other job functions that a formal education can help you achieve.
- Pumping up the crowd
- Music selection based on event and attendee music preference
- Organizing playlists
- Familiarity with appropriate technology/computers
- Ability to troubleshoot and fix problems on the spot
- Being able to mix and transition songs
Most people think that all a DJ does is play music, but there is so much in that seemingly simple task that usually isn’t understood. The music has to be appropriate for the venue and music should be preselected and organized with room to make changes as needed. Rappers usually have a hype man on stage during concerts, but you’ll most likely have to be your own. You need to also be familiar with the appropriate technology and equipment such as computers, music software, turntables, and headphones.
Most importantly (after song choice of course) is transitioning between songs and mixing. Attending a program will equip you with the knowledge you need to further your career, especially if you want to take it further than parties and events.
If you are interested in becoming a broadcast disc jockey, there are few other skills you should have as well.
- Production knowledge and/or experience
- Ability to conduct interviews and public speaking
- Intriguing voice and persona
- Ability to write scripts if needed
As a broadcast DJ, a formal education is even more important because you tend to have a farther reach, especially if you are on a syndicated show. You may be producing your own show or doing some of the writing. Interviews are a normal part of a broadcast DJ’s duties and the ability to speak and grab an audience’s attention is important.
By choosing formal education you will obtain all this information and more. Of the information that will assist you in your endeavor as a DJ, audio courses are the most significant. Information such as mixing and audio compression are par for the course as a DJ.
Even more specific, disc jockeys should also have knowledge of copyright law, lighting, and an appreciation for music is essential. You can’t just play the music you like, your job is to entertain a crowd.
You are truly the life of the party and basically keep it going. More than a music player, you wear many hats as a DJ. There are many aspects of being a DJ that school can’t teach such as creativity and having an outgoing personality, but for everything else consider schooling and a formal education. Attending DJ school and taking audio courses can give you an edge over other disc jockeys who might only have experience. Equipped with both, your career as a DJ can flourish.
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