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Old 14-02-2012, 01:25 AM   #41
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

This is awesome, I've been wondering about this for a long time actually haha

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Old 06-03-2012, 05:39 AM   #42
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

Awesome thread. This is the one thing I wish there was more information about... i mean, i could study online tutorials, learn common techniques from others on forums and elsewhere, 'til i'm blue in the face with a conformist half-wit, but it's ridiculously hard to find comprehensive information on how to promote yourself, how to find a gig, how to introduce yourself to the right people at parties, etc.

It's because this information probably depends on each person's individual experience. But i'd love to hear more if people feel like sharing.
My own two cents: only thing i know is that it takes 2 basic things, patience and perseverance.
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Old 06-03-2012, 12:22 PM   #43
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

The pied piper rules OK!
I go regularly to the Notting Hill Arts club (it's no secret I love it) to see a multitude of live bands and DJs and would recommend the venue to anyone, the best DJs I've seen are simply the ones that really love what they play and express it in their body language and performance, seeing them enjoy the music really encourages the crowd to let go! it's infectious in a very natural way... anyone can throw a few tunes together but feeling the vibe of the room, taking a flat space and creating a atmosphere in whatever type or sytle of music is a wonderful skill that I guess... you can learn but ultimately intuition and sensitivity is a powerful demanding tool if the conductor is prepare to loose him or herself and follow the flow!
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Old 06-03-2012, 01:04 PM   #44
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

Very interesting stuff.

I'm at a weird spot myself. I've been booked twice for shows in that were supposed to happen in the past too months that ended up getting cancel. The first show the promoter backed out on me four days before the show. The other time the club I was booked for had to shut down for a week due to damages and repairs.
The show that got cancel due to repair was postponed and I'm still set to play the same timeslot.

I got to this point through tons of networking and seeking out the right people. The first show I got booked, because a small production company saw my soundcloud and the mixes I have posted. They found me, because I followed their companies soundcloud. The promoter actually contacted me through soundcloud originally and then through email.

The second booking was through the electronic music club of Ohio State University. Where I met some DJs who were already established in the Columbus Ohio club scene. Through the DJs I met there i was able to book a show with them.


On a different note, you have to understand the situation that you will be playing in. You have to take note of the Timeslot you are playing as well as the kind of music the crowd is looking to hear. For example, if you are the first DJ playing for a dubstep night you don't want rip it up with some heavy ass excision right of the bat. People are just getting there so you have work your way into more energetic stuff. Also the job of the first DJs and openers is to slowly bring the energy level up for the main act.

the more experienced DJs I've talked to have told me. matching the mood and timeslot right will get you noticed by other DJs, Club owners, and promoters, which ups your chances of getting booked again.

Last edited by Stereo Surgeon; 06-03-2012 at 01:27 PM..

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Old 14-03-2012, 05:57 PM   #45
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

Lot of good info in this thread and it's inspired me to get my DJ set together (which is going pretty well so far!)

But I have one question: I come from a musician background and so i've felt like when I'm DJing, I'd want to be playing SOMETHING live at least part of the time. But I've also heard that some guys just plug in the computer/iPod/whatever and just play the set from there and dance around and act like they're doing something. So I guess my question is, what do you guys DO while onstage? Sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question.
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Old 14-03-2012, 08:11 PM   #46
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by DoctaMario View Post
Lot of good info in this thread and it's inspired me to get my DJ set together (which is going pretty well so far!)

But I have one question: I come from a musician background and so i've felt like when I'm DJing, I'd want to be playing SOMETHING live at least part of the time. But I've also heard that some guys just plug in the computer/iPod/whatever and just play the set from there and dance around and act like they're doing something. So I guess my question is, what do you guys DO while onstage? Sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question.
It depends on the definition of Djing. For instance, I come from the same background, and I'm gonna play a gig at the beginning of April.
It's gonna be completely live, meaning that I'll have individual clips for the tracks and arrange and mix them live. Plus, there are going to be other instruments improvising, and I'll arrange everything accordingly. I don't call this djing, though, but rather electronic live set. It also depends on what is the occasion, really...

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Old 14-03-2012, 10:56 PM   #47
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by DoctaMario View Post
Lot of good info in this thread and it's inspired me to get my DJ set together (which is going pretty well so far!)

But I have one question: I come from a musician background and so i've felt like when I'm DJing, I'd want to be playing SOMETHING live at least part of the time. But I've also heard that some guys just plug in the computer/iPod/whatever and just play the set from there and dance around and act like they're doing something. So I guess my question is, what do you guys DO while onstage? Sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question.
Depends on the context, at house parties I may cheat a bit and combine pre-made sets by mixing them with vinyls, etc. (simply because I may want to actually enjoy the party a bit as well ). In a club, all live!

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Old 04-04-2012, 06:37 PM   #48
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by DoctaMario View Post
Lot of good info in this thread and it's inspired me to get my DJ set together (which is going pretty well so far!)

But I have one question: I come from a musician background and so i've felt like when I'm DJing, I'd want to be playing SOMETHING live at least part of the time. But I've also heard that some guys just plug in the computer/iPod/whatever and just play the set from there and dance around and act like they're doing something. So I guess my question is, what do you guys DO while onstage? Sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question.

When at a club or serious performance, I'm usually spending most of my time mixing, beatmatching, adding effects, looping, using samples, etc...

At house parties, its a little different. I still mix live but not to the same complexity level that I do at a professional gig, just so I can spend more time enjoying the party myself, dancing, and pumping up the crowd.

I'd like to know if you've made any progress or figured out anything since you posted this??
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Old 14-04-2012, 10:18 PM   #49
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by DoctaMario
Lot of good info in this thread and it's inspired me to get my DJ set together (which is going pretty well so far!)

But I have one question: I come from a musician background and so i've felt like when I'm DJing, I'd want to be playing SOMETHING live at least part of the time. But I've also heard that some guys just plug in the computer/iPod/whatever and just play the set from there and dance around and act like they're doing something. So I guess my question is, what do you guys DO while onstage? Sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question.
I think if you're still an amateuer and you don't have that stress like all the big stars having no sleep and playing all day,you should mix real ! I played in some clubs and learned about DJing more than one year...And what I think is that you first should handle all that stuff about DJin before you just act like doing it...Good example is David Guetta,no I'm not that kind of person who is always hating him,but there's one point : He is almost never mixing real,the equipment is turned off mostly...but sometimes he's forced to mix real and thats when you see all the fail videos of him on youtube...I listen to a lot of famous DJ's who play all day and they're still mixing real...if you do it all day,it's getting more easy and you have more possibilities !
However,on homeparties and so on I only mix if they give me nice equipment lol
Everybody has to know it for himself,but I personally like it more to learn it by doing ...and i love this freedom of creativity
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Old 17-04-2012, 10:23 PM   #50
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by atrophIA View Post
When at a club or serious performance, I'm usually spending most of my time mixing, beatmatching, adding effects, looping, using samples, etc...

At house parties, its a little different. I still mix live but not to the same complexity level that I do at a professional gig, just so I can spend more time enjoying the party myself, dancing, and pumping up the crowd.

I'd like to know if you've made any progress or figured out anything since you posted this??
Indeed. Thanks for the answers, all you guys.

Actually, creating a set has been a good way to learn more about Ableton because instead of being sidetracked (so to speak anyway) with the musical and compositional aspects of making a tune, I'm just getting in and messing around with stuff. It's been a lot of fun actually! I've got a good mix of tunes thus far. Got some Burial and Joy Orbison to start with, then gonna put in some Justice and one or two of my own tunes in to take it up a bit energy wise, then at the apex, I have some deadmau5, Scissor Sisters, and I wanted to put in this one Bowie tune as well.

One thing I DID learn though, is that when you pull samples into the DAW, if you have them on an external HD, then you unplug the external and take the computer somewhere else, you lose the samples until you plug it back in. I was in Key West for two weeks playing with my country band and was intending on working on the set only to find that because I didn't have the samples locally everything was gone. So needless to say, I made a little folder and put all the samples in it under the project file.

But I have one more question. So far I'm just getting the tunes together and making the transitions, though initially anyway, I haven't really done anything to any of the songs, just kind of edited them and let them play. I started chopping up the deadmau5 and Scissor Sisters tunes and messed with them a bit, but do you guys ever just let something play straight through or no? Is that cheating? Lol, I feel like such a n00b right now, it's hilarious! Thanks for bearing with me!
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Old 18-04-2012, 09:35 AM   #51
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

You are on right track dear , i think you have to use the various software in music making only the software which you can easily use , this will be a nice idea for you.
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Old 18-04-2012, 08:04 PM   #52
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Originally Posted by DoctaMario View Post
I haven't really done anything to any of the songs, just kind of edited them and let them play. I started chopping up the deadmau5 and Scissor Sisters tunes and messed with them a bit, but do you guys ever just let something play straight through or no? Is that cheating? Lol, I feel like such a n00b right now, it's hilarious! Thanks for bearing with me!
There is no cheating when it comes to DJing, only varying levels of laziness (well, actually, depends how you are promoting yourself).

An example is a fairly well know producer who was 'caught' playing a mix CD rather than DJing live (he forgot to turn the second deck on), his excuses, when confronted, were varied but a couple of points stuck out:

  • He had a live set sorted but the equipment wouldn't link with the sound system.
  • He is a producer, not a DJ.
  • He panicked and had to stick the CD on or let everyone down.
  • Who cares whether it was live or not as long as the crowd had a good time.


Now there are good counters to each of these points but the main one was that he was advertised as doing a Live set, which he didn't.


I've seen guys doing laptop sets in clubs and its often nearly impossible to tell whether they are actually doing stuff or just pretending to, from what I can tell it makes little difference to the vibe of the night, but doing things live rather than having a preplanned set can leave you with a lot more flexibility. So if you found that your audience is a lot more open minded than you initially thought you can adapt your set, which wouldn't really be possible if you're playing a pre-rendered set.

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Old 22-04-2012, 11:00 PM   #53
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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There is no cheating when it comes to DJing, only varying levels of laziness (well, actually, depends how you are promoting yourself).

An example is a fairly well know producer who was 'caught' playing a mix CD rather than DJing live (he forgot to turn the second deck on), his excuses, when confronted, were varied but a couple of points stuck out:

  • He had a live set sorted but the equipment wouldn't link with the sound system.
  • He is a producer, not a DJ.
  • He panicked and had to stick the CD on or let everyone down.
  • Who cares whether it was live or not as long as the crowd had a good time.


Now there are good counters to each of these points but the main one was that he was advertised as doing a Live set, which he didn't.


I've seen guys doing laptop sets in clubs and its often nearly impossible to tell whether they are actually doing stuff or just pretending to, from what I can tell it makes little difference to the vibe of the night, but doing things live rather than having a preplanned set can leave you with a lot more flexibility. So if you found that your audience is a lot more open minded than you initially thought you can adapt your set, which wouldn't really be possible if you're playing a pre-rendered set.

Very good points. I guess the beauty of Ableton is that you can change stuff up on the fly pretty easily should you get a request or if the crowd is a bit more hip than you thought they'd be.

Do you play pretty well known stuff, more obscure stuff, mix it up? I'm sure this is all dependent on the gig, but what's the ratio of well known vs. not so well known or original stuff that you normally play?

Though I gotta say, I'm curious as to who this "fairly well known producer" is. I can see how the two things aren't quite mutually exclusive. They're two pretty different talents.
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Old 26-04-2012, 06:03 AM   #54
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

Yeah it is really at very big level , but i like the idea generated from your mind , you are from programming background that good , but for live music performance you need a group that full fills all the requirements of a live performance, so whats your next plans for this ?
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Old 06-05-2012, 06:37 PM   #55
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

I'm not from a programming background really. I'm fairly comfortable with the studio, but I'd want to make my performances a little more than just me standing by a laptop, at least eventually.
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Old 07-05-2012, 10:19 PM   #56
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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I'm not from a programming background really. I'm fairly comfortable with the studio, but I'd want to make my performances a little more than just me standing by a laptop, at least eventually.
How about a keytar? Or some other midi instrument? That can be pretty cool. Also, if you play guitar you might be able to work that into your sets somehow.
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Old 07-05-2012, 11:04 PM   #57
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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How about a keytar? Or some other midi instrument? That can be pretty cool. Also, if you play guitar you might be able to work that into your sets somehow.
I have a MIDI controller, and I thought about leaving a track open so I could noodle or even just play the bassline live if I felt like it. Or I could even loop a section and solo over it or something. Just SOMETHING to make it more of a performance. But I'm still working on the set and trying to get more comfortable with Ableton.

I REALLY want to get into the MIDI guitar thing. I think, if anything, it would make my own tracks sound a bit different because it'd be a different instrument controlling the sounds AND I could play it live. But I'm not quite there yet. I need to research it a bit more.
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Old 07-05-2012, 11:13 PM   #58
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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I have a MIDI controller, and I thought about leaving a track open so I could noodle or even just play the bassline live if I felt like it. Or I could even loop a section and solo over it or something. Just SOMETHING to make it more of a performance. But I'm still working on the set and trying to get more comfortable with Ableton.

I REALLY want to get into the MIDI guitar thing. I think, if anything, it would make my own tracks sound a bit different because it'd be a different instrument controlling the sounds AND I could play it live. But I'm not quite there yet. I need to research it a bit more.
The other issue is the price tag on these toys a lot of them are in the thousands. Once you get over that hurdle, it shouldn't be too hard. I mean, only play the easy parts.. if there are no easy parts, trigger the samples? Modulate the LFO on that bass? Things like that.. you can do other things besides play the notes. So long as the effect isn't too subtle, the audience will (probably) like.
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Old 08-05-2012, 01:43 AM   #59
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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The other issue is the price tag on these toys a lot of them are in the thousands. Once you get over that hurdle, it shouldn't be too hard. I mean, only play the easy parts.. if there are no easy parts, trigger the samples? Modulate the LFO on that bass? Things like that.. you can do other things besides play the notes. So long as the effect isn't too subtle, the audience will (probably) like.
Yeah price is DEFINITELY a consideration. That and for a guitar, I'd have to have the pickup integrated into it. You can buy Midi ready Strats which is always an option I guess. Still, a keytar would be fucking COOL!!
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Old 08-05-2012, 01:49 AM   #60
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Re: How to get involved with playing live

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Yeah price is DEFINITELY a consideration. That and for a guitar, I'd have to have the pickup integrated into it. You can buy Midi ready Strats which is always an option I guess. Still, a keytar would be fucking COOL!!
I just thought of the craziest idea........ what if there was a way to use a Guitar Hero/Rock Band guitar as a midi controller!!! :O then if your bass melody or whatever uses five or less notes, you could play it with that! Wouldn't that be awesome?

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