Being a DJ is awesome, but boy can it change you! You suddenly find yourself behaving in certain ways, almost involuntarily, and doing things that many “normal” people think are crazy. I’m not talking about going deaf, developing a drug habit and hanging out with people half your age (these are all things you can definitely control, if you want/need to), but more about the subtle behavioral changes that kind of sneak up on you, until they’re totally ingrained in who you are! Like…
- You can never go to a nightclub and have fun – Oh, no. Even if you can get over the secret jealousy of wanting to be DJing, you’re hyper-critical of everything, from the DJs to the sound system to the way the door is being run… the lot. The more you DJ out, the more this one creeps up on you, until going out simply becomes research/checking out the competition. You, in short, become a not very fun person to go out with
- You spot instantly when a CD loops in a bar, café etc… You feel you are generally the only person who notices background music anyway, and so naturally, you’re the only one who gets upset when you hear a CD play on loop. It’s especially annoying in nice restaurants, where you can’t help yourself thinking: “Why did they pay so much attention to everything apart from the music?” Saying this out loud, though, usually gets you a kick under the table from your other half for being so miserable
- You can spot instantly when a speaker is distorting, even at 50 yards! – Picture this: You’re on a lovely beach with friends or partner, sun shining, cold drink, and in the distance, a little beach shack plays top 40 radio… through a distorted old speaker. Can you relax? No chance. That little plastic speaker becomes the bane of your life until you are finally out of earshot. Even the crap they’re playing becomes secondary to the quality!
- You can no longer count past four – Crazy but true, you find yourself counting any rhythm anywhere or just an imaginary rhythm in your head, and naturally, you go “one, two, three, four” round and round. (At least you’re not a microphone roadie with a rock band, they get stuck at “one-two! one – TWO!”)
- You can’t hear a song that you know played in full, without hearing “your” transitions – “Why isn’t song X coming in?” you think, until you remember that this isn’t actually your mix but just one of “your” songs being played somewhere else. Related: Not liking the speed a song is being played at, because you play it at a different speed…
- You hear mistakes when everyone else thinks the DJ is awesome – Smart DJs learn not to point out train wrecks and other DJing errors to their friends, who – we learn – are not afflicted like us and generally happy to dance through even appalling errors. Related: Spotting mixes that aren’t in key
- You get annoyed when TV commercials brutally edit songs – …and what really annoys you is that they are not respecting the underlying song structure (see point 4 – see, you can’t help it! You’re subconsciously counting those beats and bars in fours…)
- When someone asks you “what’s your favorite music?” you reply “for what purpose?” – Being unable to separate what you like from what you think any given dance floor might like is bad, but it’s hard to stop this developing from the necessary skill of simply separating the two things in your head
- Instantly spotting when your windscreen wipers, indicator lights or even a loud clock are in time with the music you’re playing – This one really does feel close to madness sometimes (for me anyway), spotting a beat match between car hardware and car stereo… Related: Beat matching your strides to the songs on your headphones when our running
- You can’t help yourself frantically trying to remember snippets of song lyrics in order to Google them later – …normally when Shazam fails to recognize a new song you know you’ve got to have…
- You are utterly unable to keep yourself away from DJ booths – Mainly this is to see the equipment the DJ is using, hopefully it isn’t to make requests, although I am personally fond of just shaking the DJ’s hand on the way out if I’ve enjoyed his or her music… after all, we all know how much that means, don’t we?
- Having the sudden urge to go and adjust the sound when another DJ is playing – Right, I’ve actually done this (in fact, it was the pitch). Some dude was playing 80s mega-mixes at +8 and he slipped off to the toilet, so I marched up and set it all to the right speed… only to slink away like a coward when I saw him returning! True story 🙂
- You turn anything with a volume fader into DJ equipment – …and so get irrationally annoyed at any kind of audio gear that has electronic up/down volume controls instead of a knob you can use to cut the music in and out quickly with!
- You are the only person who spots the odd song from the 90s at a “so-called” 80s night – I mean, we can all hopefully understand why no normal, sane person would care about this… but it’s wrong, isn’t it?
Seriously, I do hope you can still go out and have fun at least sometimes, and that you can see how us DJs maybe can be just a little annoying to everyone else, at least every now and then! I wanted to end with a true story from our friends over at Tuff Covers. One of that gang went to a pre-natal appointment and when the nurse scanned their tiny unborn baby, and its little heartbeat echoed through the examination room… I quote: “I knew the BPM of the baby’s heartbeat before the machine even worked it out”!
There really is no hope for some people… 🙂
This article originally appeared on Sonicbids
With album sales nowhere near what they used to be (unless your name is Taylor Swift, who probably doesn’t frequent indie artist advice columns), and streaming not yet a truly viable source of income for musicians, a lot of artists are looking for new ways to distribute their work that will both reach their fans and result in some remuneration.
Three such methods that are gaining in popularity are the new fan-funding site Patreon, the concept of artist-run subscriptions, and going old school with special cassette releases. What all three of these methods of distribution have in common is that they give fans something exclusive, and they create a unique connection between the artist and the fan. Here’s what else you need to know about distro’s newest stars.
Do you use Kickstarter, Indiegogo, or PledgeMusic but hate having to constantly launch new campaigns, and re-ask all your fans for support? Patreon has found a way to streamline the process.
Patreon was created by Jack Conte, who is one half of the musical duo Pomplamoose, when he noticed his YouTube views weren’t doing as much for his bottom line as he’d hoped. Rather than a one-time campaign, Patreon is a platform where fans contribute a set amount per project. For example, a fan can decide to pledge $1 per song for an artist, and that artist will get $1 every time he or she creates a song.
According to Patreon’s Head of Marketing and Special Projects, Erica Costello, this cuts out quite a few, oftentimes unnecessary, people. “Literal middlemen have come between artists and their supporters for way too long,” she explains. “Artists and supporters belong together!”
A few big names have been using Patreon, including the queen of crowdfunding Amanda Palmer and Ryan Leslie. That said, Costello notes artists of that notoriety aren’t necessarily who Patreon is focused on. “We’re super stoked to host Amanda Palmer and Ryan [Leslie],” she says, “but we take pride in serving the creative middle class. Patreon is the primary source of income for so many singer-songwriters who were struggling to pay rent and eat food, even though millions of people watched and loved their creations on ad-based platforms like YouTube.”
Patreon, at its essence, is a modern day, more advanced version of a fan club. Pentatonix, the a cappella supergroup known for their tight relationship with their fans, uses the service, and according to the group’s Scott Hoying, “A fan club is a perfect title for it. There’s more of a sense of a community, though, because it’s all digital.”
Ari Herstand, who’s a musician but uses Patreon to support his music business blog, adds, “Fans crave a closer engagement and exclusive content from their favorite artists.” He notes Patreon “gives fans a [nearly] direct line to support their favorite independent artists more than just paying for a download, which has turned into a cold, detached, digital transaction, quite different from the feeling fans would get visiting a record store and buying their favorite artist’s record.”
With constant access to your fans’ bank accounts, however, how does an artist make sure that their relationship with their fans stays a happy one? According to Hoying, “Putting out good content and staying interactive with the patrons will keep all parties happy.” Herstand seconds this, saying, “If the artist continues to show their fans that they actually care about them, and continues to be authentic and honest, the fans will stay loyal.”
2. Artist-run subscriptions
Magazines have been published for hundreds of years, and for hundreds of years people have subscribed to the magazines which featured topics in which they were interested. Some indie musicians are looking to use that ideology as a way to sell their music.
Coole High, a hip-hop and smooth jazz artist, remembers first hearing about the artist subscription concept in 2009, when he met Tim Sweeney, who ran a music strategy conference in LA. “He had this brilliant idea of independent artists having their own subscription models to sell their music, merch, etc.” The comparison made at the time was Netflix versus Blockbuster.
In 2009, however, the tech wasn’t quite there yet to make it happen. Now it is, which is why Coole High recently launched a way for fans to subscribe to his work for $20 a year. That subscription includes his extensive back catalog, any new releases that come out in the next year, discounts on tickets and merch, and subscription exclusives in the form of videos and concert streams.
Dance pop artist HoneyChrome has also launched a subscription format, noting “it’s like the fan pays the artist to be an artist, not pay the record label to manufacture one release.”
They key to making this form of distribution work, according to Coole High, is in the connection an artist has with his or her fans. “It’s really about creating a new and more intimate but effective way to connect with the people who really appreciate what you do, who you are, and what you’re about.” He adds, “A lot of my fans can’t make it from France to see me do a gig in NYC, so now with the subscription they’d have access to live streaming of select concerts or performances from virtually any location I can access WiFi.”
Both Coole High and HoneyChrome also love the fact that this form of distribution discards the traditional way of how artists release albums. With a subscription format, much like how Beyonce and Drake have dropped albums out of the blue, artists can release music whenever they want to. “Typical album/EP/single release schedules are fading,” HoneyChrome explains. “Artists like myself are creating more and more music faster than ever, and we want it to be heard. This answers our call.”
3. Cassette tapes
Yes, you read that right. There are artists and labels going back in time and releasing albums via cassette tape. Some artists are doing cassette-only exclusives, while indie labels like Burger Records boast a giant catalog of cassette releases. (And when we say “giant,” we mean it. Their site features over 200 albums available on cassette.)
Most music fans aren’t about to add a tape deck to their lives, but many still have them in their cars and others have older boomboxes that have the ability to play tapes. You’re definitely targeting a very specific audience with a release on cassette, but when done correctly, it can reap some pretty impressive rewards.
For his most recent tour, Stones Throw Records artist Homeboy Sandman had a tour-exclusive cassette release, meaning the only way to get it was to buy it at one of his tour dates. “Everybody’s hyped over it,” he says of the cassette release, which he credits Stones Throw founder Peanut Butter Wolf for coming up with. “I sell it more than any other piece of merch. More than vinyl, hats, or CDs.”
Homeboy Sandman feels that the exclusive nature of the release, which makes the album a collectible, is partly what inspires so many people to purchase it. “Nobody’s like, ‘Oh, I’ll just get it online, so I don’t have to carry it home.’”
From an artist’s standpoint, he notes that the cassette tape is a format that is more challenging to rip and put online, so a cassette release will likely have to be bought if someone wants to hear it.
The positive reaction he’s received from his first cassette release has Homeboy Sandman thinking of future uses for the format. As he says, “If I had some of my actual albums available on cassette, it seems like they would sell, too.”
Which one of these burgeoning forms of distribution is right for you? We don’t know, but we can give you three words of advice regarding this: know your audience. If you have an older crowd that grew up in the ’80s and ’90s and is prone to long car trips, a cassette release may be right up their alley. If your fans have fervently supported every one of your releases, perhaps you may want to try one of the subscription ideas.
There are a lot of ways to get your music out there, and as HoneyChrome notes, they all have the same ultimate goal. “I think we are just trying to get back to making everyone happy, fans and artists.”
Adam Bernard is a music industry veteran who has been working in media since 2000. If you live in the NYC area, you’ve probably seen him at a show. He prefers his venues intimate, his whiskey on the rocks, and his baseball played without the DH. Follow him at @adamsworldblog.
It is with great pleasure we announce that David Gilmour’s 2015 European tour dates have been officially announced!
The new David Gilmour solo album 2015 will also be released in September, so plenty to look forward to. It is yet untitled.
Although we have to wait all the way until September 2015, he will be performing at 6 venues across Croatia, Italy, France, Germany and the UK.
It is not known at this stage whether or not there will be any further dates announced – it says on David Gilmour’s blog that there are no other planned concerts, the site is currently down though.
Tickets go on sale at 10am on 6th March 2015 – David Gilmour’s birthday of course! See more about ordering tickets below and look at UK tickets here.
David Gilmour Album 2015!
David Gilmour’s yet untitled 2015 album will be released in September 2015 to coincide with his tour which will be much to the pleasure of fans the world over. Don’t miss out on news regarding David Gilmour’s new album 2015 and tour in 2015. Make sure you get our free email newsletter, or follow us on Social Media via Facebook or Twitter.
You can order tickets from David Gilmour’s tour page for links and details and get UK tickets from Ticketmaster.
David Gilmour has said in interviews that he does not want the inconvenience of a massive stadium tour and the thought of anything on the scale of the old Pink Floyd sends him in to a cold shiver. It sure must be stressful putting on such huge concerts and could potentially take some of the enjoyment away – tell that to Roger Waters though with his massive Wall tour!
David will be playing at 6 separate venues across Europe – for the dates announced so far on the European Leg – and are all smaller intimate venues compared to some of the massive places out there. The venues for the David Gilmour 2015 tour are absolutely beautiful except for two! This makes for a much more intimate concert and can greatly increase the pleasure of the audience because you are not sat half a mile away up in the top of the stands! Saying that, there will be a lot of demand for tickets so get in there quick on March 6th which is, of course, David Gilmour’s birthday!
Concert Database Exploration…
Here are the links to the concerts, click on them to explore where else he has played in those cities/countries and whether he has played that venue before. For example, David Gilmour has only ever played concert dates at the Royal Albert Hall (three times in May 2006 on his On An Island Tour) and has never played at any of the other venues announced so far!
2015-09-12 – David Gilmour – Arena Pula – Pula – Croatia (Tickets)
2015-09-14 – David Gilmour – Verona Arena – Verona – Italy (Tickets)
2015-09-15 – David Gilmour – TEATRO LE MULINA – Florence – Italy (Tickets)
2015-09-17 – David Gilmour – Theatre Antique – Orange – France (Tickets)
2015-09-19 – David Gilmour – Konig Pilsner Arena – Oberhausen – Germany (Tickets)
2015-09-23 – David Gilmour – Royal Albert Hall – London – England (Tickets)
2015-09-24 – David Gilmour – Royal Albert Hall – London – England (Tickets)
2015-09-25 – David Gilmour – Royal Albert Hall – London – England (Tickets)
2015-10-02 – David Gilmour – Royal Albert Hall – London – England (Tickets)
2015-10-03 – David Gilmour – Royal Albert Hall – London – England (Tickets)
Are you ready for your special event ? The music is undoubtedly the most important part of the evening. It’s what drives you and your guests to get up off the chair and onto the dance floor !!