I don't care what anyone says, mobile DJ'ing is MUCH harder than any Club/Bar DJ'ing!
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  1. #1

    Default I don't care what anyone says, mobile DJ'ing is MUCH harder than any Club/Bar DJ'ing!

    Mobile DJ's unite!

    After DJ'ing in an after hours house club for my first 7 years, and doing the mobile DJ'ing for another 7 years now, I can honestly and unequivocally say that mobile DJ'ing is harder than anything in the club/bar scene.

    Back in the club scene, it was like shooting fish in a barrel. It was a house club, and I was a house DJ. If that wasn't easy enough, people were there for one reason, to party. Some did drugs, some drank, some did both...But pretty much everyone was completely destroyed. In terms of the music, nobody really seemed to care whether it was popular, underground, old, new etc. as long as it had a 4/4 time signature. People only went to hear some variation of house music, and as long as you played it, you were good. To me, this aspect made track selection almost a no-brainer. It's not like anyone would go to a house club and complain that there was too much house.

    Now for mobile DJ'ing...You have to bring your own system which is already a pain in the ass. Sometimes you end up at a venue that's 100 years old (like an old mill) where there's no elevator, multiple levels, stairs, etc. Then you get into a room where it's the most ridiculous layout you've ever seen, and you have to figure out where the speakers go, tape down the cables, etc...So you've already sweat your ass off and burned away 90 minutes and you haven't even started playing yet.

    Once you start playing, you get all kinds of requests. Everyone thinks they have the best taste in music, and in order to properly showcase any skills you have to find a way to put it all together and make it sound good. Sometimes you get someone who wants to hear quick mixes and cuts from song to song, meanwhile other people will complain that they want to hear the whole thing. I could write a whole book on ridiculous things people have said. On a whole, people bark at you all night, "turn it down, turn it up, I hate this song, blah blah blah" and you have to do what you can to appease them or risk being called a crappy DJ'ing and not getting any referrals....Everyone has their own opinion, and they're all different, and in my honest opinion, they all stink.

    Then you get to pack it all up and drive home...

  2. #2
    Tech Convert
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    LOL - story of my life!!

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by rotoitiman View Post
    LOL - story of my life!!
    Do you do it full time?

  4. #4
    Tech Guru squidot's Avatar
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    bringing and setting up heavy gear (especially upstairs) is the worst to me. i used to do that at house/hotel parties all the time, but the crowd at those parties almost never asked about any requests and were never a pain in the ass for some reason. in my limited gigs at bars and such people always do what you described and i was constantly being bothered for requests that didn't make any sense. so i guess that second part can happen to you anywhere unless the booth is concealed or it's a specific styled venue playing only one genre like house (but even then people could want their house music tastes fulfilled to the max).

    i'd much rather take the not lugging around too much equipment route. if i can fit it in my mono bag, i'm good to go.
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  5. #5
    Tech Convert
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    No - but booked solid during Summer and every second weekend during the year. It feels like its full time sometimes.

  6. #6
    Tech Convert
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    I have expanded out to other cities so I am playing lots of new venues. Some are fantastic and others are not. Regardless setting up can be difficult sometimes.

  7. #7
    Tech Mentor
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    Hey... That's why us mobile DJ's, in most cases, make way more than the club guys do

    Best compromise? Own a venue with a pre-installed sound and lighting system. That way, you just show up, do the gig, and leave.

  8. #8
    Tech Guru MWagner's Avatar
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    My experience in the Techno scene doesn't match up with yours. Sure, there were people on drugs who didn't care what you played, but there were also large numbers of people with encyclopedic knowledge of techno music who will be able to point out mistakes you didn't even know you made. When you play techno in Detroit you better be on point because people have a kind of reverence for the music.
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by squidot View Post
    bringing and setting up heavy gear (especially upstairs) is the worst to me. i used to do that at house/hotel parties all the time, but the crowd at those parties almost never asked about any requests and were never a pain in the ass for some reason. in my limited gigs at bars and such people always do what you described and i was constantly being bothered for requests that didn't make any sense. so i guess that second part can happen to you anywhere unless the booth is concealed or it's a specific styled venue playing only one genre like house (but even then people could want their house music tastes fulfilled to the max).

    i'd much rather take the not lugging around too much equipment route. if i can fit it in my mono bag, i'm good to go.
    That's true, I guess bars can be the same. The club I DJ'd at did have an elevated booth, but it wasn't concealed. You would pass by the doorway on your way to the washroom. But nobody ever complained or asked for requests. All I remember were fists pumping, people dancing, and getting props all 'round.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by rotoitiman View Post
    No - but booked solid during Summer and every second weekend during the year. It feels like its full time sometimes.
    If that's no full time I don't know what is. This is my first attempt at doing it full time after deciding not to go back to office work and I'm only experiencing modest success (21 gigs) but it's increasing steadily

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