SOS: How To Do LIVE MIXING with 3 to 4 Tracks Together For COMPLEX HOUSE SETS
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  1. #1
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    Default SOS: How To Do LIVE MIXING with 3 to 4 Tracks Together For COMPLEX HOUSE SETS

    Hey guys,

    I would say I'm pretty new to DJing, I'm not very good. I can seamlessly mix 2 tracks together no problem but I've reached a super stagnant place in my growth as a DJ bcs now I am bored as FUCK only knowing how to just play with 2 tracks and that's it. I feel like my sets lack substance and it does make me lack the confidence to go out and get gigs/perform. I go out and see house djs playing on 4 channels (CDJ 2000s) and I've only got my two turntables. Which I love very much! But I wanted to learn how to play on CDJs as well.

    So right now, I've just ordered an SL3.. I have 2 Technic 1200 turntables, and I'm considering buying a CDJ 2000 to plug into the third channel I have. Then graduate to an SL4 once I'm comfortable mixing 3 tracks together.

    Thing is, is that I don't have any templates to help guide me until I can start making it my own. I keep searching the internet and all that's posted are links for fundamental mixing. "How to mix 2 tracks seamlessly", etc etc - I already know how to do that.

    So how do these house DJs make their live sets so full, complex and amazing? How do they keep their sounds from getting too "muddy" with all of those channels playing at once? Am I, for example, supposed to have two main tracks mixing into each other then have a sample on the third channel I can cut up and then for a fourth channel have some kind of melody looping?

    Asking for a friend. Thanks so much for reading.

  2. #2
    Tech Guru astromech's Avatar
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    There's three ways I make use of all four decks in Traktor. Bear in mind that I use sync...

    1) short loops from other tracks, that I've EQed to bring out elements I want heard. I use a Xone:62 or 92, so the 4-band EQ lets you sculpt sound a lot more.
    2) preparing incoming tracks while I'm mixing between two already playing. You end up hopping across three or four decks instead of just two.
    3) if I've got tracks that I can mash up. For example, I sometimes play a modern remix of a classic, but at points, bring in elements of the original (like the breakdown, for example). The key to this is to have your cue points set up, ready.

    EQing is the key to making your mixes sparkling rather than muddy. Don't be afraid to add EQ to an element instead of just taking away from tracks. Just like with production, you need to make sure all the elements can sit within the audio spectrum without too much overlap. That's the reason DJs take the bass away from tracks while blending.
    A&H Xone:96 | Xone:K1 | 2 x 1210s | Traktor Pro 3 | Apple Macbook Pro (2015) 13" | Sennheiser HD7 DJ | Maschine Mikro Mk3
    read: http://djworx.com/author/dan-morse
    talk: http://facebook.com/bleeptechno
    listen: http://mixcloud.com/bleephudds

  3. #3
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    If you have never played out before may I suggest learning to read the crowd, having a good flowing mistake free set and having fun at the club.

    Sure I love 3 and 4 deck mixing but it is very easy to get lost in your own world and forget what's going on, and before you know it you would of lost the crowd and there will be a 4 way train crash.

    The boredom your experiencing now will surely end when your in the booth and the crowds pumping.

  4. #4

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    I go out and see house djs playing on 4 channels (CDJ 2000s)
    I would say the majority of DJs who request 4 CDJs at the same time either do it for the show or for being able to cue up more than one song. e.g. while song a is playing they get song b ready and before they mix a to b they already start getting song c ready (beatmatched and cued up)
    The 'real' 3-4 deck djing happens on ableton, traktor, serato, etc. with sync. Those guys basically do 2 deck mixing and add interesting elements (drumloops, vocals) with decks 3 and 4. Playing 3 or more full blown house tracks at the same time will always sound shite.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru astromech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sheikyerbouti View Post
    I would say the majority of DJs who request 4 CDJs at the same time either do it for the show or for being able to cue up more than one song. e.g. while song a is playing they get song b ready and before they mix a to b they already start getting song c ready (beatmatched and cued up)
    The 'real' 3-4 deck djing happens on ableton, traktor, serato, etc. with sync. Those guys basically do 2 deck mixing and add interesting elements (drumloops, vocals) with decks 3 and 4. Playing 3 or more full blown house tracks at the same time will always sound shite.
    You can sync CDJs.
    A&H Xone:96 | Xone:K1 | 2 x 1210s | Traktor Pro 3 | Apple Macbook Pro (2015) 13" | Sennheiser HD7 DJ | Maschine Mikro Mk3
    read: http://djworx.com/author/dan-morse
    talk: http://facebook.com/bleeptechno
    listen: http://mixcloud.com/bleephudds

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by happydan View Post
    There's three ways I make use of all four decks in Traktor. Bear in mind that I use sync...

    1) short loops from other tracks, that I've EQed to bring out elements I want heard. I use a Xone:62 or 92, so the 4-band EQ lets you sculpt sound a lot more.
    2) preparing incoming tracks while I'm mixing between two already playing. You end up hopping across three or four decks instead of just two.
    3) if I've got tracks that I can mash up. For example, I sometimes play a modern remix of a classic, but at points, bring in elements of the original (like the breakdown, for example). The key to this is to have your cue points set up, ready.

    EQing is the key to making your mixes sparkling rather than muddy. Don't be afraid to add EQ to an element instead of just taking away from tracks. Just like with production, you need to make sure all the elements can sit within the audio spectrum without too much overlap. That's the reason DJs take the bass away from tracks while blending.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mrbigtoe View Post
    If you have never played out before may I suggest learning to read the crowd, having a good flowing mistake free set and having fun at the club.

    Sure I love 3 and 4 deck mixing but it is very easy to get lost in your own world and forget what's going on, and before you know it you would of lost the crowd and there will be a 4 way train crash.

    The boredom your experiencing now will surely end when your in the booth and the crowds pumping.
    Quote Originally Posted by sheikyerbouti View Post
    I would say the majority of DJs who request 4 CDJs at the same time either do it for the show or for being able to cue up more than one song. e.g. while song a is playing they get song b ready and before they mix a to b they already start getting song c ready (beatmatched and cued up)
    The 'real' 3-4 deck djing happens on ableton, traktor, serato, etc. with sync. Those guys basically do 2 deck mixing and add interesting elements (drumloops, vocals) with decks 3 and 4. Playing 3 or more full blown house tracks at the same time will always sound shite.

    Quote Originally Posted by happydan View Post
    There's three ways I make use of all four decks in Traktor. Bear in mind that I use sync...

    1) short loops from other tracks, that I've EQed to bring out elements I want heard. I use a Xone:62 or 92, so the 4-band EQ lets you sculpt sound a lot more.
    2) preparing incoming tracks while I'm mixing between two already playing. You end up hopping across three or four decks instead of just two.
    3) if I've got tracks that I can mash up. For example, I sometimes play a modern remix of a classic, but at points, bring in elements of the original (like the breakdown, for example). The key to this is to have your cue points set up, ready.

    EQing is the key to making your mixes sparkling rather than muddy. Don't be afraid to add EQ to an element instead of just taking away from tracks. Just like with production, you need to make sure all the elements can sit within the audio spectrum without too much overlap. That's the reason DJs take the bass away from tracks while blending.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mrbigtoe View Post
    If you have never played out before may I suggest learning to read the crowd, having a good flowing mistake free set and having fun at the club.

    Sure I love 3 and 4 deck mixing but it is very easy to get lost in your own world and forget what's going on, and before you know it you would of lost the crowd and there will be a 4 way train crash.

    The boredom your experiencing now will surely end when your in the booth and the crowds pumping.
    Quote Originally Posted by sheikyerbouti View Post
    I would say the majority of DJs who request 4 CDJs at the same time either do it for the show or for being able to cue up more than one song. e.g. while song a is playing they get song b ready and before they mix a to b they already start getting song c ready (beatmatched and cued up)
    The 'real' 3-4 deck djing happens on ableton, traktor, serato, etc. with sync. Those guys basically do 2 deck mixing and add interesting elements (drumloops, vocals) with decks 3 and 4. Playing 3 or more full blown house tracks at the same time will always sound shite.
    Sweet

    happydan/sheikyerbouti:

    Yes I'm playing on Serato DJ and want to move to 4 decks but it would be confusing having 4 full blown tracks playing, especially on the fly when my brain comprehension isn't trained and my ear isn't fully developed yet. Knowing which is where. However doing 2 full songs and using the other 2 decks to add looping and cool sounds/acapellas sounds like a good place to start when I open my third channel

    mrbigtoe:

    No I don't have much crowd experience. I played in a club once when I was 21 or 22 and was sweating/shaking my ass off; couldn't see the crowd I want to start playing out again, taking it seriously, so.. I'll need to make a few demos first

  7. #7
    Tech Guru astromech's Avatar
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    A&H Xone:96 | Xone:K1 | 2 x 1210s | Traktor Pro 3 | Apple Macbook Pro (2015) 13" | Sennheiser HD7 DJ | Maschine Mikro Mk3
    read: http://djworx.com/author/dan-morse
    talk: http://facebook.com/bleeptechno
    listen: http://mixcloud.com/bleephudds

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by happydan View Post
    this is fucking awesome!

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