My first cue juggling performance
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  1. #1
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    Default My first cue juggling performance

    Last Friday, I was DJing at my regular spot, and things were starting to warm up on the dance floor. I recently bought a LPD8 (My first MIDI controller!) so I plugged that in and mapped it really quick for the cue points in Serato. Between tracks I set cue points and basically turned SSL into a drum machine. (Set one cue at a bass, hat, snare, etc.) It all sounded really sick in my headphones, so the next transition I went live with it, banging out what I thought was a hella tight beat. Now, my head was down this entire time, and I glanced up after about 10-15 seconds and the room had FROZEN and was staring at me like "dude, wtf?!!?" I panicked, hit the cue for the beginning of the song, and ducked behind the booth in anticipation of a beer cup flying my way. I tried it again a little later, but it was a lot more subtle, the outgoing track was still playing, and the instrument tracks were similar enough so it just sounded like a blend. The other DJ there thought it was great and told me people were feeling it, but I think HE thought it was great and was just trying to make me feel better...
    So my question: Did I punk out? Should I have kept playing to see if they would dance to the new sound or get the pitchforks? This is probably the first time any of them have experienced/seen a DJ do this, the talent pool around here is terrible. Have any of you broken out something shockingly unexpected on your home crowd? Can it ever go right? Should I try this again?

    I did have a guy come up to me at the end of the night wanting to play on the pads, I let him. I think people are intrigued, they can see exactly what I'm doing, but what I don't know is if the like it and are willing to dance to my live remixes...

  2. #2
    Banhammerized theory28's Avatar
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    oh jeez thats kinda funny in a bad way.
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  3. #3
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    I've never had that strong of a reaction when I did something, except when the amp cut out on me one time (music... music...silence!), but this was different. People were staring at me, not moving, and not talking... Freaked me out.

    Where's Ean? I want to hear what happened the first time he played his first cue-juggling set. Or the first time he showed up with just two midi fighters and a laptop... (You're the DJ? Where's your stuff?)

  4. #4
    Tech Guru Flash101uk's Avatar
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    Cue juggling is a very difficult art form to get right without the use of traktors sync. Even a slight little bit off time and its pretty noticeable, and if your running that on a live deck as the main track, I can understand why people stopped and stared.

    Personally I feel that cue juggling is more suited to vocal samples timed properly over a song to add to the performance.

    Another thing to consider; is the LPD8 suitable for live cue juggling? I have one and used it for cue juggling. The latency isnt massive, but its enough to balls up cue juggling royally imo. Try it next to a midifighter, now thats sharp. Like, instant sharp. I could not live without the midifighter for cue juggling now.
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  5. #5
    DJTT Infectious Moderator photojojo's Avatar
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    Just practice more and get a better idea for what works with the way your LPD 8 acts versus a midi fighter.
    Chris Jennings FHP

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  6. #6
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    I would try it again dude...maybe its something that people just need to get used to. I guess one thing to think about is the phrasing (i.e. just juggling for 4, 8, or 16 bars depending...although 16 bars can get quite difficult) in order for it to work in the context of the two songs. I also use it a lot to mix hip hop when im tired of doing snare mixes. Ill set the kick as a cue and work little bits in gradually, especially on really tough transitions that make a snare mix impossible. But remember that you're the DJ and part of your job is to introduce unsuspecting patrons to new and exciting things. Don't write it off yet!

  7. #7
    Tech Guru sarasin's Avatar
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    yeah....definitely test shit out at home before doing it live...unless you pretty experienced.

    Record what you play and listen to it afterward. This WILL help you a great deal.

    Subtlety is key also. Don't just BANG it in...if the crowd is not used to such things.

    Once you have them frothing....that's when you play the mad note!

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  8. #8
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    Default I don't even have a midifighter

    Quote Originally Posted by photojojo View Post
    Just practice more and get a better idea for what works with the way your LPD 8 acts versus a midi fighter.
    I don't have a midifighter dude... Don't plan to get one unless they stick a scratch crossfader, 4 endless rotaries, and 2 upfaders on it.

    Maybe I just need better schooling in cue juggling. Is there a tutorial buried somewhere? I'll watch all the midifighter contest entries later, steal those ideas...
    Could someone describe how to do a smooth sounding cue juggle? I mix hip hop, so it'll probably be a little different to do than electro. Also, how do you mix a fast song into a slow one using a cue juggle? Seems like you can't because... How do I explain this...
    Kick.........Snare <-Slow song
    Kick.......Snare <-Fast song
    So that leaves me doing something like:
    Kick.Kick...Snare so the beats line up, however that makes the incoming song sound faster and more energetic. Anybody use the crossfader to cut the cues after the first little bit? I don't know if I have that kind of skill...

  9. #9
    Tech Mentor Redlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Nada View Post
    Could someone describe how to do a smooth sounding cue juggle?
    Yes, its simple all you have to do is .......practice. After that, do more practice. Then follow it up with a rigorous bout of......., you guessed it, practice. Good luck.

    oh yeah and try a metronome.
    Last edited by Redlight; 08-19-2010 at 06:49 PM.
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  10. #10
    DJTT Infectious Moderator photojojo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Nada View Post
    I don't have a midifighter dude... Don't plan to get one unless they stick a scratch crossfader, 4 endless rotaries, and 2 upfaders on it.
    I don't have one either. What I was trying to say is that the responsiveness of the LPD 8 versus the midi fighter is going to be different so what you might see someone do with a midi fighter might take a little more work on an LPD8.
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