House or Hip-Hop as a majority?
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  1. #1
    Tech Wizard DJ Altercation's Avatar
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    Default House or Hip-Hop as a majority?

    My first real gig is going to be at a local Bar on a busy Main strip in a college town here, blocks away from a state university. I frequently go out here, I know the crowds; I know the music. I know that the music choice is the bars discretion, and that's totally fine. Here's my question;

    From your experience from the DJs here that have performed these types of gigs; should I focus primarily on popular, well known songs or dive into music I know to perform. I primarily play house, club and even my hip-hop songs are club mixes. I still have a plethra of popular hip hop songs and every so often I go into the billboard top club songs, but mostly everything I have is underground stuff. I just don't know what to expect. I have to present the general manager with a CD of a mix I think the crowd will respond to. I KNOW I have the stuff to make the college crowd dance and get crazy, but I want to try to balance this with the approval of the manager.

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    I have/held resident spots at college bars. You gotta be able to play basically anything at almost a moments notice, and make it sound good. Nothing too hard either. The crowd usually will only respond to music they know (and be very gentle w/ any remixes). They love old school Hip-hop. If you play underground House or whatever, you'll get maybe a dozen frat guys going crazy, but you'll drive most of the crowd out the door. You can almost get away w/ anything if it's done at the right moment and in very small portions, but your bread and butter is playing songs that people know and are great to dance to

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    Quote Originally Posted by manchild View Post
    I have/held resident spots at college bars. You gotta be able to play basically anything at almost a moments notice, and make it sound good. Nothing too hard either. The crowd usually will only respond to music they know (and be very gentle w/ any remixes). They love old school Hip-hop. If you play underground House or whatever, you'll get maybe a dozen frat guys going crazy, but you'll drive most of the crowd out the door. You can almost get away w/ anything if it's done at the right moment and in very small portions, but your bread and butter is playing songs that people know and are great to dance to
    For the mix i'm giving to the general manager, i'm filling with alot of recent stuff just remixed with a house kick to it. I am going to throw in some overplayed stuff (in my opinion anyway) that I hear alot in those kinds of places. I want to do something different and really get the place going, but I also feel like I have to stick to a certain set of guidelines if I want to be invited back.

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    Tech Guru SirReal's Avatar
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    So wait, have you been offered a gig or are you hoping to get a gig with your submitted mix?
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    Tech Wizard DJ Altercation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SirReal View Post
    So wait, have you been offered a gig or are you hoping to get a gig with your submitted mix?
    I talked to the general manager and he asked me to come in and submit to him a mix and sit down for an interview about setting me up with a gig there.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Altercation View Post
    For the mix i'm giving to the general manager, i'm filling with alot of recent stuff just remixed with a house kick to it. I am going to throw in some overplayed stuff (in my opinion anyway) that I hear alot in those kinds of places. I want to do something different and really get the place going, but I also feel like I have to stick to a certain set of guidelines if I want to be invited back.
    Yea that could work depending on how "mainstream" and "relatable" your remixes are if that makes any sense. FYI typically these guys know what kinda music works in their bar, and thats what they are looking for, and they see a lot of new guys that try to mix 128 all night and bomb cause it just doesnt work (I've seen my fair share as well). I'm only going off of my experience, which is fairly extensive at places like this, but obviously it doesnt mean it's rule of thumb, and maybe this place is a lot different then I think. Good luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by manchild View Post
    Yea that could work depending on how "mainstream" and "relatable" your remixes are if that makes any sense. FYI typically these guys know what kinda music works in their bar, and thats what they are looking for, and they see a lot of new guys that try to mix 128 all night and bomb cause it just doesnt work (I've seen my fair share as well). I'm only going off of my experience, which is fairly extensive at places like this, but obviously it doesnt mean it's rule of thumb, and maybe this place is a lot different then I think. Good luck
    No you pretty much hit the nail on the head. I hear most of the DJs here mix in some heavy house stuff, but most of it commercial (Titanium type stuff as of recent) with some hip hop thrown in too. I have a great idea of what is going to be expected of me, just going to be hard to do both on and off.

  8. #8

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    If you have to choose, go with something well known, and popular...Unless otherwise stated.

    The general public is of the lowest common denominator. That's why "popular music" is called "popular music" because everyone listens to it.

    You pluck 10 random people off the streets from virtually any city worldwide, and you ask them if they know who Madonna is, I can almost guarantee that they will all say yes. But if you ask them if they know your favourite EDM producer, and all you'll get is blank stares.

    One of the weddings I DJ'd at this summer, I dropped "Martin Solveig - Night out" and the bride said "Can you stick to top 40's? And I said ok, but in my head I was thinking *This song is in the top 30 countdown* rolleyes.

    Case in point, the general public is stupid, don't assume they're gonna get down to your underground bangers because it's more than likely that they won't.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tokenasianguy View Post
    If you have to choose, go with something well known, and popular...Unless otherwise stated.

    The general public is of the lowest common denominator. That's why "popular music" is called "popular music" because everyone listens to it.

    You pluck 10 random people off the streets from virtually any city worldwide, and you ask them if they know who Madonna is, I can almost guarantee that they will all say yes. But if you ask them if they know your favourite EDM producer, and all you'll get is blank stares.

    One of the weddings I DJ'd at this summer, I dropped "Martin Solveig - Night out" and the bride said "Can you stick to top 40's? And I said ok, but in my head I was thinking *This song is in the top 30 countdown* rolleyes.

    Case in point, the general public is stupid, don't assume they're gonna get down to your underground bangers because it's more than likely that they won't.
    Exactly. The thing is though, this town is filled with 20 something kids who think they know house and electro and in all reality they don't. My brother goes to school here, I lived up there for a year. It's the kids who think Deadmau5 and 'Levels' is the most innovative thing to ever happen in the history of house. When they hear this kind of stuff, they get amped up and when they hear Alesso and things of the sort, they act like they know it. I think the safest bet is to stick with what they know, and a little of what they pretend to know. It should be smoothe sailing from there.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Altercation View Post
    Exactly. The thing is though, this town is filled with 20 something kids who think they know house and electro and in all reality they don't. My brother goes to school here, I lived up there for a year. It's the kids who think Deadmau5 and 'Levels' is the most innovative thing to ever happen in the history of house. When they hear this kind of stuff, they get amped up and when they hear Alesso and things of the sort, they act like they know it. I think the safest bet is to stick with what they know, and a little of what they pretend to know. It should be smoothe sailing from there.
    But Deadmau5, and Avicii both get a lot of radio play. I think if you stick to songs on the radio, you're golden.

    Have you ever heard the new Will I Am track "This is love"? Probably one of the bigger tracks right now, and yet, when I drop that at weddings everyone stops in their tracks.

    So sometimes even commercial, isn't commercial enough.

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