27
Mar 04

A few songs into my shift

FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 361 views

A few songs into my shift at the Birkbeck end-of-term party a guy came up to the decks. “Do you have a card?” “What?” “I’m getting married this year, I wondered if you had a card, you know, with your mobile on it.” I was flabbergasted! I reckon this is one of the most flattering things that can happen to a pop DJ: asking your mates to DJ your wedding is one thing but a complete stranger – !

Of course a lot of people do just that: the wedding DJ sector seems fairly immune to the music industry’s current travails, and has laughed off the ‘death of dance music’ – as long as human beings have legs they will want to dance to the “Grease Megamix”. I had been thinking earlier in the evening of how one becomes a wedding DJ – it’s something that genuinely appeals to me. It’s a high-responsibility thing to do, keeping a hugely diverse crowd happy and dancing – “diverse” not just in age but in attitude; for some attendees the wedding is one of the most important days of their lives, for others it’s just a booze-up or a bit of a chore. How do you juggle people’s tastes and expectations?

Of course you could just trot out the absolute standards but the difference between an OK pop night and a great pop night is the DJ playing the tunes that you had no idea you wanted to hear but that make you scream with pleasure when they do drop. That’s where the fun is. For the last 45 minutes at Birkbeck we DJed as a team, me on the decks with Steve, Tim, Steve’s Pete and Alix conferring to find the absolute hugest tunes. I also demonstrated the harshest skill in the rent-a-DJ’s armoury – the willingness to play absolute shite because you know it will get a crowd going (“There She Goes” by The La’s – the price of my soul in this case being one pint of session lager).

It was a very good night, all in all – but then any night which starts off with “I Love Horses” and ends up with “Tickle Tune” can be bad.

Add your comment

(Register to guarantee your comments don't get marked as spam.)


Required

Required (Your email address will not be published)

Top of page