Nobody could have predicted the unprecedented times that we are currently facing. If you’re in the events, music, or DJ industry, you’re probably feeling the brunt of it right now. With countries all over the world facing complete lockdowns and social distancing, and almost every event canceled or put on hold. Whether it’s the local club or bar, or the world’s biggest festivals such as Tomorrowland and Coachella; everything has been thrown out the door!
At the end of the day, it’s all in the name of flattening the curve of COVID-19, and in turn, saving lives. Although it’s definitely the right thing to do, many of us have found ourselves with an extended amount of downtime. Not to mention lingering anxiety as to when things will go back to normal, and whether the industry will bounce back once it does. This is especially concerning for those of us who rely on public events and DJ gigs for our weekly income. Will we still have jobs as DJs? Will nightclubs make a return? What will happen to festivals?
In times like these, it’s important to remember that everything’s shutting down for a reason, and it’s only temporary. So when the coronavirus does, eventually blow over, and it inevitably will. DJs will bounce back, Festivals will resume, and events will go on. More importantly, after a lengthy hiatus that’s looking to last up to 6 months, these events will be in more demand than ever. As will the DJs, Musicians, Event Organizers, Promoters and all those involved!
So although taking care of your health and safety should be number one; the best thing you can do is take this time of self-isolation, social distancing and quarantine as an opportunity to hone in on your skills and make sure your DJ business comes out stronger on the other side!
But how exactly do you do that? We’ve put together a list of 5 ways to keep you busy and productive during self-isolation!
Social Distancing for DJs
With many quarantined, socially distancing themselves, or facing national shutdowns, the party has now moved to social media. As we saw during Chinas initial spike in cases of COVID-19, social media usage was up 20%. So it’s no surprise that we’re seeing similar jumps in affected countries right now. Therefore, Live Streaming your DJ sets and performances are perhaps the best ways to get in front of your audience. All while providing an outlet for your fans to enjoy the music and stay connected.
The best part about it, there’s no chance of spreading or contracting the virus; and your audience won’t have to pay a door fee or put up with ridiculously high drink prices! It’s a win-win! It’s also easier than ever to do it effectively and professionally. If you’re really limited to equipment and budget, hit record on Instagram Live, YouTube or Twitch and it will more than suffice. We’d recommend these platforms over live-streaming on Facebook as there’s a good chance your stream can be taken down due to copyright if you’re playing other people’s songs!
However, if you’re like most, you’ll want to make sure both your video and audio quality are on point! Because the better quality your video and audio are during a live stream, the more likely you are to retain your audience and keep people tuning in! So if you’re using your phone, we’d recommend picking up something like a TRRS to TRS adapter such as the Rode SC4. A cost-effective method that’s sure to sound a whole lot better than relying on your phone’s internal microphone.
Another and more professional way to get around this is by using an audio interface such as the IK Multimedia iRig Stream. Taking the signal from your controller or mixer and turning it into a digital signal before it hits your phone/tablet. You will need to ensure your audio interface is compatible with your phone, and you have the appropriate jack cables to connect your controller to your interface.
It helps if you have a good internet connection too; because nobody wants to listen to a live-streamed DJ set that keeps cutting out!
Live Streaming has proven an effective method for both marketing and connecting with fans during these tough times, with just about every DJ getting on board. From popular local DJs including Timmy Trumpet, Tigerlily, MashdnKutcher and Carl Cox; to the biggest names in EDM such as Calvin Harris; and renowned Hip Hop Producers and DJs such as D Nice and 9th Wonder.
What’s more, data from Facebook shows that live video significantly outperforms uploaded video in almost all engagement metrics. Especially because the fans that follow you on these platforms will receive a notification immediately once you start streaming. So it’s one of the best ways to connect with your audience while they’re all sitting at home looking at their phones! If you’re a DJ, live stream your DJ Set. If you’re a producer, you don’t have to miss out on the fun; it’s the perfect time to stream your live beat making and producing sessions!
Create a Podcast
Over the last few years, the Podcasting format has rapidly gained popularity. So there’s no better time to start that podcast you’ve been putting off than now. Everyone’s indoors, you’ve got the time, and your audience is constantly looking for new content to spend their time-consuming! Most commonly a platform for conversation and interviews, you might struggle to get guests into your studio during these times. Thankfully, with technology such as the Rodecaster Pro, you can easily record phone conversations with professional audio quality. Plus, while everyone’s got extra time on their hands; you might even find it easier to get hold of those harder-to-reach guests you’ve always wanted to chat with!
Alternatively, if you don’t want to start a conversational podcast; many DJs have taken to podcasting in the form of mixtapes and mix shows using platforms Soundcloud and Mixcloud. It’s a way to showcase your talent as a DJ, while giving your listeners a variety of new music to listen to while they’re at home. It can also be beneficial as an easily accessible portfolio for helping you land more gigs when everything’s back up and running!
At DJ City, we offer a range of podcasting equipment, podcasting microphones and podcasting packages that include everything you need to get started. Check out our in depth blog post for more detailed steps on how to start!
Learn Music Production
Another way to make use of your social distancing time is to learn new skills! So if you’re a DJ, why not try your hand at music production? Or if you’re a producer, why not try your hand at DJing? Maybe you’re a DJ wanting to delve into the realm of scratching and turntablism? History tells us that creativity flourishes during hardship, so it makes sense to try all avenues available. You might even find out you have a hidden talent!
Plus, if you’re already immersed in music, it’s likely you’ll find it easier than most to adapt! Check out our 2020 beginners guide on how to make music, and pick up some essential equipment to get you going such as a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation), MIDI Keyboard or Controller, Audio Interface or Microphone.
Alternatively, if you’re looking to learn to DJ, we also have everything you need to get started. Whether you’re looking for a new DJ Controller, Turntables, DJ Mixer, or DVS tools such as Serato; we have everything you need to make DJing a reality!
Don’t forget, there are endless free tutorials and resources on YouTube, so you can find all the hands-on videos you need to really grasp your new skills. Whether it be music production, DJing, or turntablism!
Find New Music & Organize Your Collection
With everyone inside, what better time to dedicate to finding new music! Whether you do this by listening to radio stations and playlists on Spotify, checking out the latest on the Beatport charts, or find yourself a relevant DJ pool for your favourite genres. Finding new music is a sure way to keep you inspired, giving you the arsenal you need to create new mixes, mashups, and tracks you can use for your live stream DJ sets. As well as fresh content you can play live when the time comes! On top of listening to music, immersing yourself in the content that other DJs and Producers are putting out is another way to make sure you stay inspired and your creative juices keep flowing!
Then, while you’re on a mission to find new music, it’s a good time to cull and organize your digital crates! Scrap those songs that don’t get played, add in new ones, set up cue points, and find new combinations that mix well together. This will make your performances run even better and smoother once gigs start to resurface!
Practice and Create
Above all, the best thing you can do while social distancing is practice! As the old saying goes, practice makes perfect; and leveling up your DJ game with practice and new techniques are sure to give you a competitive edge on the other side! You’ve got the time, so put it to use! Because once this is all said and done, your services will be much more valuable than those who spent this time doing nothing.
Furthermore, not only should you be practicing your DJ skills, but you should also spend time on your social media and marketing! Content is king, so use your creative skills to create regular pieces of content that you can put out on all your social media platforms and grow your online presence! On top of that, it’s also a prime time to collaborate and network with other musicians in the same position!
The Final Say
Finally, although we’re all facing enormous hardship, remember we’re all in this together. So it’s important not to take this downtime for granted, and use it to be as productive as possible; maximizing your growth so you come out stronger on the other side! Most importantly, make sure you’re continuing to bring value to your audience, during a time when they need it most!
How are you spending your time in isolation? Tag us in your photos and videos on Instagram!